All posts by kateacker

Anti Siri

If I’ve learned anything, trying to predict the future of technology is foolish. Trends are called trends for a reason.  In my opinion the future advancements for our lifetime are here but have not been unveiled yet. There will no longer be new and old media. Technology will all be digital and it won’t be so much what the technology is but where the technology is.

 More and more creative minds are inventing ideas and are actually able to produce them. We have the most access to information than ever before. Technology will continue to advance and reach more people faster than ever.

I hope as a society people will start to hate technology. I know thinking of life without the all the technological advancements we have today seems outrageous. But doesn’t anyone else hate how much time we actually spend sitting aimlessly on our phone and laptops. Refreshing Twitter and Instagram every 5 minutes? Now, I might be a little more obsessive than others but I know people can relate to the stigma surround immediacy. Immediately responding to a Facebook post or text message. We are all constantly connected and socially active but have you ever felt legit closer to someone because you talk with him or her over text?

I don’t want to have a whiney kid that is complaining about lack of Wi-Fi and I hope as a society we reach a point where we want to cleanse from our technology and do things old fashioned like a hand written letter over a text, a face to face interview vs. Skype, using a map over Siri. (Okay maybe not maps.) I love to think of my pre-internet brain. I have a feeling it was more rested.

Speaking of Siri, although revolutionary, technology can be unreliable and more of a hassle than if we would have just done it ourselves. Siri hates me and can never seem to understand me. Lord help us if more “Siris” are in our future.  With that being said, the progress in medical advancements we have made have been impressive and hopefully will continue saving lives. Also, the media market has become extremely saturated and I like the freedom we have as a society to watch what we want to watch. Hopefully, this next generation embraces citizen journalism and their tech savvy abilities to reach out for the public good.

Technology is definitely a double edge sword and one I know that I take for granted. I can embrace the technological advancements because I know they won’t be going anywhere. However, as far as it goes I know it will be instrumental in teaching and leading to progress enriching the minds of the next generation but I truly believe that I will be an “old fashioned” parent. My childhood was amazing and I spent hours on end playing outside and with the neighborhood crew. An active lifestyle is healthy and necessary for children that will need to balance out the vast amount of digital information and media that will over power them one day. Finding happiness through technology can lead to disappointments and emptiness.

Family, friends, fresh air, and travel are ultimately what matters and there have been advancements to make all the things we cherish easier to hold onto and access. However, these are all things that could pull us apart from them as well. Life has and always will be about balance. New information age or not. 

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To Flatten A Heroine: The Disney Princess Filter

Disney is one of the largest media conglomerates in the country. This meaning Disney is one of the most powerful and influential corporations in our country. At age 6 I knew a few things to be true: I was going to be a mermaid when I grew up, I was thankful I didn’t have any evil stepsisters, and my toys came to life after I left the room… Why does this even matter? I slowly but surely came to the understanding none of this was going to happen to me. But, the point I’m trying to make is that a media powerhouse, such as Disney, gives many children their first taste of imagination and fiction.  When do we learn to separate reality from fantasy? Disney is a cornerstone for many children’s childhoods. They construct and bring to life what we learn to be beautiful, ugly, good, and evil.

 The online media content that I chose to focus on was a piece written on the blog: Women You Should Know. The article displays the work that a cartoonist designed that put a “princess filter” on 10 Real life role models.

The cartoonist, David Trumble, decided to draw these images in response to the furor surrounding the “princessfication” of Disney princess, Merida (Brave). He wanted to analyze how unnecessary it is to collapse a heroine into one specific mold, to give them all the same sparkly fashion, tiny figures, and the same homogenized plastic smile. This brings about the concept of advertisers looking to make profit and turning viewers into consumers. This article has the underlying ideology that the public only responds and becomes consumers of media when the media is society’s idea of beautiful.

