Thursday, 28 November 2013

News, Trust, "Truthiness"

I really do believe that the satirical news that we often get is equally as reliable as the regular news. Sure we don’t get the weather, or sports, or traffic like the actual news rooms. That isn’t too big a problem when these satirical channels are giving us the current news; just they are giving it to us with a different approach. Furthermore, the reason I find the programs to be acceptable is because they know where to draw the line. One does not see satirical news reports on murders or crimes where people are killed or natural disasters. Danielle writes, “The main objective of the show is to highlight the ‘current’ news and essentially, make fun of it.” ( This is exactly why I think they are equally reliable; they highlight the current news and make sure the stories are factual. They just add a little twist on how they portray those ideas. Shows like The Daily Show or Saturday Night Live do not go around making up everything they do; they get their ideas from the other news channels.

People are agreeing that satirical news is a need in today’s life. Victoria wrote,”…In our culture it is not uncommon for people to not even be aware of many of the issues going on…so I think even satirical news reporting is an important way for people to become aware of many of the issues and news reporting that is going on in the world.” ( This is very as I am one of those people who do not keep up with the daily news and what is going on in the world. I learn about what is going on around the world by watching these satirical news shows. For example, the Rob Ford news I heard about from other people, but never really watched what was going on until I saw the SNL Rob Ford skit. Same thing goes for the Tiger Woods news that happened awhile back, I remember watching the SNL skit on it and just crying because it was so funny.

I believe that the more these shows start to cover more and more stories the more they will grow and produce more satirical news. Soon enough we could see the news being split half and half between the regular news channels and the satirical news channels. I would definitely prefer the satirical news more, but that is just my opinion. People around the world love news things and as said here, “These kinds of shows bring a whole new way to view the political world and maybe deal a few digs while they’re at it.”(, people are going to start slowly moving more towards satirical news if these channels/programs continue to grow.

Really? Who doesn’t like a good laugh now and again especially when someone messes and the satirical news takes it and gets real creative with it? I sure do and I know there are others out there who do as well.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Is the Fake News the Real News?

I believe that the news that is presented to us by programs like The Daily Show or The Rick Mercer Report is a mainstream form of culture jamming. Though this might not be the best news I also think that it is needed in the public sphere to allow the audiences to relax a little more than usual.  The way the news is portrayed on these channels allow the audiences to look at the news in a comedic way and allow them to get a good laugh here and there when the news gets too tough.

I think the best culture jam for the news is Saturday Night Live. “Culture jammers use their…in the production of meaning by creating spoofs…” (O’Shaugnessy, Stadler, 214) When I read this in the textbook my first thought was Saturday Night Live, because they do some really funny skits based on different news. Just this past weekend Saturday Night Live opened up the show with a skit about Rob Ford that has been going around for the past week. I find that this skit is used to just help release the tension that is building up with the audiences. Not saying what he did was correct, but just allowing people to relax. ( This link is to the skit done if you want to watch it. The skit was done really well and while letting audiences know the news they put a comedy spin on it because they many have already heard what is going on so they lighten the mood.

“Culture jamming techniques can also be used simply to be clever and funny, without a political or critical motive.” (O’Shaugnessy, Stadler, 214) Some news channels or programs have no intention of using political views or critical points on purpose. The main goal is to create a program that is funny for the audiences. Shows like SNL and the Rick Mercer Report like to mix up their skits with some being all funny and others having some type of motive behind them. This is how they get huge audiences to watch, they allow those that know more about the news going on in the world lighten up and allow those that just want comedy to watch as well. I tend to like to watch the satirical programs more than the actual news because you not only get the base of what is going on, but you also get a little chuckle out of the skits and the way they display the news.

