Think Twice Before You Judge

Media ownership influences the way in which certain media platform select what to present to there target audience. Owning various media platforms has become a commodity for the famous, the more an individual either owns or has sharing’s in the more control that individual has in the media. It seems as if media ownership has turned into a multi-layered Venn diagram, Sydney Morning Herald gives an idea of ownership.

Have you noticed that certain media platforms show particular news stories, sports reports and even propaganda? Whilst others either show the same or opposite? For example Channel Nine’s news reports, largely set there Sports reports about the latest news in the NRL and the cricket whereas other sports such as cycling, tennis and Formula 1 are only ‘mentioned’.

An article from the Daily Telegraphy covers Fox Sports recently securing the rights to broadcast Formula 1 alongside Channel 10 and Foxtel. What makes Fox Sports different from the other networks is that they will now be able to broadcast, “every race, every qualifying and every practice live and in High Definition, making sure our subscribers won’t miss a second of the action”, said Fox Sports CEO Patrick Delaney. Whilst other networks have holdings in this sports event, it presents diverse perspectives and focuses amongst networks.

Dating back to Hitler, this was an example of propaganda displayed and supported by owners of the media. Joseph Gobbles was the Reich Minister of Propaganda in Nazi Germany, which largely controlled the news that was released throughout Germany and the incorporation of Nazi propaganda. This is similar to today, where it is evident that particular media platforms display various types of ‘subtle’ propaganda for example Murdoch’s Bias in an article from Crikey.

From reading various articles on Rupert Murdoch, it looks like he is one to continuously switch his views on liberal and labour parties and his media platforms present information. Recently Malcolm Turnbull expresses his intentions to ‘deregulate’ media ownership. In an article from The Australian, it begins with Turbull’s intention to allow main broadcasters the right to ‘top-tier’ sports which deny’s Foxtel the right to bid. Murdoch then backlashes in a tweet, implying that this decision is designed to aid specific networks.

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A quote from Ten chief executive Hamish McLennan, supports this idea that media ownership has the ability to dictate the success and diversity of various networks widespread; “just further distort an already uneven playing field”. From this it can then prevent the rights to broadcasting sports over a variety of channels.

So where is this leading? Commonly, we focus on the owners of different media platforms and how they have the ability to dictate what is presented. Although I have found that the government can be a form of media ownership, and their abilities to change regulations instantaneously effect the freedom of broadcasting example sports on different media channels. It is evident that the diversity throughout the media is declining although it is not only occurring internally but also externally.

Apples and Aliens.

Society is divided into two categories, apples and aliens. I for one enjoy my fresh fruit, its easy to cut up, easy to digest and I enjoy staying up to date with the freshest fruit on the market. Whereas aliens aren’t particularly my thing, researching about their existence, characterisation and there aesthetics are not appealing to me.

Apple and Android can be described as being on the ‘opposite ends of the spectrum’. In this weeks lecture we were able to delve into the world of technology and analyse the difference between a ‘closed application‘ and a ‘generative platform‘. A closed application represents Apple, Apple products are designed in such a way that limits user access to software and operating system and allows manufactures to retain predominant control. For example each software update is automatically programmed by the existing manufacturer, the user is unable to select certain parts of the update another would be the creation of applications. Apple must approve of its function and make in order for it to progress into the app store. Generative platform coincides with Android, its gives flexibility and innovation to the user. It allows the user to have choice in what they want to do and how they want to modify their device.

Since researching into ‘Wearable Technology‘ as my chosen media platform, I looked at the Apple iWatch and Android wear. This YouTube video explains both types of watches:

From researching the difference between Apple and Android and then comparing the information on each watch, I found that both appear to be exponentially similar. They appear to be locked applications, as they both have software and apps built in to aid to the users everyday needs. They are both generative in the sense that you can customise the clock face as well as the wrist strap, personally I think that these watches defy the barrier between Android and Apple due to their similarities.

Although on the other hand the ‘Pebble Watch‘, an interactive watch that is compatible with both iOS and Android. Many would argue that the Pebble Time Smartwatch is better than both the Android and Apple watch, one reason being that it is able to be compatible with various ecosystems which appeal to a mass market rather than a niche market. This shows that the Pebble Watch is a generative platform, which is preferred over a closed application.

It is interesting when comparing PCs to Macs and Android to iPhones. The general public prefer a locked platform, although when it comes to wearables a generative platform is preferred and is leaves the flexibility to connect one type of technology to the other.

Some food for thought

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OMG is that me?

Posting, sharing and commenting are all a part of the social networking world. It is how we communicate with each other and keep up-to-date with the latest news concerning our friends, family and even celebrities. But did you know everything that is put onto social media is then owned by that certain platform?

