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Posts Tagged ‘Di’

Media and Social Movements

November 10, 2011 1 comment

The most compelling story to me is the one about Wal-Mart. The first reason is the most familiar name—Wal-Mart. Then it is the story itself. As I know, Wal-Mart is famous for saving money for the customers. However, it also saves money for the corporation itself. Wal-Mart cost a little money on the products. Meanwhile, the employees’ wages were very low, and they could not get good health care from the corporation. “As of 2004, Wal-Mart had received $624 million in taxpayer money to build warehouses, and an estimated $2.4 billion to build stores” (124; GN ch 7). “In 2008, the CEO of Wal-Mart was to receive $32 million in salary and other compensation” (123; GN ch 7).  Meanwhile, Wal-Mart did not stop expanding the number of the stores. In 2005, Wal-Mart wanted to make the plan of building a supercenter on a wetland. This angered the local opposition including WMNF, the St. Petersburg Times and a group of people that wanted to stop the expansion of Wal-Mart. In this protest, the interaction between the media and the social movement played an important role. WMNF “always told the listeners how they could contact the community groups” and “announced the dates of upcoming and protests” (126; GN ch 7). It also did the interviews to gather the information why people should fight Wal-Mart. Also, the St. Petersburg Times published the long newspaper article and the letters from readers responding to the article. The media collected the news about anti-Wal-Mart activity and people reflected their anti-Wal-Mart thoughts at the same time. “Movements ask the media to communicate their massages to the public, while the media look to the movements as one potential source of ‘news’ ” (237; MS ch 7)—this is the reflection to the Wal-Mart story. The people, who wanted to stop Wal-Mart’s expansion, took the benefits of the coverage of the media to reflect their thoughts to encourage more people to join them in order to successfully stop Wal-Mart. “movements usually need the mass media to widely publicize their activities” (237; MS ch 7). The media gathered the news and got more publicity during propaganda of the Wal-Mart issue.

“Local journalism that made a difference” makes me feel like a great capability of local journalism. However, sometimes, I feel like the great capability of local journalism is because its short distance between the local news. It has more chance to reflect local people’s thoughts, which is more real or closer to real life. From the angle of the large media world, local journalism seems like a little part in the large world. How do you think about the capability of local journalism (related to real life (–small media world) or the large media world)?

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Blog–Media in a Changing Global Culture

November 8, 2011 1 comment

“Globalization involves a number of ongoing interrelated process” (326; ch 10). It’s beyond the national boundaries to communicate. I think our interaction at South High School is kind of a reflection of the trends in globalization. I say “kind of”, because in the meeting on last Thursday, there were a few people from other countries. When we shared the ideas or information, we were communicating globally, not only limited on Americans’ thoughts. Also, the topics or issues we talked about were not only from the US. They were from the globe, although the conversations among us only covered some issues of the globe.

In the Chapter, the cultural imperialism involves “a large volume of media products flow from the west, especially the United States, and sp powerfully shape the cultures of other nations that they amount to a cultural form of domination” (332, ch 10). The chapter gives the data to show the impact of the cultural imperialism: 60% of the TV series and 55% of the film dominate the European television screens (333; ch 10). It illustrates the erosion of local cultures. The reason of the erosion of local cultures and the cultural imperialism is the substantial budgets. With a lot of money, great images and programs can be produced easily. That is why American films and TV series are so popular in the world. However, the concept of the “global village” contradicts the cultural imperialism. The “global village” involves making the people of the world get closer, all the people’s voices can be heard (325; ch 10) and the information can be shared equally (329; ch 10). Obviously, the cultural imperialism violates the idea of the “global village”. Due to the gap of wealth, the rich controls the media and the poor does not have the equipment or access to get the information of the world. Thus, the “global village” is still a dream. Also the local cultures need to be protected to fight against the cultural imperialism.

After reading the chapter, it makes me think more about the globalization. I do love the idea of the “global village”. It conveys the concepts of peace, freedom and equality—people of the world can communicate and share the information together and fairly beyond the time, space and the boundaries of cultures, which make people get closer. It also reflects the rights of people in communication. However, they are still ideal concepts due to different levels of development among countries, gap of wealth, the cultural imperialism, centralized ownership and so on. The “global village” does not fit the real situation of current global media (329; ch 10). Thus, the politics and global media regulation are needed to protect people’s rights. Due to different situations among countries, the governments play the important roles in the media—diverse limitations in media appear in different countries.

I think I won’t change the video essay based on the experiences. From my opinion, the video essay reflects the query of the reality in today’s global media in an aspect, which shows the dream of the “global village”.

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blog #4

October 18, 2011 1 comment

Media plays an important role in the world. It influences people and shapes their thoughts about the world. The approach of the Media effects is the most compelling to me. This approach really illustrates how the media is related to our life and how it affects people’s understanding. In another words, it reflects how the media controls people’s minds sometimes in some ways. Meanwhile, it shows the strength and weakness of the media in certain ways.