So in conclusion, satirical news reporting is mainstream form of culture jamming because these news shows are used to make political or critical events a little funny and allow these programs to help the mass audiences relax after days or weeks of hearing the same stories over and over again.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Demonstrable Demographics

After reading a few different blog posts about various ads I have found three that I can sort of talk about and compare to. Any ads to do with Cover Girl and things of that nature bore me, so my post would not be too interesting to read. I definitely find myself to be a more graphical and violence type of person so what has been said in these posts I can relate to. Also I love to see certain stars and celebrities show up in different ads. In all movie trailers the biggest thing to catch the eyes of the audiences are the stars that are going to act in the said movie. Actors like Will Smith, Eddie Murphy, Denzel Washington and Morgan Freeman are all main reasons why I watch their movies.  “Star Power,” ( the easiest way to attract people to media is to use certain stars and celebrities in the ad that have major influences on people. Many people will go out of their way to buy certain goods and services from ads when their favourite celebs are in these said ads. I know people who will go out and buy a pair of boxers for $50 just because it either has or it says David Beckham on it.

The next similarity I can see is that people look at ads differently and interpret them differently. “The commercial is a Mustang driving down the road, and each pedestrian (different ages and genders) sees it in a different way, the way they would like their Mustang to be.” ( Everyone has a mind of their own and their own thoughts and opinions when it comes to anything. Reading, watching movies, texting, emails, letters and anything else people do is different for everyone because we all grow up with different morals and values. This is both similar and different to my post as a movie trailer allows for people to think about the events shown and what they mean to the movie. Also what problems occur and other events that might happen in the movie. It is different because people still have the same thought to go watch the movie and to just let the movie play out instead of making expectations as to what the movie will be like.
I agree 100% with what was said here, “I think that this ad is really interactive and makes the viewer feel like they are actually experience the events. From the upbeat music, to the fight on car in the arctic, to the explosions in a Las Vegas casino, the audience is drawn in.” ( This was said based on their ad, which was about the new Call of Duty game, which is somewhat equivalent to a movie trailer or any type of video message. They have to be interactive and exciting and make the audience want to see more. These types of ads want to make the viewers feel like they are a part of the situation and the events going on. If the audience is not interested in an ad that is presented to them they don’t think about it and they tend to find other ads related to the topic, but are displayed better.
The bottom line is that the ads that catch the attention of audiences are the ones that are interactive and tend to be the most appealing. Furthermore, the ones that use celebrities and superstars tend to attract more attention because people want what these people have and want to be like these stars.


Thursday, 7 November 2013

What the Hail?

The type of advertisement I chose to look at was a movie trailer. Movie trailers are really easy to discuss based on who they are intended to and how easy they can attract their audiences. The movie trailer I chose was Thor: The Dark World. It is the sequel to the first Thor and is about the god Thor needing the help of his brother Loki to defend his city from the villains.  This movie is targeted at teen agers, smaller kids, or older people. Movies, for the most part made for just about anybody. Of course, there are those movies for people who are above a certain age but if those movies were created more the movie industry would lose a lot of money because of the people they are missing who are under the age of 18.

This trailer hails me by showing the man hero as a god, someone who cannot die and is super strong. It also uses a great story line to keep me interested and to not allow me just to see all action for the whole movie. The action in the movie does pull me in because I love to watch fight scenes and watch things explode and watching all the effects that are put into these movies. “The media work as a hailing, interpellating system. The way they address us (their modes of address), constantly interpellates us – as family, as citizens, as children, and so on.” (O’ Shaugnessy, Stadler, 186, 2013)This quote is saying that any form of media advertisement is changing who we are and what we like and dislike. I believe this to be true because as younger kids we were into TV shows and movies that were done by Disney or were a lot more cartoonish. As we grow older we experience more violence in video games and movies, also are brains start to develop more and we are able to comprehend a story line. So, like myself, growing up with seeing these different aspects and ways to create movies has changed my way of thinking and has changed what movies really excite me.