When it comes to reading the terms and conditions, I will admit I think it is the biggest waste of time.

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Although until reading about the importance of copyright, I discovered that the terms and conditions are actually a vital part of signing up to each media platform.

Copyright is the legal description of ownership over an individuals work and its creativity, whether it be a book, artwork, phrase or song. The first sign of copyright appeared in 1710 for the Statue of Queen Anne, which granted the owners monopoly for 14 years after publication. The modern foundation of copyright is based around the Berne Convention of 1886 which allowed writers monopoly 50 years after the authors death.

When creating profiles on social media platforms, copyright laws and legislations for the website appear in the terms and conditions. I was intrigued and researched into Facebook and Instagram, to find out what various terms and conditions cover. I first looked at Facebook and it stated:

“You grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it. “ – Facebook Terms of Service

Instagram expressed:

“Instagram does NOT claim ANY ownership rights in the text, files, images, photos, video, sounds, musical works, works of authorship, applications, or any other materials (collectively, “Content”) that you post on or through the Instagram Services. By displaying or publishing (“posting”) any Content on or through the Instagram Services, you hereby grant to Instagram a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free, worldwide, limited license to use, modify, delete from, add to, publicly perform, publicly display, reproduce and translate such Content, including without limitation distributing part or all of the Site in any media formats through any media channels, except Content not shared publicly (“private”) will not be distributed outside the Instagram Services”.- Instagram Terms of Use

In order to begin using either of the social media networks, terms and conditions must be agreed to. Therefore you are now are permitting the network admin to either use or filter what is being posted. In a sense this can be used to protect the identity of social media as it eliminates the risk of being a platform for violence and abuse.

The modernisation of society is heavily based around the technological movement. Without copyright, there would not be a platform of security either in the ideas you create or the posts you share online.

Maybe next time think twice about agreeing to the TNC’s.

Expect the unexpected.

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Preconceived emotions and fears have the ability to drive a barrier between two compatible beings.

It diminishes the likely hood of growth and acceptance

Nineteen year old Luke, met his former girlfriend during second semester of his law degree. What was perceived as an “instant click”, slowly began to fade as the couple began to consistently argue. After several “makeups and breakups”, Luke began to realise that his former partner was a product of her environment; the idea that rebelling against the barriers that were enforced upon her was the right thing to do. From ‘love at first sight’ to ‘civil friendship’, in a “blink of an eye” things can change.

Orange or Orange?

In science, experiments are conducted in order to decipher the relationship between cause and effect. When the media release an advertisement or image relating to a current issue, society view and react.

During my last year of high school, for my Society and Culture major I chose to study ‘the commodification of breast cancer research’. Sitting through this weeks lecture, the topic of discussion was Semiotics. As Sue began to explain the concept of semiotics and showed different examples, I realised that this concept can be related to the way Breast Cancer is advertised and how different sorts of people interpret and react to what they see. Looking at the example of the Dior ad staring Kate Moss, and the discussion that was brewing in the lecture theatre I became inspired to write about Breast Cancer advertising.

Although before I begin, I understand that Breast Cancer is a serious issue for women in Australia. Breast Cancer advertising is insightful and successful in conveying the importance of the disease and I completely support its effects on society. Therefore my example is not to fault Breast Cancer campaigns or offend, it is something that I have found from prior and current research.

So, lets get into semiotics. Semiotics can be broken down into ‘denotations’ and ‘connotations, which simply is the literal figure in an image and the way society interpret what they see.

Breast Cancer is one of the leading diseases in Australian women, October is the month of Breast Cancer. This is a time where society support and further promote Breast Cancer awareness.

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The denotations of this image convey women uniting ‘together’ to overcome Breast Cancer which coincides with the slogan, “Together, Connect. Communicate. Conquer. For a future free of Breast Cancer”. I feel that this image portrays the ‘inter-racial’ support amongst women. The Pink ribbon and lipstick reflect one of the biggest Breast Cancer Foundations which is the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Connotations vary, for some this can be a symbol for empowerment and unity for women and for others this can be a sexual innuendo.

In a blog by Melissa Tankard Reist she quotes pervious tweet from a former Breast Cancer patient “My ‘donation’ to research in the form of malignant flesh should not be devalued, by my cancer being reduced to a Benny Hill punchline.” Throughout her blog she expresses that ‘sexed-up campaigns’ or advertisements are offending women who have suffered from Breast Cancer as its connotations promote support for Breasts rather than the lives of women.

Ideologies and worldview very much affect semiotics. For instance feminists advocate for equal rights for women, when a feminist views this photograph instant connotations would relate to the sexualisation of women. Emily O’Malley expresses “These ads don’t even contain information about symptoms, prevention and treatment”. Breast Cancer is very much driven by Feminism, as it was one of the ways Breast Cancer was brought into light.