These 10 women that David decided to give the Disney treatment, sadly I don’t believe many young people could identify them. I believe that David’s mission is to bring about an issue staring society and the media right in the face. Beautiful is one mold. Beautiful is shiny hair, little waists, and glamorous clothes. He poses an interesting question. Would these successes have been clouded or highlighted if they were more beautiful? I think Sarah Palin is a great example that, no, beauty can cause more harm than help. Outward beauty isn’t the problem. Some of the world’s most beautiful women are some of the most insecure women. What the problem is that media outlets such as Disney aren’t making any efforts to use their power to make a change. Disney reaches a wide range of demographics at an impressionable age. Teach these young boys and girls that beauty can come from intelligence, a sense of humor, or a good conscience. Because as they age they will separate fact from fiction, however their first priming of what is beautiful will unconsciously sit with them for years to come. 

To Flatten A Heroine: Artist Puts Disney Princess Filter On 10 Real Life Female Role Models

Gatewatching: Anonymously

If I’m being completely honest, as 20 year-old college student the news is not my first priority. Between practice, class, and Netflix, I just don’t have time for a relationship with CNN. I sadly knew more about Miley Cyrus twerking before everything Syria, all thanks to Twitter. Sadly, I am not the exception. The presence of citizen journalism on the web has seen a steady increase. More and more people are using the Internet and different websites to access their news.

Media conglomerates implement the concept of gatekeeping, which simply means deciding what is considered newsworthy and should be reported to the public. This follows the traditional journalism structure. What about all the crimes, protests, successes that go unreported unintentionally or intentionally? That is where the concept of gatewatching and AnonNews.org take pride in voicing depth and breadth when it comes existing journalistic content.

AnonNews is made up of every day citizens, bloggers, and journalists dedicated to reporting what the mainstream media doesn’t.  They want to “disseminate information they view as vital, separating it from the political and celebrity gossip that inundates the mainstream.” They are striving to become the hub of independent reporting. They focus on livestreamers, reporting an event as soon as it is happening instead of aggregating after the fact.

One of their most recent stories is called Operation Payback using the hashtag #OpSony to “out” Sony on their abuse of the judicial system in an attempt to censor information about how their products work. They write that Sony victimized their customers and violated their privacy. AnonNews writes that Sony wishes to suppress information for sake of corporate greed and complete control of the users.  The article ends with a warning to Sony saying they will experience the wrath of Anonymous. There are over 2,000 comments on the article. Talk about negative publicity. This article shows how the revealing of hidden details left in the media can be unleashed in an unconventional setting and allows viewers to frame it in anyway they want. Reading some of the articles I think Anonymous is the closest thing we have to objectivity in media today. It is honest and has the public and their desire for truthful information at heart. Their freedom to post the content they want allows for a larger audience demographic and larger amount of newsworthy topics to be discussed.

Gatewatching can be done by individual bloggers or organizations dedicated to reporting and evaluating the news that commentators may not report right away or at all. Gatewatching can largely focus of the republishing, publicizing, contextualization and curation of existing material rather than the development of substantial new journalistic content. AnonNews is a subset of Anonymous and has over 1 million followers. One challenge that Anonymous faces is the amount of comments and traffic on their website. Mainstream journalism has frames based on the media outlet they work for. Anonymous can cover almost everything and anything. Their followers are dedicated and search out for the information they are looking to hear. These forces can be mutually conflicting because it allows the freedom of content however it reemphasizes the message that people will continually read what they want to read when they want to read it. Audience members will continually have the power. So a website constructed by the audience is an incredible concept and I believe the future of journalism. 

Sources:

http://anonnews.org/?a=item&i=787&p=press

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/18/anonymous-subgroup-your-anon-news-indiegogo_n_3109502.html

http://anonnews.org

Subjectivity & Morality

Do you remember the first PG-13 movie you ever watched? Or the first R-Rated movie you snuck into?  And when the “S word” was shut-up? Were any of these questions not applicable to you? If so, this represents one of the Morality debate’s biggest facets: subjectivity. Everyone is raised differently and introduced to certain concepts in different forms and at different times.

The Fairness doctrine was developed in the 40’s when there was a scarcity of television and radio stations. Now there are over 2200 broadcast stations and over 15,200 radio stations. Even with all of these options of what to watch and listen to, there is still a debate lead by conservatives that media needs to rate their shows to monitor morality for the benefit of children’s impressionable brains.