In the Chapter 7, there are some models or theories under the media effects describing the connection between the media and people based on the findings of the projects or research. The hypodermic model (or silver bullet model) vividly describes the role in people’s life—the media injects a massage directly into the “bloodstream” of the public (231; ch. 7). Thus, the power of the effects of he media is huge and direct. The author uses Spanish-American War in 1898 and Orson Welles’s panic in 1939 as the evidence to prove this model that the powerful media can directly controls the public. The minimal effects model illustrates the weakness of the media—“the media massages acted to reinforce existing belief rather than to change the opinion” (232; ch. 7). It shows that the media sometimes cannot strongly influence on some individuals. The author points out that some people who already have the strong political faiths are hardly influenced. At the last explanation of the minimal effects model, it states that this model considers the group of people who have the existing foundational beliefs that is more thorough than the early hypodermic model. The agenda setting reflects the relationship between the media’s agenda and the public’s agenda. It also presents the importance of the journalists “playing in selecting ad shaping the news” (232; ch. 7). Based on the finding of Funkhouser (1973) and the example of the Vietnam War, it shows that the media’s coverage of the issue is more prominent than the real issue itself—it also reflects that the media’s strength on controlling the news in order to control the public. Later, based on other findings of the research, it shows that the media can set the agenda and help the public to decide the focus aspects of the issues. The political socialization theory shows the influence of the media is strong and builds the political foundation in children. The Cultivation theory is explained based on the example of television viewers according to a project of George Gerbner and his associates. The people growing up with television are hard to change their opinion based on their belief according to the information from the television, although the television does not represent things from the real world.

Based on the findings from the research and projects, the author describes the power of the media and its weakness as well. Depends on the explanations of the models or theories, the understanding of the media effects is becoming more impeccable in order to analyze the strength and the weakness of the media effects in people’s life instead of just focusing on the strength. According to the analysis of the media effects, the media portrays an important role on people’s opinion and guiding the young people’s understanding of the issues in the world. However, it does not work for some people who already have foundational beliefs.

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Blog #3-Free Press

October 16, 2011 1 comment

Media is important in our daily life. It influences our understanding of the world by collecting and disseminating the information through the internet, television, radio, newspapers, magazines, movies and books. In order to have good understanding of the world, people need a high quality media. However, it is not easy to achieve. The potential agency of the media is dominated by the constraint of the state (71; ch. 3). The formal government regulation and informal government put the pressure on the media (108; ch. 3). The political influence operates in the media. There are not certain rules in the media (110; ch. 3). With these factors affecting the media, we cannot get a high quality media, while we are thinking about the important role of media in the society. In order for the high quality media, some media advocacy organizations occur, for example, Free Press.

The Free Press “promotes media reform, independent media ownership, and universal access to communication” (109; ch. 3). It established in 2002 by media scholar Robert W. MacChesney and Josh Silver. It is “a national, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization”, and works on reforming the media (freepress.net). It focuses on the issues related to the media. The Free Press welcomes people to join them to participate in the activities about media issues. It gets people involved in communicating and sharing the information about the media in oder for the development of the media (111; ch. 3).

One addressed issue by Free Press is the Internet Freedom. It states that the phone and cable companies want to dominate the access to the Internet in the United States. They want to keep away from Net Neutrality in order to decide the speed of the Internet by the payment. This activity is supported by many other organizations and people. However, I still wonder how to save the Internet. The Internet is controlled by several companies and people cannot live without the internet. It is not like other issues that people can quit and then wait for someone or some organizations to solve. For this issue, people cannot do that since we cannot stop using the Internet. That’s why it is not easy to save the Internet although there are many people joining the activity. I want to know how this saving activity can be possible.

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Blog#1

September 15, 2011 1 comment

Reading the stories of Cathy Davison in Chapter 3 and 4 in the book Now You See It: How the brain science of attention will transform the way we live, work, and learn is like I am reviewing my stories in the school, although I am from China, not America. However, Chinese students and American students sometimes might have similar or the same learning experiences.

Most students are always willing for entering great schools. With the degrees from great schools, students can have opportunities to get great jobs. In Chapter 3, the author mentions two ways for “young people who come to an elite private university”. “One way is to test to get into the best preschools so you can go the best private grammar schools so you can be admitted to the most elite boarding schools so you can be competitive at the Ivies or an elite school outside the Ivies like Stanford or Duke”. Another way is to get good grades in all courses through public schools. Generally, in order for good universities, students should study hard to get good grades for good schools before going to universities. In China, we only have one way for good universities. It is the college entrance exam. Getting high scores in that exam means you get the chance for good universities in China. However, with the huge number of students and a few good universities, going to the top universities in China is pretty hard. Students have to study hard to get higher scores. When a student enters elementary schools, the competition with over one million students begins. However there are about 200 top-level universities in China. When I was in elementary schools, all my classmates had classes out of school. These classes included writing, language classes, dancing, art, sports and so on. From grade one in the middle school, only a few were still taking these classes, which were nothing related to the classes in the school, but most students changed to take math, Chinese, English, geography, chemistry, physics or history—some of these classes were to help them review the courses and some additional classes for students to learn deeply. When I was in grade two in the middle school, I had to give up the drawing classes and begin to take classes related to courses in the school at weekends. So every day was like school day, but luckily, I could get eight-hour sleep every night. When I was in high school, I only have average six-hour sleep everyday. Except sleep and meals, the only thing I could do was studying. It was really a hard time, but I really did a lot of writing and practicing for thinking carefully and perfectly on the questions during that time. It was a hard time, but it was also a great experience that I can make everything. I can go on studying although it is difficult. During that time, technology was not helpful since we had textbooks that they were the only things I needed to focus on. I did not have time for playing, TV and computers. Instead, comparing to technology, communication played the main role. It helped us to understand the materials better due to the communication with teachers. As I mentioned it was a hard study time. Communication helped me to get less pressure from the study. Talking with parents and teachers, telling then what I was thinking about my study and my future or getting some good advises for my daily life and study were really helpful. During the communication, I feet like that time was not only a study time for good a university in the future, it was a training in my life to make me mentally stronger.

