The Effects of Media

by Teja Gummadi

Media Literacy

The media is all around us. It ranges from the news stations like CNN to the gossip magazines that are seen at the check-out aisle at the grocery store. The media is easily accessible and can be seen on internet-accessible devices like phones or computers, or on the TV from news stations or even on paper in magazines and newspapers. The media attempts to inform ordinary citizens of events that have occurred and their thoughts on these events to keep customers entertained. Along with media from news reporters is social media which is from ordinary people to others and on events that may be completely unnecessary or extremely important. Social media news can range from what someone ate to a person’s views on why the bombings on Paris occurred and how to stop ISIS. The media has an important role in society as it can change the beliefs of people and the way people see a situation such as ISIS using social media to draw in new followers in different countries.

Being media literate is knowing how to use the information from the media to create a change such as in SeaWorld. SeaWorld was standing idly by as multiple trainers were being killed by the whales and took no blame for the events that occurred. People after hearing about this stopped going to SeaWorld and decreased the revenue of SeaWorld. These people understood how to make a change and now SeaWorld is smaller as a result of media. Media literacy shows the understanding of people to begin to stop companies from doing or getting away with illegal or immoral actions and the media has helped everyone have a say in this.

Social Media 24-Hour Challenge

Social media does not have a major role in my life with the exception of YouTube. I made the decision to not take the social media challenge because I use YouTube every day for around 5 or 6 hours and I did not want to go without YouTube for a day. If I deleted the YouTube app off my phone, there is a good chance that I would succeed in the challenge, as I do not have an account for Twitter, Instagram, Vine, or any other major form of social media except Facebook, which I personally have not used in at least 2 months. Others, however, seemingly cannot live without checking all these different forms of social media constantly throughout the day.

Social media has an extremely impactful role on society because most news that people see comes from social media. One example of this is the lottery winners for the Powerball earlier this week. People found out that others had won from posts on social media and then the Powerball company later confirmed this. Social media can be used to convince others to do something that they were hesitant to do such as during a day last winter when there was barely a quarter inch of snow on the ground so Gwinnett county was not going to shut down school for the day, but then there was an outrage on Twitter and Gwinnett county was trending so the county decided to close down for the day. Honestly there was almost no reason for school to be cancelled but the influence of social media caused the county to reverse their decision and succumb to the pressure of Twitter.


Media messages have been around since even before television and radio were invented. Advertising billboards have been around since highways were invented and advertising have developed some unfortunate normalities. Pictures of women looking sexy and vulnerable are now incorporated in about half the advertisements broadcasted, especially in the United States. Unfortunately, this style of advertising is extremely effective for most men, so a change is not very likely to occur anytime soon. Men like to be in control and dominate and these pictures make them feel like buying the product will bring them to control of all women. Personally, this style of advertising does not cause me to have interest in the product. I prefer products that are statistically superior to the competitors, but the thought process of advertisers is that these advertisements have been working from the beginning, so why change, and they don’t make a change. I think society has been too adapted to notice the unfairness towards women in these advertisements because it has been going on like this, so together, we have to create the change that women deserve. I am excited about what Dove has been doing to try to change the norm of advertising. They have become the voice of change for women, and their commercials showing how the women on the billboards aren’t even real was a surprise to most. They are computer generated people and all people should be shown as they are, not just as what men want to see to buy the product.

Fact Checking the Media

Donald Trump has been portrayed to hate Muslims by some of his "comments," but in no official statement has Trump ever said that he is against the religious believers. He has said that he thinks we should limit the number of Muslim immigrants who can enter the country, but he has also said the same for Mexicans, so Trump is really just against most immigration. The media has spun the comments from Trump to improperly show his beliefs on subjects and I am now going to start double checking all the facts of the media before repeating what is reported.

Shay's Rebellion

Shays’ Rebellion directly poked at post-American Revolution’s high intensity of internal conflict that was previously hidden beneath the surface. As a result of the rebellion, the founding fathers realized the problem of weak Federal authority over states’ power written in the Articles of Confederation. This was the first major rebellion of post-American Revolution. High taxes, irresponsible government, and limited freedom to assembly leaded to the american revolution against the British Parliament. However, in this case, the unresponsive governor of Massachusetts and carelessness of the other states lowered citizens’ trust in the young government of United States.