This is just one view from a minority in society. It can vary vastly from a cancer patient to a teenage boy, each individual have their own opinions and attitudes influenced by culture, age, gender etc.

Personally I feel that this example is a sufficient representation of semiotics.

Feel free to leave your opinions and thoughts.

Technology Overload.

As Kenneth Slessor once said “Time flows past them like a hundred yachts”. Time is inevitable and continues to transcend, thus as evolution progresses societal and technological change occur in order to coincide with humanities growth. This is formally explained through Marshall McLuhan’s theory “the medium is the message”.

After several days I have finally grasped this concept. McLuhan breaks down this into two parts; the ‘medium’ and the ‘message’. McLuhan first explains the ‘message’, describing it as being “the change of scare or pace or pattern” that a new innovation brings into society. He brings to light that the ‘message’ is not the ‘medium’ itself where as it is more a reflection of societies attitude towards and encourages us too look beyond the obvious and seek the unknown. An example would be documentaries, whilst it is a form of entertainment and education it also serves as a platform for the individual and showcase their lives to a wider audience giving access to a micro perspective rather than a macro perspective such as magazine ‘gossip’. The ‘medium’ is how we tangibly communicate this ‘message’ and showcasing change such as radio or television.5-6_party_meme

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Due to the evolution of society both culturally and socially this concept of ‘medium’ needs to progressively ‘advance’, in order to coincide with the modernization of humanity. Therefore affecting the ‘message’ that is conveyed through these significant creations. Telecommunication began as an experiment creating ‘electrochemical’ telegraphy, which was able to convey a message comprised of Latin numerals and numbers that was sent a few kilometers away. Progressively through time the telephone was introduced and allowed communication between different cities and eventually other parts of the world. In 1973 the first mobile phone was invented which was a branch from the traditional telephone, as it became portable and eased the way communicating occurred.

When comparing the very first mobile phone to todays latest Samsung or iPhone 6, its evolution is remarkable. The latest iPhone now incorporates a camera, GPS and the Internet, which highlights the convergence of different media technologies. Some would say that the ‘iPhone makes life easier’ as it has numerous different functions that apply to our everyday lives, and lessen the gadgets we need to carry in order to complete daily tasks.

Until looking into Marshall McLuhan’s theory of “medium is the message”, I have never formally noticed the drastic changes such mediums have throughout society and how each one conveys a different message and brings to light the ‘non-obvious’. “Control over change would seem to consist in moving not with it but ahead of it. Anticipation gives the power to deflect and control force” (p.199)

Is it really only the media?

‘Likes’ and ‘Comments’, ‘Friends’ or ‘Followers’ are perceived as a criteria on who thinks you are attractive or agrees with what you’re posting and your popularity in your micro and macro world.

Who knew that these components of social media could create such hype amongst society? Being a teenager myself and recently stepping into the world of ‘adulthood’, I thought there would be a difference between who did and didn’t care about the attention they received on social media. But I was wrong. I found that even mature adults care as much as a fifteen-year-old girl does about their profile picture.

Recently my thirteen-year-old sister pestered my parents to allow her to have Facebook. Since she has ‘connected’ to the online world it has made me notice the amounts of children who are now signing up to various forms of social media.

Over the past week I have been observing her behaviour both online and offline to see if there truly is a difference between children being active on social media. It’s been notable that her reliance of her phone has increased and the way she presents herself in public and online has created her to become more self-conscious.

Studies show that those who care about what others think of them show an increase of people with low self-esteem in comparison to those who have high self-esteem take the time to upload photos and continuously post. Due to this reliance of others opinions, there is an increase anxiety and create the desire to constantly update and refresh social media in order to keep ‘up to date’ in the social world.

An article from The Telegraph states that the “greatest proportion of Internet activity takes place when children reach 11 years of age”. At such a young age, children are learning to interact with both people they know and have never met online. A recent report on A Current Affair talks about a young girl befriending someone she had never met, later being killed by this unknown. By the media showing these heartbreaking stories are they suggesting to society to be paranoid of all friends they have on Facebook?

Child psychologist Dr Richard Woolfson states, “Social media has removed the barriers between a young person’s public and private self”. In order to harness and lower the frequency of cyber-bullying between young children and the rate of depression and anxiety caused by social media, common forms of media such a television shows should promote a larger restriction of children on social media websites.

Violence and abuse is often linked to what adolescents are exposed to on common forms of media, such as the Bugler case. Studies showed that social media did not influence these actions majorly, whereas emotional damage is what was a large factor of the murder.

Overall we need to analyse whether it is solely the medias fault in not obtain higher restrictions or promoting an increased use of technology amongst young children or if it societies interpretation and use of such websites and films.