Global Crises and Global News

Global Crisis = Global News

When it affects a global audience, it is necessary to faciliotate an international spread of information dissemination. it is also important to ensure that certain cultures are not left behind based on contraflows laggin or the view points held on Ethonocentrism. It is trhough global crisis that factos such as clashing civilisations should be cast aside as the topic or issue at hand conflicts a party much larger.

In this topic, ‘voice for the voiceless’ becomes apparent, as, as much as many parties would like to see equality in perspectives give, the fact of the matter is that often news channels only provide a spotlight on the ‘welites’ of society consditioning.

There is also the issue of false baslance whereby a topic is opened for disccion with unequal balance or perspective allowed where it is not required or needed.

In particular the issue of Global warming and the controversy that surrounds the tiopic. There is a swarm

How the topic of global warming and climate change is experienced internationally is a highly mediated topic, with vast differences on public opinion, speculation and presentation of information. This then leads to the question, for these vast differences to occur, is there the arrival of false balance and if so how can this be rectified? In terms of voice for the voiceless – in terms of westernised communities harbouring stronger and wider news capacity, there is a certainty that people groups will go un-heard and swept aside

mouth-tapeThe way in which a topic is discussed and presented to the public will influence two factors: The first, how it is interpreted an identity is facilitated as well as changing the education and therefore understanding of the wider public. Therefore understanding and social acceptance of a topic will be greatly swayed and misinformed.

Who has a say in this public debate and what kind of weighting their position is given should, in terms of social factors and influence levels, be determined based on education, qualifications and abilities to discuss in an open format. Instead, in this ‘debate’ for climate change, ideologies that are presented are based off opinion and speculation with unequal weighting of importance being granted, lowering the believability of the specialists information.

However, in this scape, where so many societies and social groups have already accepted that climate change is a fact and therefore action needs to be take, should the “debate” of such a topic still be in the air? Espcially when this kind of reporting and dissemination of information only leads to further confusion in the public domain.

I propose that the need or space for debate ends, and instead a conversation is facilitated by which education is provided.

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What’s the actual story being reported?

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With the many hundreds of avenues in which news can be received and reported, there is a confussion, a cloudiness that surrounds the news world. This is due to forms of reporting, means in which news is disseminated and ways in which audiences are indulged and created. There is also the concept and difference between WHAT is news and what MAKES news. These two identities clearly distinguish the motives and alliances of news outlets, allowing audiences to make an informed decision on which perspective is being presented.

News also goes through a form of gatekeeping, whereby it is selected as newsworthy, is then chosen to go into a selected news channel and then is  presented in a particular way for a certain audience. Differing news stories are weighted based on merit of response they will facilitate.

The concept of a packaged truth

Creating an us against the approach, local news going against the standardised contraflows of information, is it blocked?

News is a transient element. An event will not be news forever, instead it will slowly (or abrublty) movie into the history category, in which excitement about the event is drastically lessoned

News story – often becomes just that, a focus on the VoicelessSmRGB[1]story and not a focus on facts. a narrative of an event with characterisation, climax and apparent resolution

News will also make use of images in order to enhance viewers attention and evoc an emotionl response in order to sell further news, or create excitement and involvemenet.

It is important to understand or to question the perspectives placeds on thise involved in a news story, in terms of how are the viewers positioned to precieve them as an individual or cultural group? Quesitoning also how cultures are presented, as an us and them approach, or the weaker people group needing our support, are they given a voice in the story or are they simply reported upon?

There are also the two R’s – relevance and rarity: If the story is occurring in the now and entices attention, or if it relating to a local issue, then it will gain much higher regard than a segment that may focus on other cultural issues outosd eof national borders. The second R stands for rairtity, with a story that is either not often reported upon or heard about taking the foreground of news platofrms. it is important to note that through this reporting can be sensationised and not hold an even stature of what needs to be displayed and what does not

Often news reporting is skewd and does not focus on all parties involved, instead highlighting the elite within an event, this could be political parties or faces, ‘experets’ and support avenues rather than those wjho are directly invoveld. The elites purpose is to create a bridge bweten the story and the viewer, to inform and persuade and potentially prodived expert knowledge.
References:

UOW, Week 9 Lecture Slides, BCM111 – International Media and Communications, Who counts in global media

Dramatic Television is Elementary my dear Watson.

As mentioned, it is a complicated task for Comedy to more across cultural borders, even with expansions of culture through globalised contraflows. However, do the same rules apply for Dramatic Television? Firstly, it is important to evaluate the worth of each text and whether it can appropriately be moved into new contexts. Secondly, there must be some form of identifiable attribute, whether in circumstance or a continuation of characterisations. Thirdly, how easily or willingly are spin-offs created and does this add value to the overall dramatic concept.