I still love to watch cartoon movies like Monster’s Inc., Oliver and Company or the Arista Cats because they are from my childhood and are favourite movies. Nowadays though the movies I really tend to watch have changed to the more violent or horror type movies because the cartoon/Disney movies have become terrible. “We live in a culture that stresses individuality, encourages us to believe that every person has unique qualities…questionable.” (O’ Shaugnessy, Stadler, 189, 2013) We are all individuals and have our own ways to look at different types of media, but it feels like with movies we are all similar. A movie like Paranormal Activity or Thor have their distinct genres, and the people that watch these movies like the distinct genres and are comfortable and enjoy what goes on in these movies. The quote says that everyone has unique qualities and this is true, but I feel like when it comes to movies people have a lot more in common with others. If you like love stories where there is little to no action movies like Django or Thor or Iron Man are not suitable choices and same goes the other if you are looking for action.

I know these movie trailers are very successful in representing my norms and values and draw my attention because if they didn’t I wouldn’t end up at the movies theatres watching them. 

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Wanted: The Media That We Need

Is The Media That We Want The Same As The Media That We Need?

I don’t believe the media we want is the same as the media we need. My parents always told me that what I wanted and what I needed were two different things. A need is something that helps a person to survive and to live like water, food, shelter and clothing. A want is something a person would but isn’t required for survival. When we look at food there is difference between want and need in there. We need food from the four food groups and we would want chocolate bars because they are not needed.  So the same goes with the media, there is some media out there that society definitely needs to access.
The media we need is consistent of things that would affect the way we live our lives, whether it be for the day, week, month or life. A good example of this is traffic as many people drive to work. This means they would need to know what is happening on the route to work and if they would need to take another way to work.  “The relationship between the media and the audience is like a fisherman and fish.”  ( I chose this quote because when fishing there are certain lures that one needs to use to catch fish, not all fish go for the same bait. So the media works in the same way. There are certain stories /things that need to let the audiences know and that the audiences need to survive.
“As an important industry in the world today, the media tries its best to supply content that will satisfy consumer demands.” ( This true in all aspects of media, where these companies need to both put out the things people want and the things people need but they are not the same things. I love watching shows on TV like Criminal Minds or NCIS: Los Angeles but they are not needs to survive, whereas for me knowing the prices of gas and listening to sports are needs for me because of the way my life style is.  What I want and what I need are different than what other people want and need in the media industry. Some people may want Facebook notifications because it is personal for them but others may need Facebook because it is for an organization for them.
We simply do not want whatever the media shows us, but we actually have some choice about the type of media we consume.” (  Having the ability of choice is what determines which media is a want and which is a need. Meaning that we choose what we consider to be a need and what we consider being a want or maybe a better word, a piece of entertainment. The ultimate thing that we have as humans is the ability of choice in almost every aspect of our life.

So in conclusion I believe that the media we want is not the media we need because the media we want does not help up to survive in the life we live today.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Do we get the media we want?

Do we get the media we want, or do we want the media we get? The way I look at this, it is the same thing just worded differently. The reason I believe this is because when we get media coming to us we have a choice whether or not to allow the media to engage us, the choice to allow or brain to think about the media presented to us. Like when one watches TV, no one watches shows that they do not find interesting and if there are boring ads people change the channel. This is because they chose not to allow that aspect of media to affect them. Of course everybody has their preferences, so what one person watches somebody else might not.

If I had to choose one or the other I believe we more get the media we want. The reason for this is because we get to filter out all the media that we don’t want so we can keep and enjoy the media that satisfies us.  “The media are things that come in the middle of or mediate communication. They are means through which message senders can communicate to message receivers, or audiences” (O’Shaughnessy, Stadler, 78). I take the words here very literally to help back up my decision about why we get the media we want. In the quote it is said the message senders “can” send messages to the receivers or audiences, but it is up to these audiences to accept said messages. It is like trying to call someone on the phone, you send the call and then they can choose to either pick up the phone or to ignore it. Depending on the decision made will depend if the message gets through or not. Related to TVs or other social media platforms, if the message is put out some people will get it no doubt. Others though that do not go on the platforms or turn on the television have chosen not to get those messages that are being relayed.

