Analyzing the Media

Ms. Gray 1st block

What I think the “Media” is and what I think it means to be “Media Literate”

Media is defined as the main means of mass communication (especially television, radio, newspapers, and the Internet) regarded collectively. Media today is used in many different ways: there are television channels such as CNN and Fox news that use media to relay news to people, social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, which are used by everyday people use to communicate and relay information to each other, and radio stations that play popular music. As election time is quickly approaching, politicians have started campaigning through various types of media, including: newspaper and magazine advertisements, commercials, interviews, and news coverage on TV and radio, and by creating and managing websites to endorse themselves. The media can be used for good, to inform people, however it can also be used poorly, to spread misinformation and propaganda to people whose only source of information is the media. In order for people to be able to tell the difference between good and bad media, they must be media literate. Being media literate comes with years of being exposed to the various types of media both good and bad. Knowing the difference between good and bad media is not the only key part of being media literate. To be media literate today, you must know how to use social media effectively because it has become such a large part of our lives. This includes things like only sharing personal information with people you trust, and keeping some details private even though our first instinct might be to post them on social media.

24 Hours With or Without Social Media

24 Hours With or Without Social Media

With social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat accessible right at our fingertips, most teenagers these days are constantly on social media. Whether they are tweeting, posting new pictures on Instagram, or snapchatting their friends, we are constantly connected. Giving up social media for twenty four hours was very difficult. I changed my phones settings to not give me notifications from social media apps so that I would be less tempted to check them. Even after doing this, I knew that people were sending me messages and snapchatting me which made it very difficult to not check to see what my friends were saying or talking about. After getting home I put my phone in a place I would not see it unless I was looking for it so I could focus on doing homework without constantly being distracted by wanting to check my phone, but I ended up being more distracted because I was constantly thinking about what was going on with my friends and family. After the twenty four hours ended I frantically checked everything that I had muted for the past day.
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Fact Checking Activity

In a recent interview, Donald Trump claimed that the United States was the highest taxed country in the world. Politifact’s “Truth-O-Meter” rated his statement as false, meaning that it was a blatant lie. Even if they do not always tell lies, politicians always try to bend the truth to make themselves or their party look better, so it is always better to take what they say with a grain of salt. I generally believe most news and facts that are reported by new sources. I do not usually feel the need to double check facts that are given by the news since it is their job to provide credible information, even if it is sometimes biased. I accept most facts that people state as true, which can be dangerous because people may be talking about something they have no idea about, or they could just be flat out lying. Double checking facts is important, but it is impossible to double check every “fact” that we hear.

Life of a Prole

The passage is somewhat similar to what society is like today. In today’s society many people base their lives off of societal norms, like going through four years of college, getting married in your late twenty’s, having kids and eventually settling down. I believe that social media, sports, movies, and reality TV play a part of ‘controlling’ society. They take attention away from major issues that affect our world today. Most people would rather watch something entertaining that watch the news and learn more about the world around them.

Failed Rebellions

These rebellions were powerful and carried meaning for many reasons. One reason they were so powerful is that they were lead by normal people and were started to help the general population and not the one percent or royalty. The ideas and moral behind these rebellions is what lead them to having such a large impact.

People were inspired to act because they were being treated unfairly. The people that started the movements wanted to help others that they saw were being mistreated.

Edward Snowden and Winston/O'Brien

Winston is similar to Edward Snowden because they shared common beliefs and goals. Winston and both worked for secret parts of the government that they believed were corrupt. They both were in charge of something that the general public did not even know existed. While the way they revealed the corruptness of the government was different, they both had the same intentions. O’Brien is not very similar to Snowden because O’Brien does everything the government tells him to do and has no intention to rebel. Winston and Snowden are different in that Snowden was successful in revealing the corruptness of the government and exposing its secrets, while Winston was caught before he could make anything happen.

O'Brien and Winston: Victims or Villains of and for the Government

In my opinion, O’Brien is a villain because even though he is brainwashed by Big Brother and is forced to do what the government wants him to. At the end of the day he is the one that turned in Winston and is the one that put Winston through all of the torture. He still had a choice with all his actions and he chose to brainwash Winston. I believe that Winston was a victim. He realized that what the government was doing was wrong, and he tried to help everyone in Oceania. Even though he was doing something he was taught was wrong, he tried to help people anyways.

Reflection One

My views on media literacy have changed by me realizing that there is more to media literacy that just knowing what to post on social media. Media literacy encompasses various types of media including news outlets, television, music and social media. Learning what we can trust and cannot trust from social media has been a major lesson that I have learned this semester. I have also learned to make connections between the different media outlets to better inform myself on what is going on in the world around me. This class was different from other classes that I took because we learned more about the real world than other language arts classes. Language arts classes I’ve taken in the past all were about learning to write better or learning grammar and rhetoric, however this class has been about learning to analyze and read into the information that is all around us. The class could be made better by analyzing and reading more books and literature for each unit.

Reflection Two

Social media has consumed most of the younger generation in today’s society. We spend all of our time worrying about what to post on social media and what other people are posting and we don’t spend enough time enjoying the world around us. To ensure that we don’t become too dependent on social media and technology in general we need to learn to live without our smartphones and laptops and computers. We can control this addiction just like any other addiction. If we slowly wean ourselves off of our reliance on technology, we can become less dependent on it. Doing the activity where we stayed away from social media for twenty four hours was more difficult than it should have been, and I do not consider myself super addicted to social media. This shows just how addicted some of us are to technology. If people do not learn to curb their addictions to social media, we will become even more disconnected as a society. Despite our addiction to it, we can use social media for good. It allows us to be connected with our friends and family even if they live across the globe on another continent. It is also a very good medium for dispersing news and other information. When wielded properly, social media can be a very powerful tool, but by becoming addicted to it, we have limited its effectiveness.