One key example of countless successful adaptions of Drama is Sherlock Holmes, both in character and in storyline, this story-hood has been used time and time again with no inventions, takes and perspectives being highlighted anew in each. The success of the concept is based on a number of principles:

  • There is an innate Englishness – a quality withheld in most (if not all renditions)
  • There is great diversity in topics and ability for character expression
  • Being crime and detective drama allows a format to flow easily into new contexts and cultures

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There are two seasons currently battling it out for top “Sherlock Holmes”, one being American CBS ‘Elementary’, which follows a standard Americanised police drama process, while still developing characteristcation and exploring limits of Sherlock that previous texts did not investigate. The second text is ‘Sherlock’, the BBC’s mini series that continues most original features from the book into their highly British drama. In both these texts, the success of dramatic television is highlighted: relationships and personalisation supporting an international communication.

It is also important to note what these texts create, a pop culture and international following. Audiences, now no longer bound to simply being an inactive audience, can facilitate the spread of information. As seen in the video above (a fan made content, fanfiction), interaction is used as an expression of content, of being involved and of progressing a story further. There are countless avenues for audience to partake in, this being known as participatory culture. One place in particular FanFiction, facilitates an online conversation bridging international waters, bringing together audiences to share in one experience similarly to when the show itself is consumed.

This is another strength of Dramatic television; audiences are no longer bound to an expression portrayed by the producers, instead they can add to the story, ensure it remains culturally sound and relevant.

 

References:

Asher-Perrin, E (2014) ‘Battling Super Sleuths: The Awkward Case of Elementary, Sherlock, and Building the Better Adaptation’ Tor.com, available online at  http://www.tor.com/blogs/2014/02/battling-super-sleuths-the-awkward-case-of-elementary-sherlock-and-building-the-better-adaptation

Penny, L (2014), ‘Laurie Penny on Sherlock: The Adventure of the Overzealous Fan base’ newstatesman.com, available online at http://www.newstatesman.com/culture/2014/01/sherlock-and-adventure-overzealous-fanbase

 

Just a great Aussie Classic.

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“Australia is a great place to make film and television … entertaining global audiences for 40 years.” claims the Screen Australia website on the ‘Doing Business with Australia’ homepage but is this the case? Aussie producers are very good at creating fish-out-of-water comedies, quality adult drama, animated children’s programmes and intriguing documentaries but in terms of Australian film, the quality as determined by the audience size is questionable. With only 3.5% (Screen Australia) of the total Australian box office being Australian made and an average of 21 Australia films being released locally per year (15 in 2013) the numbers do not create the identity of a world dominating film industry.

From the get go I want to establish my stance on Australian film; there are certainly areas in which growth is needed, where marketing needs to improve in order to receive a higher proportion of local audiences and where diversity needs to be showcased to a higher standard. However, Australian film is unique from any other film industry in the world, in terms of cultural influences, audiences and size.

So how do we know Australian Film is even supported? AACTA (Australian Academy Cinema Television Arts) is committed to connecting Australian and international audiences with great Australian film and television content. “The primary role of AACTA is to recognise, encourage, promote and celebrate film and television excellence in Australia through the nation’s highest screen accolades – the AACTA Awards.” It through the Austraimages-2lian Film Institute (AFI) and the Academy that Australian film is recognised, encouraged and disseminated. These awards, although not an Oscar are held in high esteem within the industry in terms of content production, artistic skill and producer direction. With Internationally known actors Geoffrey Rush, Cate Blanchett and Nicole Kidman being recognised along with Baz Luhrmann’s countless internationally successful film’s, the Institute celebrates the success of the local industry.

It is also vital mention how the Aussie Film Industry caters for and represents diversity in both content and audience structures. With an ageing population it is important for new industries such as Australian film to cater for older generations both in output of content as well as enetertainment mediums such as cinemas. In 2001 Captioned Cinema was introduced in order to appeal to a wider range of audiences in order that they may be able to enjoy the movie-going process. Media Access Australia is a site that makes available information about accessible cinema attendance as well as a vast range of other media technologies. Through this, the website is attempting to break down social barriers that may limit an older generation from attending the cinema.

images-1There is also the identification of Indigenous Australians being represented in the film industry. With a rises in Aboriginal creatives producing hits in the box office such as Samson and Delilah (2009), Bran Nue Dae (2009) and the Sapphires (2012), this historic trend of Indigenous Australians merely being represented is fading away. These movies have created their own genre, building the versatility of the Australian film industry with the Australia Screen site  demonstrating just how far Indigenous actions, film producers and content has come.

