Media, Politics and Society

As I started my research for my research paper I realized how much media actually affects politics and society. My first topic of research was the Kony campaign for invisible children. I read a post already in the blog about it, but my focus is how media was used to mobilize people and to get people aware of an issue that for a while was thought to be a scam and fake. Jason Russel, creator and filmmaker for the Kony 2012 campaign, graduated from the Southern California Film School with a degree in Cinema Production. He then decided to pursue and idea he got when he met Jacob, a Ugandan running away from the LRA. He made a thirty minute video that hit youtube May 3rd, 2012. The video is so well made and the story line so compellingly told that the thirty minutes fly by without one even realizing it.
Studying film production prepares you to portray and convey the emotions you want your audience to feel. It is your job as a film maker to make your audience feel something. For all we know, Kony could not even be real and just because of the way he made the video, making us meet Jacob, relating everything back to himself and his son, making it all a personal relatable experience, we will believe that there is actually a real threat out there for the people of Uganda.
It has been prove that the LRA is a threat to the Ugandan people and other countries around but my main concern with this video is how someone can sell you and one hundred million people a story, that might be a lie, so easily. The media gives a chance for people to control and manipulate our needs and wants and it is scary to see it in action.

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Economic Inequality Research Paper

My research paper is on economic inequality in the United States and media coverage around it. I am proving that there is indeed a lack of coverage on the event. A chunk of my paper will go towards discussing Occupy Wall Street, a huge recent protest trying to raise awareness of corporate greed. Media coverage of it was sometimes supportive, but usually negative, and it was the indymedia online sources that really propelled this movement.

http://occupywallst.org/ is the main website for the Occupy movement, created by “various radicals at the Occupy Solidarity Network.” Besides for op-eds and various propaganda pieces, the website serves a bulletin board as schedules/maps for marches/protest using mediated mobilization. This is a very primary source on how the Occupy movement views economic inequality, and their forum discusses many different media coverage topics.

Economic Inequality and What You Can Do About It: A Primer and Call to Action by Richard Dumont is a great source for proving economic inequality exists. This is necessary because I don’t want to lose audiences when I tell them how the media is covering inequality if they don’t believe that it exists. It’s a short book that talks about the negative effects in society due to this inequality.

How The Media Covered Occupy Wall Street-And Crony Capitalism by Mark Milke is an journal article that can be found with some simple googling, it analyzes news sources covering Occupy Wall Street and if they were actually reporting on just the event or actually talking about corporate corruption/subsidies.

There are many academic journals on the subject, including #Occupy Wall Street: Exploring Informal Learning About A Social Movement On Twitter by Benjamin Gleason. It explores how OWS was discussed on twitter. Sometimes positively or to gather the troops, but sometimes critique it.

I am also looking at Russia Today (rt.com), I’m sure most of us are familiar with the site by now. They were actually nominated for an international news emmy award for their extensive coverage of the OWS movement.

In class, our Professor mentioned OWS spokesman Jesse LaGreca who can be seen here- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=INsxBCtlc20 I want to look at youtube videos and analyze television news coverage of the events and underrepresentation.

Here are some more sources while I’m at it, let me know if you want to send you my full bibliography.

DiPasquale, Christina. “Media Matters on Income Inequality Coverage Ahead of State of the Union Speech | Common Dreams.” Common Dreams. N.p., 27 Jan. 2014. Web. 27 Mar. 2014. <https://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2014/01/27-0&gt;.

  •  Analysis of recent income inequality news from major networks before Obama mentions the inequality in his State of the Union Address.

Kurtz, Howard. “Are the media buying into the Democrats’ ‘income inequality’ push?.” Fox News. FOX News Network, 8 Jan. 2014. Web. 27 Mar. 2014. <http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/01/08/are-media-buying-into-democrats-income-inequality-push/&gt;.

  • Is the media believing that income inequality exists, because Democrats are pushing it for ‘political points.’

Karlin, Mark. “Readers Tell CNN, “We Want More Coverage of Income Inequality”.” Truth Out. N.p., 30 Oct. 2013. Web. 27 Mar. 2014. <http://www.truth-out.org/buzzflash/commentary/readers-tell-cnn-we-want-more-coverage-of-income-inequality-and-get-it/18282-readers-tell-cnn-we-want-more-coverage-of-income-inequality-and-get-it&gt;.

  • CNN readers are pushing CNN to include more coverage of economic inequality. This awareness is apparently connected to the OWS movement.

 

The Research Paper

For this paper you should do the following things:

  • Pick an issue or topic that you don’t feel is covered sufficiently by mainstream media.
  • Explore through extensive research how this topic is covered through non-mainstream convergent media, making sure to thoroughly cover all media, i.e., print, audio, video, digital, and as many combinations thereof you can find.
  • Draw some conclusions about media coverage of your topic, especially in the realm of class discussions and readings. Can it only be represented by divergent voices? Do you see it ever entering the mainstream?
  • Document all of your sources, including all links, in MLA format.
  • Turn in your final draft in Print (paper) form, but have a digital copy prepared for possible archiving (I’ll explain this further in class).

This assignment should be approximately 14-16 double-spaced pages, or 3,500-4,000 words.