As we know, many companies and businesses that control media products get to choose what they send to their audiences, but what one company doesn't send another will. TV seems to be the easiest thing to get an example from. There are millions of television channels and each channel is a little bit different than the next. If we were to look at TSN and then look at The Score, it is known and showed that TSN is Canada’s #1 sports network. So they show more and go into depth more on sports events that are related more to Canada. I find that The Score is a lot more just the highlights without an in depth look into players, games or events. So the people who just like highlights, The Score is perfect, but for those who like the highlights and the analysis, TSN is the better suggestion.  The sentences:

                “It focuses on how industrial mechanisms and imperatives surrounding production, distribution, and exhibition affect the kinds of texts created, the kinds of audiences they reach, and the messages they send. It is often used to show mass media products embody capitalist ideologies that are then consumed by the mass audience”.
                                                                                                                                (O’Shaughnessy, Stadler, 22)

I find this to be true for the most part. The people behind creating the products and sending messages “control” the mass media produced, but ultimately the audience controls, again, if they accept it or not. If we take a look at the television again (just because I'm going to talk about little kids) there are many, many channels that little kids should not be watching, that they have access to. I believe that 99% of kids when they are three to 12 years old want to watch cartoons, but with all the channels, they have a hard time finding them. So the parents of these children help to control what the kids watch and allow them to watch what they want without having worrying about other channels and their featured programs.  My parents did this for me as a kid. Some shows were just too graphic or had subjects that weren't appropriate like CSI, or Criminal Minds. Therefore, they locked those channels because parents mostly know what their kids want to watch and because they weren't appropriate. I would then tell them the shows that I wanted to watch and they would set up the auto-tune reminders so I wouldn't miss my favourite shows. Just to sum that all up, it is me and my parents getting the media we want.

                In conclusion, the way I see it, the people putting this media out control the media that is presented to us, but we have the final choice if we accept these messages or not. So we get the media that we want… 

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Blog 1 Response: Mass Media Impact on Others

Re-reading my previous blog post it dawns on me that is was somewhat a negative approach to the way mass media has impacted me, but it hasn’t changed the way I like at media. It has however, added some different approaches that I did not think about.  Of course there are tons of positives to go along with mass media and after reading a few of the other students blogs I realize that there was a common theme with a positive about communicating, but negatives with the way media portrays body image. I definitely agree with the posts about how the media displays characters and models on TV or over the internet are wrong.

“No one wants to watch a television series about a chubby 14 year old girl who goes to a crumby high school in an even crumbier town.” (Veronica Field, This was probably the sentence that got my attention the most and really made me think about the way that both men and women are portrayed on TV. Many of the guy characters are tall, muscular and play sports. Moreover, the more intelligent characters are shown to be smaller in stature, wear glasses, and appear to be intimidated easily. As seen in the real world, none of these appearances are seen to be exactly true. I consider myself to be pretty intelligent, I do play a lot of sports and I am in good condition. There are some guys that fit the descriptions that are shown on TV, but that is just who they are and they seem, for the most part, to be pretty happy with themselves.

The positive part of mass media, as shown to me by another student’s blog is that mass media has created the biggest set of connections to people around the world. From Facebook to Twitter or YouTube to Instagram, it just seems that the world is connected in some way and for the most part it is a good thing. Being able to contact people in a different country via text message or an instant message over Facebook makes it really easy to stay in touch with old friends and family members.  This way we don’t forget where we come from and who is part of our life. “ The ability to communicate with people across the globe in seconds via Facebook, the power to receive breaking news faster than ever before on Twitter, and the capability to upload a video in minutes on YouTube has sparked a new era of media that provides the instant results many of us have become accustomed to over the last few year”, (Zachengel98, What he mentions in that line has so much truth to it. I spend a lot of time on my phone and send close to 100 texts a day, and talk on Skype for four hours a night. It has come to the point where if I were to lose the technology and ways of communication I have now I would have no idea what to do with myself because I would not be typing this blog right now, all my notes would be hand written and I wouldn’t be able to communicate with those who are away from me while I’m at school.

I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for mass media and technology in general. It is going to be a great couple of years.