Daniel Shays was able to inspire people because the government was corrupt and the farmers and poorer people were being taxed excessively and were not able to pay these harsh taxes. They had seen what the government was doing to those that were unable to pay their taxes, taking away their land and homes, and were inspired to revolt against the government. Shays led a group of veterans who viewed this new government as extremely similar to the one they had just fought to secede from and Shays inspired these men to fight the oppression.

When the American Revolution ended, people were looking forward to the freedom and prosperity they believed independence would bring. However, the reality of post-war were composed of only economic recession, weak Federal government, and scarcity of resources. Daniel Shays used people’s strong emotion against the state to filed a petition for fiscal relief. Increased number of protesters joined the rebellion group under social influence.

O'Brien Victim or Villiain?

In 1984, Winston sees O'Brien as a villain who is completely responsible for the pain from the torture, but in reality, O'Brien is another pawn of the Party. O'Brien is forced to do the torturing otherwise he will be in the opposite position and he will be tortured. I see O'Brien as a victim to the Party because I believe that he was being truthful in everything he said to Winston that day that Winston visited O'Brien's house. O'Brien is forced to do the bidding of a system that he truly wants to overthrow and this makes him a victim rather than the villain he is portrayed to be.

Reflecting on Media Literacy

At the beginning of this semester, I thought that being media literacy was just being able to decipher and understand the various forms of media (I.e. television shows, social networks, news, etc.). I know believe that being media literate involves a few other things. To be media literate you not only must be able to decipher the forms of media, nut you must utilize media for the good things and be able to prohibit your use of media so that it won’t negatively affect you. To be media literate, you must understand the importance of media in this world and how it connects various parts of the world together.

In this class, I learned that there is a great world outside of media related things. I’ve learned ample reasons that being richly subdued in media, especially social media, can result in one missing numerous opportunities to take part in real world activities with people that are physically there. I also learned different tactics that the media uses to manipulate its users (ex: appealing to certain groups in commercials)

This language arts class was different than from all of the previous language arts courses I’ve taken thus far. In this class, our goal wasn’t really to dig deeper into the intricacies and different forms of the English language, but to plunge into what is society and things that affect one. These things include corrupt governments (dystopias) and how media influence citizens (commercials, social media, etc.). This class felt more like social studies class or philosophy course than a language arts class. We went deep into concepts and morals displayed in populations around the globe.

In the future, this class could be taught with maybe less work and more discussion. Work on concepts is a bit rhetorical sometimes as we are basically restating ideas that we all hold, but instead just putting them onto paper.

Reflection on Prince Ea

I agree with Prince Ea in that we have an unhealthy relationship with technology. Social media was built to bring the world together, to give people a platform where could contact each other and share pieces of their lives to people that they wouldn't have the opportunity to see. Instead, it has backfired to give the opposite effect. There are some people with hundreds of friends on Facebook who have no one to talk to in person. People have become so obsessed with this social media image that they shut out the real people in their lives. Social Media has given people the opportunity to hide behind their screens; it's an escape from reality. Because of this, students now days have shorter attention spans. I've also noticed that a some of the people in my school have a hard time speaking to someone face to face since they are not uncomfortable with the silence that occurs naturally in conversation. Social media has made my generation antisocial. The number one thing I would tip I would give from preventing social media from controlling one's life is to participate in a sport or some other type of activity. A sport allows a person to distance oneself from social media, and forces him to learn to communicate. Sports tend to create REAL friends and REAL conversations. If my generation doesn't learn to separate themselves from technology, then we will have a generation of loners. I imagine it as the futuristic people in the movie WALL-E. Those people spend their whole lives alone, and unaware of how tragic their situation is. Now, I don't think the solution is to delete social media. There are some groups out there that want to get rid of all social media forever like it is some sort of black plague. I think that social media gives us amazing possibilities; we just have to learn how to limit ourselves. I think that if addicts filled their lives with more activities, they wouldn't have such a hard time turning their phones off.