When the research merely focuses on the numbers and digestible figures, a part from assessing a net worth, it fails to identify causes and opportunities. The Australian Film industry is a gem to the local economy, not so much in monetary value, but in people power and worth. Screen Australia has acknowledge this by providing both quantitative and qualitative research results on their site allowing readers to assess a whole image of the industries position. In order for Australian film to gain greater success in the future, it needs to work to its strengths and focus on highlighting those to potential audiences. There needs to be an increase in marketing through using social media platforms and other new means of disseminating in order to break through the crowd of options for audiences. They also need to establish who is their current audience and who is their future. In this they will find the right means of success.

Oh, and on a side note: Don’t bother comparing to Hollywood’s standards Australia, we’ve got more class than that.

References:

Screen Australia 2014, Industry Statistics, Strategy and Research, Accessed 29th of September 2014, http://www.screenaustralia.gov.au/research/default.aspx

AACTA 2014, About AFI/AACTA, Accessed 29th of September 2014, http://www.aacta.org/about-us.aspx

Australian Screen 2014, A short History of Indigenous Filmmaking, Accessed 29th of September 2014, http://aso.gov.au/titles/collections/indigenous-filmmaking/

I am 1 of 1 billion.

4539909788_15b20fd72c It’s a modern day rite of passage: Turning 13 and being legally able to sign up for your very own Facebook account. I emphasise legally as there is also that one or two eager twelvie wanting to be connected earlier than the rest of their peers. The number of youths signing up before their time has reached 7.5 million world wide and while that may seem like an astronomical number, on a singular level, most would say that it is not the big of a deal. However The NewYork Times has highlighted one core reason those breaking the age restriction may find trouble further along in the Facebook lifetime:

“A child could be found, for instance, if she was 10 years old and said she was 13 to sign up for Facebook. Five years later, that same child would show up as 18 years old – an adult, in the eyes of Facebook — when in fact she was only 15. At that point, a stranger could also see a list of her friends.”

Stranger-Danger, as a society this is still one of the major anxieties we have for our children, only now it has escaped into our online worlds. The issue of child predators and online sleuthing has come hand in hand with Facebook and other social medias success in the same way that other new technologies has brought social anxieties in the past. So much so that there are now computer protection programs that allow parents to install software that both protects and restricts children’s online capabilities. Facebook has recognised the issue within their regulatory proceedings and have moved to make changes. According to a Wall Street Journal the first change is that Facebook may allow users to be under the 13 years old age bracket with new mechanisms being in put in place to link the child’s account to their parents. The second is a new scanning system which Facebook uses to watch for potential predators or terrorism threats.

But let’s talk about Facebook in more broad terms. Established in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg and having only just reached it 10th birthday, the social media sites has over 1 billion users and a with the company worth of $US150 billion, it is safe to say this is a major player on the technological sphere. USA Today sums up the good and bad of Facebook in one word: Intimacy. It is both the core strength of the media platform as well as it major weakness, allowing communities to come together but also facilitating communication between perfect strangers.

There are new anxieties from an outsiders perspective with images of an anti-social, aggressive, lonely future for ‘the children’. There are also internal anxieties from actual Facebook users with a study being conducted that took technology away from 200 students for 24 hours.

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“I clearly am addicted and the dependency is sickening,” said one student.

The study found that this thought resonated with the majority of the students as well as characteristics that were identified as traits held by alcoholics such as withdrawal, cravings, anxiety and a sense of detachment. The students themselves acknowledged that the need for technology and Facebook was also however a way in which they could feel connected, accessible and in control. That highlights one of the biggest anxieties users feel when they can’t access the social site, being disconected, uninformed and therefore not able to participate in what they consider society, they’re biggest concern is being cut off from the constant and instant flow of information.

The following video is just one of many different media examples on how the users and audience of Facebook are able to discuss the effect of the platform. It is a casual view of the world Facebook has created which presents the idea that media in itself should not be or rather is not taken to seriously by its users.

Another perspective from Hub Pages attempts to present both positive and negative impacts Facebook has on children, however when the article paints Facebook as an addictive, society damaging, delinquent creating media it is hard to view it as a useful tool for children.

“As if parents did not already have enough to worry about, now they need to worry about their children displaying negative psychological effects from over-using Facebook”

Debate.org is a way in which members of society can voice their opinion about Facebook in a debate like format. This in itself demonstrates how society is using the very thing it has concerns about in order to discuss those concerns. Ironic? This movement to an online sphere along with the anxieties that are presented are all relative to space. We are now a digital nation, with a constant flow of information, being greater connected but with broader concerns for societies well being. Facebook is merely a media platform by which social change is facilitated, therefore concerns and the ability to shape the future go hand-in-hand.