IMPORTANT DATES:

Monday, 10/15 – Have your research topic approved by me

Thursday, 10/25 – Have a working bibliography prepared for class

Thursday, 11/15 – In-class presentation and discussion of your work so far – you should be at least halfway done by this time

Thursday, 12/6 – PAPERS DUE

Research paper source

My research paper is on the gray area between information and entertainment media. One main source I’m using is The Lifespan of a Fact, which was featured in an On The Media episode. I will also be using a story aired on This American Life about the retraction of a story about Apple factory workers in China. The initial story, Mr. Daisey and the Apple Factory, has been taken down but it is a perfect example of the subject of my paper. The retraction episode is just as good and gets at a lot of points im discussing in my paper. Anyone interested in this topic should check it out.

This American Life Retraction story

Research Paper Proposal

So for my research paper, I plan on exploring our culture’s obsession with celebrities. I want to discuss extreme celebrity worship and fandom, and what is considered “normal” celebrity fandom.  Questions I would like to pose and maybe even answer are;

  • Why are we so obsessed with the lives of celebrities?
  • What needs do knowing about celebrity lives fulfill for us?
  • How can liking a celebrity turn into worship?
  • Are certain types of celebrities more prone to extreme worship?

These are some initial questions and ideas for my topic.  Hopefully, while exploring different aspects of celebrity worship, I may come across some in depth examples of worship in its most extreme case.  I also would like to discuss certain celebrities in four categories; sports, movies, music, and reality television.  My reasoning for these categories is to possibly shed light on the range of reasons people become obsessed with celebrities.  Even though the lives of celebrities is discussed at great length in the media, I feel what is not discussed enough is why we care about them in the first place.  This is what I hope to discover through my research.

Research Paper Proposal

          I am going to write my paper on the television genre of legal drama.  My paper will analyze these popular TV shows in depth.  I will obtain statistics on the show’s viewers, who they are, their age, sex, annual incomes etc.  I will compare these data to the content of the advertisements that play during the shows’ programming.  I will do background research on the shows’ histories since first being aired.  Based on the data that I obtain I hope to define target audiences for each show and discover how advertisers utilize this information for successful advertising. 

The Research Paper

For this paper you should do the following things:

  • Pick an issue or topic that you don’t feel is covered sufficiently by mainstream media, or that you can provide a different perspective on.
  • Explore through extensive research how this topic is covered through non-mainstream convergent media, making sure to thoroughly cover all media, i.e., print, audio, video, digital, and as many combinations thereof you can find.
  • Draw some conclusions about media coverage of your topic, especially in the realm of class discussions and readings. Can it only be represented by divergent voices? Do you see it ever entering the mainstream?
  • Document all of your sources, including all links, in MLA format.
  • Turn in your final draft in Print (paper) form, but have a digital copy prepared for possible archiving (I’ll explain this further in class).

This assignment should be approximately 14-15 double-spaced pages, or 3,500-4,000 words.

IMPORTANT DATES:

Thursday, 3/29 – Have your research topic approved by me

Thursday, 4/5 – Have a working bibliography prepared for class

Thursday, 4/19 – In-class presentation and discussion of your work so far – you should be at least halfway done by this time

Thursday, 5/3 – PAPERS DUE

The Research Paper

For this paper you should do the following things:

  • Pick an issue or topic that you don’t feel is covered sufficiently by mainstream media.
  • Explore through extensive research how this topic is covered through non-mainstream convergent media, making sure to thoroughly cover all media, i.e., print, audio, video, digital, and as many combinations thereof you can find.
  • Draw some conclusions about media coverage of your topic, especially in the realm of class discussions and readings. Can it only be represented by divergent voices? Do you see it ever entering the mainstream?
  • Document all of your sources, including all links, in MLA 2009 format.
  • Turn in your final draft in Print (paper) form, but have a digital copy prepared for possible archiving (I’ll explain this further in class).

This assignment should be approximately 14-16 double-spaced pages, or 3,500-4,000 words.

IMPORTANT DATES:

Monday, 3/21 (The day after Spring Break) – Have your research topic approved by me

Thursday, 3/31 – Have a working bibliography prepared for class

Thursday, 4/14 – In-class presentation and discussion of your work so far – you should be at least halfway done by this time

Thursday, 4/28 – PAPERS DUE

The Research Paper

For this paper you should do the following things:

  • Pick an issue or topic that you don’t feel is covered sufficiently by mainstream media (you define this as the “Big Five” media conglomerates Bagdikian mentions in Chapter 2 of The New Media Monopoly).
  • Explore through extensive research how this topic is covered through non-mainstream convergent media, making sure to thoroughly cover all media, i.e., print, audio, video, digital, and as many combinations thereof you can find.
  • Draw some conclusions about media coverage of your topic, especially in the realm of class discussions and readings . Can it only be represented by divergent voices? Do you see it ever entering the mainstream?
  • Document all of your sources, including all links, in MLA 2009 format.
  • Turn in your final draft in Print (paper) form, but have a digital copy prepared for possible archiving (I’ll explain this further in class).

This assignment should be approximately 14-16 double-spaced pages, or 3,500-4,000 words.

IMPORTANT DATES:

Friday, 3/12 (The day before Spring Break) – Have your research topic approved by me

Thursday, 4/8 – Have a working bibliography prepared for class

Thursday, 4/15 – In-class presentation and discussion of your work so far – you should be at least halfway done by this time

Thursday, 4/29 – PAPERS DUE