In my opinion, because morality is wildly subjective, there is no possibility that it will ever be an unspoken topic of debate. Conservatives are pushing for a media regulation that will limit what television and movies can portray to an audience. On the other hand, media conglomerates view this regulation as limiting to what they can artistically produce and give the public what they are craving.  Media conglomerates are looking to make money. If the show produces good ratings, it generates press, gets another season, and they make money. They make money by pushing the morality and rating limit a little. Give the public something to respond to and talk about!

If media corporations wrote the ratings I think it would be the same subjectivity/morality debate. There are channels that are known for being conservative and family friendly, and there are stations directed at a mature viewership. Racy shows might get racier, and conservative shows will most likely stay the same. However, there will always be the debate: how far is too far? Television is for the public good and if shows start pushing things too far, I worry they wouldn’t be able to recover. Part of the reason shows and movies receive awards is they can push the audience and move the audience in a way other producers and directors can’t. If everyone was pushing to a non-existent limit… how would we appreciate tastefully done movies? 

I believe that television and movies are a source of entertainment and what you choose to see or listen to, is your own choice. Entertainment is portable; you won’t be able to protect your children’s lives and ears forever. There always needs to be a balance. Don’t rush your kids to grow up before they are ready, but on the other hand, don’t shelter them in a way that could make them want to seek out unmoral content in spite of you. 

Entertainment should be entertainment. However, it is important to remember that with each new generation, the amount of entertainment they are immersing themselves with can be impressionable. Parents need to create their own family values, media aside, and have it be their constant. Media will be forever changing and influential, it is safe to say, morality can only be guaranteed in ways you promote and teach it. 

CBS CORPORATION

The CBS Corporation is a world – renowned mass media conglomerate. Nicknamed, “The Eye”, for their long-standing success among media giants. They continue to deliver industry-leading content across a multitude of platforms. See their holdings below and the success will speak for itself.

The complete ownership map can be found at this website http://http://www.cjr.org/resources/?c=cbs

OWNERSHIP MAP

TV: Twenty-nine television stations and CBS Television Studios; CBS Entertainment; CBS News; CBS Sports; CBS television stations; CBS Television Studios; CBS Studios International; CBS Television Distribution; the CW; Showtime; CBS College Sports Network; CBS Television Network; Smithsonian Networks

Radio: CBS Radio and 130 radio stations on stations across the country.

Online Holdings: CBS Interactive; CNET

Print: Simon & Schuster; Watch! Magazine; Pocket Books; Scribner; Free Press (publishing house)

Entertainment: CBS Films

Other: Other: CBS Outdoor; CBS Connections; EcoMedia

The Company’s operations span virtually every field of media and entertainment, including cable, publishing, radio, local TV, film, outdoor advertising, and interactive and socially responsible media. Their slogan is, “America’s Most Watched Network.” Their major stake and globalization lies in their broadcast. CBS Studios International is the leading supplier of programming to the international marketplace.

I find it fascinating that conglomerates can be vertically and horizontally integrated. They can invest and prosper in any field of media. Vertical Integration is represented in their Distribution channels, Production divisions, Exhibition Venues. Horizontal integration is represented in their presence in all media fields, publishing, radio, television, etc.

After the split with fellow conglomerate, Viacom, CBS corporation holds the CBS Television sector at its core. Thriving among CBS’s “under performers”  such as Columbia Records and the CBS Technology Center.

There is no way the power and influence of the CBS conglomerate could be summarized in one page. With that being said, I think it is a testament to their broad presence in every field that touches lives daily. I enjoyed taking the time to read about the CBS Corporation and how it continues to grow and flourish, while the public proceeds to immerse itself in media daily. They take their power extremely seriously and are aware of the lives they can truthfully inform and inspire.

Information found at the following websites:

http://www.freepress.net/ownership/chart

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CBS#Conglomerate

http://www.cbscorporation.com/ourcompany.php?id=11

http://www.cjr.org/resources/?c=cbs#