In Chapter 4, the author mentions that some students had some candid feedback for her. “They said everything about the course had been bold, new and exciting. Everything, that is, except grading.” I think it is not only for her class. I feel like all the courses are interesting to learn except grading. When I was in the middle school, my friends and I went to give some feedback to the teacher. One of them was to cancel grades. We thought we could be more interested in the courses and enjoy learning if there was no grade to judge us on this course. The teacher asked us, “How can I know if you learn well? I can do that if you do not want grades, but how can you know whether you guys will do well on the last big exam in your life—the college entrance exam.” We could not answer the teacher. We could not think without thinking about reality—the background of our real life. We could have no grades, but we could not cancel that exam due to the real situation in our country.

For this class, I think the boss-level challenge is find the way to express the ideas. It is not a fun thing since we will focus on serious topics. The process of combining ideas and media in a professional way  to present is not that easy.

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Blog #1

September 15, 2011 1 comment

Reading the stories of Cathy Davison in Chapter 3 and 4 in the book Now You See It: How the brain science of attention will transform the way we live, work, and learn is like I am reviewing my stories in the school, although I am from China, not America. However, Chinese students and American students sometimes might have similar or the same learning experiences.

Most students are always willing for entering great schools. With the degrees from great schools, students can have opportunities to get great jobs. In Chapter 3, the author mentions two ways for “young people who come to an elite private university”. “One way is to test to get into the best preschools so you can go the best private grammar schools so you can be admitted to the most elite boarding schools so you can be competitive at the Ivies or an elite school outside the Ivies like Stanford or Duke”. Another way is to get good grades in all courses through public schools. Generally, in order for good universities, students should study hard to get good grades for good schools before going to universities. In China, we only have one way for good universities. It is the college entrance exam. Getting high scores in that exam means you get the chance for good universities in China. However, with the huge number of students and a few good universities, going to the top universities in China is pretty hard. Students have to study hard to get higher scores. When a student enters elementary schools, the competition with over one million students begins. However there are about 200 top-level universities in China. When I was in elementary schools, all my classmates had classes out of school. These classes included writing, language classes, dancing, art, sports and so on. From grade one in the middle school, only a few were still taking these classes, which were nothing related to the classes in the school, but most students changed to take math, Chinese, English, geography, chemistry, physics or history—some of these classes were to help them review the courses and some additional classes for students to learn deeply. When I was in grade two in the middle school, I had to give up the drawing classes and begin to take classes related to courses in the school at weekends. So every day was like school day, but luckily, I could get eight-hour sleep every night. When I was in high school, I only have average six-hour sleep everyday. Except sleep and meals, the only thing I could do was studying. It was really a hard time, but I really did a lot of writing and practicing for thinking carefully and perfectly on the questions during that time. It was a hard time, but it was also a great experience that I can make everything. I can go on studying although it is difficult. During that time, technology was not helpful since we had textbooks that they were the only things I needed to focus on. I did not have time for playing, TV and computers. Instead, comparing to technology, communication played the main role. It helped us to understand the materials better due to the communication with teachers. As I mentioned it was a hard study time. Communication helped me to get less pressure from the study. Talking with parents and teachers, telling then what I was thinking about my study and my future or getting some good advises for my daily life and study were really helpful. During the communication, I feet like that time was not only a study time for good a university in the future, it was a training in my life to make me mentally stronger.

In Chapter 4, the author mentions that some students had some candid feedback for her. “They said everything about the course had been bold, new and exciting. Everything, that is, except grading.” I think it is not only for her class. I feel like all the courses are interesting to learn except grading. When I was in the middle school, my friends and I went to give some feedback to the teacher. One of them was to cancel grades. We thought we could be more interested in the courses and enjoy learning if there was no grade to judge us on this course. The teacher asked us, “How can I know if you learn well? I can do that if you do not want grades, but how can you know whether you guys will do well on the last big exam in your life—the college entrance exam.” We could not answer the teacher. We could not think without thinking about reality—the background of our real life. We could have no grades, but we could not cancel that exam due to the real situation in our country.

For this class, I think the boss-level challenge is find the way to express the ideas. It is not a fun thing since we will focus on serious topics. The process of combining ideas and media in a professional way  to present is not that easy.

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