References:

Huffington Post 2014, Facebook Age Requirement, Accessed 28th of September 2014, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/30/facebook-age-requirement-lying-study_n_2213125.html USA Today 2014, How Facebook changed our lives, Accessed 27th of September 2014, http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2014/02/02/facebook-turns-10-cultural-impact/5063979/ Psych Central 2014, New College Addiction? Social Media, Facebook or Friends, Accessed 28th of September 2014, http://psychcentral.com/news/2010/04/23/new-college-addiction-social-media-facebook-or-friends/13108.html

Are you paying attention? No really, are you?

As I sit blogging at the family Mac, I have three other pages open for research, my iTunes account is up running as well as my word page for note taking, my laptop is beside me so I can read pdf’s as well as my iPhone in case I receive any “important” texts. Some (mostly my Mum) would say this is an overload of noise and therefore a severe distraction from completing anything to a high standard. Others would say that I am simply demonstrating a modern technologically focused example of multi-tasking. But what if these two views are put together: I am multi-tasking, but I am also being quite distracting moving from one thought process to the next, slowly loosing concentration, and why is that?

The concept of mulit-tasking is that the individual can complete more than one task at the same time. However, the only way that this can be done successfully requires two elements: The first is that at least one of the tasks being untaken must be so well learned that it requires little thought (i.e. walking) and the second is that the two tasks being completed must involved different types of brain processing. It is for this reason an individual can exercise or paint or even drive whilst listening to music. But why is there such a debate about whether studying and music can work together?

There is an overarching thought that music in general has negative impacts on ones ability to concentrate, however, upon more thorough consideration it is important to note that it is the kind of music being consumed as well as the individual. Music with lyrics activates the language section of the brain and can therefore hinder study when the subject requires word construction or concentration on language, yet this same form of music can be incredibly useful with spurring on students who are finalising mathematic equations. In the same way some students found classical music was enough of a distraction from external ‘noise’, but simple enough that they could focus almost entirely on the task at hand.

BrainFacts.org describes multi-tasking in a different way acknowledging a study conducted by the National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) the focus was how the brain reacted when two or more tasks were being undertaken. This study found that a prefrontal cortex which spans across the front of the brain in effect splits in half or rather the two sides were able to function separately when completing two seperate tasks. It was also found that when one tasks completion would recieve a reward, that task took priority. This could be something as simple as when you are listening to music and your favourite song somes on, the section you are studying or your train of thought will jump to focus on the song rather than the work. This is the potential danger of listening to music that is of direct interest to the studier.

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http://dailyinfographic.com/do-you-listen-to-music-while-studying-infographic

However an incorrect use of music is not the only distractor of ones ability to study. In a report by Annie Murphy Paul 263 American school and college students were observed during their designated study time. The outcome of the research was that only 63% of time was actuallly used to complete work while the other 37% was spent on other social media outlets. Although I agree with these findings and know I myself am I fine example of how not to study the majority of the time, I found the methods in which this study was conducted to be a little unsettling. In this I mean the students were only observed for 15 minutes, not every student had the same level of task to complete (“something important” was the requirement) and with each student there was a strange individual, their observer sitting in, changing the dynamic of a normal study environment. However, I will agree with the statement “It’s multitasking while learning that has the biggest potential downside … when students are doing serious work with their minds, they have to have focus.”

The end result from this research is that studying with music can be a useful tool, however, that music must find the balance between being interesting enough to lift the students mood, but not distracting enough that the students ends up singing and forgets where in the essay they were up to. It is also important that the subject of study is receiving the necessary attention and not being drowned out by other multi-media distractions.

Elizabeth Axford, an online instructor in the University of Phoenix College of Humanities and Sciences, she has determined that there is no definitive answer on whether studying with music is appropriate. “Based on everything I’ve read, it really depends on the individual. Some students can study effectively with music playing, while others are distracted by any outside stimulus.”

So if you are student reading who needs to listen to some jamming toons while studying, feel free to keep your ear-phones in, just maybe avoid the Top 30 Hits. However, the phone sitting beside the key board with Snapchats, messenger alerts and texts, yeah, that is a distraction!

 

References:

Psychology Today 2014, Technology: Myth of Multitasking, Accessed 27th of September 2014,  http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-power-prime/201103/technology-myth-multitasking

BrainFacts.org 2014, The Multitasking Mind, Accessed 26th of September 2014,  http://www.brainfacts.org/sensing-thinking-behaving/awareness-and-attention/articles/2013/the-multitasking-mind/