Media Literacy

by Madison Ohaus

What is media and media literacy?

Media comes in all manners of different forms such as television, magazines, internet, video games, music, and many other various forms. Media has been the means of mass communication for years and years amongst youth. It’s very rare to find a teenager without a device that would contain some form of media. The most common forms of media ranges from cell phones to the internet. Media may be spread anywhere, but more rapidly on the internet, such as viral videos have. Media has been a vital asset to the world as a growing nation, as it keeps those in the world in touch amongst one another.

Media literacy however, is the ability to break down, assess, and produce media. Being media literate allows for people to understand and comprehend the surplus of information being thrown at them. If people are media literate, they can develop different skills that are substantial to their everyday lives. Such as if people were able to recognize lies in the media, which are very common, they may be able to recognize them amongst their peers. Media literacy has ultimately become critically essential within the 21st century.

Media may come out as positively or as negatively interpreted information. That’s why it’s essential for, especially today’s youth, to have media literacy. Media literacy will help people determine which is which, and what they may perceive each “scoop” as. Media literacy allows for a range of crucial abilities and knowledge about the masses of media in the world.

V for Vendetta

V's Speech

In the author’s script of V’s speech for “V for Vendetta” (1988) by Alan Moore, writer and actor, depicts a brilliant mastermind with a concept of moralistic proportions as he seeks to change the people’s perspective of the governmental system; “But if you what I see, if you feel as I feel, and if you would seek as I seek, then I ask you to stand beside me one year from tonight, outside the gates of Parliament, and together we shall give them a fifth of November that shall never, ever be forgot”. V juxtaposes the government’s and the people’s audacity and sudden complicity to act without thinking of the others’ accountability, “Well certainly there are those more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable, but again truth be told, if you’re looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror”, as his speech was directed towards the public people. Firstly, V illuminates the fact that the public is blinded by assurances and fear fueled promises from the government; then he created and destroyed an object of symbolism by destroying the Old Bailey, “Last night I destroyed the Old Bailey, to remind this country of what it has forgotten.”; lastly, he asks the people to accompany him in his crusade in a plan to remind the government that they must be afraid of the people they had “promised to protect”. V’s tone had changed from clam and phlegmatic when he had introduced himself to the public, but then it had morphed into that of a determined and antagonistic tone when he spoke of the faults of the government and that of the people’s; V had hoped to convince the public of the dangers within the government as they feed off the never ending fear of the people and the fear within themselves that cause them to conform from it.


Anti-hero Macbeth & Spiderman

Macbeth was a very malleable man; easily led to sin and never really thought for himself, until on the brink of self-destruction. Macbeth had brought about his own downfall due to his ambitions and determinations being manipulated and perceived through his wife and the three witches' eyes. Ultimately, Macbeth had led himself astray in his first act of murdering Duncan, leading up to the series of events to his undoing.

In the first Spiderman movie by , Peter Parker led a double life as Spiderman in a society that was controlled by crime and misconduct. The press for the city in which Spiderman had sworn to protect began creating scandalous headlines painting him as a menace. Spiderman had started being viewed as a villanous idol by the media, namely by children. The actual villain in the movie was a charismatic and well loved man, which did not help Spiderman's case, as he was known as the complete opposite. Spiderman had evidently overthrown his villain, as most heroes do, and was soon known as the "friendly neighborhood spiderman" again.

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Media Manipulation

British Villains

In the Superbowl commerical ad "British Villains 'Rendevous'" by Jaguar, automobile company and buisness, presents three similarly well-dressed british men driving the same brand of vehicle. This commercial features actors Tom Hiddleston, Ben Kingsley, and Mark Strong, commonly known for their roles as well-beloved villains. The men in this video are represented as wealthy and powerful individuals, such as each man walking into a mansion at the end of the commercial and riding in expensive devices. The audience targeted is that of both genders; the automobile for the male eye, and the attractive men for the women. The commercial itself implies that just because wealthy and extremely attractive men drive this car, that the audience should drive one as well.
British Villains - 2015 One Show Automobile Advertising of the Year Finalist

Social Media and Technology

Social Media and Techonology

Social media and technology's impacts on society today have increased rapidly over the century due to the attention everyone gives to them. People would rather record a concert or an otherwise special moment in their lives rather than live in the moment. Social technology was originally created to bring people more together, such as people who lived at a distance. Rather, it has distanced people who might have lived right down the street to one another. People have become incredibly disconnected as a result of media sites such as twitter, facebook, snapchat, etc. There are multiple ways to only use social media conservatively instead of constantly. Such as putting away phones or any digital devices at certain hours; even for just a short time would help in the long run. Getting outside more would help; instead of taking pictures and blogging about how nice the weather is, it would be better to go out and enjoy it. There are ways to combat social technology addictiveness such as: turning off your phone for maybe an hour or two, read a book, go swimming, or draw something, anything to keep away from your phone for at least one hour a day. Over the weekend, I usually spend up to 6-8 hours on technology including my phone, consoles, or my computer. In the duration of these times, I would block out the rest of the world and wouldn’t even consider going outside or talking to my friends, unless it was to be on my phone. Taking into consideration of how much time I spend using technology, I would need to contemplate how I could use it more in moderation. I could ask my parents or one of my friends to hide any devices I own for a few hours and go do something else for a change. When people who use technology actively are without it, they usually become either quiescent or become better at handling their outside lives. It’s difficult to ignore technology and social media entirely if someone’s profession or lifestyle is circled around it. Such as working in an office or even perhaps being a teacher or student. Using social media in moderation is more important in these situations due to the extended exposure of technology on a daily basis. Ways to avoid the excessive use of social media if you were a student or a teacher could be everyone having to put their phones in the front room at the beginning of class. That way, everyone would pay more attention during class and have at least one hour away from social media. Everyone who has or has had a phone has been a slave to the media. Facebook, twitter, and text messages are constantly buzzing, making people feel obliged to check them every second of the day. People would rather text someone that’s sitting right next to them instead of just talking face to face with them. Everyday, people lose self-worth and their sense of well-bring over extended use of social media. Measuring someone’s worth over some meaningless number of followers or likes is abhorrent.

Media Literacy

Media Literacy in 2015

My first impression of media literacy was nothing short of impressed; I thought it was going to be just like any other literature course I’ve taken in the past years. After the first few assignments, I already had an inkling about the impacts of social media on today’s society, but I was more well-informed about the issue. A few things we’ve learned that I’ll take with me through college is when we studied about the issues that we wished the news media would cover more. Such as issues like gay marriages, animal abuse, racial discriminations and the like instead of things like “who was murdered today”. I learned more about these issues taking this course in the few months that we have had than I would have watching the news for 10 years. Some things I wish we had done over the course would include more artsy assignments, as I am an art student and those types of assignments put me in my comfort zone, more writing assignments, even though we have had a lot already writing practice is very beneficial, or if we had more speaking projects, as it would have helped prepare us for the final. The other literature courses that I have taken haven’t been very fascinating as they were always about books or reading boring old novels that no one has ever heard of. The books we read this semester were more of stand outs in those grueling novel lineups. I found 1984 to be very comical, which was a unique subject to find in a school environment, as school is known as boring and solemn.

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