Friday, April 17, 2009

Well, it looks like this is my last post for this class. I don't know if I'll continue this blog but I'll do another one eventually. After this class I'm sure I'll be "giving in" to a lot of things or else, as Vegor says, I'm an idiot ;). I don't think of myself as technologically savvy at all--besides email I have a facebook account and that's pretty much it ha. Especially in my generation I need to keep up on the times; I'm sure I'll start using Twitter and then wait for the next thing like we discussed in class. This kind of knowledge wasn't necessary even just years ago, and our parents didn't have to worry about the internet, but that is where our world is headed. EVERYTHING happens on the internet, because of the internet, for the internet, etc. and even though with my "media fast" I didn't feel like I missed too much, I can't afford to not keep up!

It's been a great semester everyone! Have a great summer :)

Friday, April 10, 2009

Culture Jamming

I really liked the chapter on culture jamming and it's concept...Errin brought up the point that culture jamming is putting reality back in the place where unreality currently resides. It's amazing how readily we accept this "unreality" constantly from the media, and it's only when we see advertisements such as the ones from Adbusters that we truly realize how unrealistic these ideas and ads really are. The AdBusters website ( talks more about the aim of culture jamming and has links to all of their magazines, which are all pretty interesting. I also found this clip of the founder of AdBusters magazine on CNN talking about American consumerism and "Buy Nothing Day" instead of "Black Friday" like we discussed in class.

Friday, April 3, 2009


I went to the Mormon Beat session of the Mormonism in the Public Mind Conference which featured four representatives from different newspapers talking about mormonism in the news. The rep from the Boston Globe was talking about the role the internet is playing in newspaper circulation, since people can just look online for any news. The influence of the internet has hurt circulation, but he thinks that even though some newspapers will cease to exist, newspapers won't altogether cease to exist.

One of the most interesting points that was brought up was that blogs are being used in the newspapers. I guess I didn't realize that blogs are public domains; I guess I'm like the other people they were talking about who think all their little chats are private. The reps were talking about how they use blogs to determine what people are talking about and what they are interested in. The thing that surprised me the most was that they actually quote some of the blogs for stories, if they feel that the sources are reliable and have credibility and are academic based. I think it's crazy how our seemingly "little chats" to one another can provide newspapers with material, and that blogs can be a credible source of information. Who knew?

Friday, March 27, 2009

Going Green

The other day we were discussing the question, how do we know if corporations really care about the values they are marketing (such as recycling) or if the choices they make are based on monetary gain? I was at Disneyland over spring break and I saw the common theme of "going green", and they coupled it with Kermit the Frog; they had all sorts of merchandise plastered with Kermit the Frog and the slogan Go Green. On one hand, Disneyland has always had recycling cans so that makes me think they have always had that value, but I wonder if they are "jumping on the bandwagon" of going green for a little more profit. I don't know. But let me bring up the non-profit organizations. Their very title suggests that they aren't in it for the money...what is their motivation? Could it really be their values? Anyone?

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Did somebody say McDonalds?

Just sitting here in my room I could probably count about a hundred logos...Chap Stick, Disneyland, UVU, Jansport, Silver, DVD, Pepsi, etc. When we were kids, even before we could read, we were able to recognize tons of logos; we knew that the golden arches = chicken nuggets. This was mostly thanks to television, and the food and toy marketers who targeted us, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. I think it would be awesome to have a company that millions of people could explain who you are and what you do as soon as they see your logo. Especially with logos such as the Nike "swoosh," it's just assumed that the general public knows what that represents. Then there are logos (even ones with words) that aren't as easily recognized. For example, when the drink goyin was new and first started advertising, the only thing that would be on a sign or a billboard would be that name. I finally googled it to see what it was, and did the same thing with Orange Soda. I think that sometimes being mysterious is a good marketing strategy, until your company or product becomes more well known. But just for some more examples, I think most of the following logos are ones that are quickly and easily recognized, almost "common knowledge."

Closing Remarks

Here are some of the comments I was going to make in class this past week and didn't get a chance to :) Just a last word on gender roles and race representation in the media before we move on. A few classes ago, Errin was talking about driving up to Salt Lake and noticing how different races were represented on the billboards; they really aren't. We discussed that maybe this was because the advertiser's target market is the population majority in this area. The other day I was driving to Provo from Spanish Fork and I noticed a sign for the Provo Towne Center Mall that said, "Welcome to the mall, mom." and another sign for a carpet cleaning service that said something to the effect of "Clean Carpets, Happy Women." If I wasn't in this class I really wouldn't have thought anything about it, but my first thought was, ok with these advertisements the mall is targeting "moms" and the carpet cleaning billboard could be targeting men by saying they're wives will be happy if they get the carpets cleaned, because it's assumed that they women already naturally want they're carpets cleaned but it's the men who are holding them back. My second thought was what is being said about women through this advertising? How are they being represented? These signs could be saying that all women are shopaholics and "clean freaks", and that being a homemaker and a mom is their primary gender role.

We also discussed different TV shows and what percentage of other races are represented in the casting of these shows, and what roles they play. I couldn't help but think of Survivor, and how every season they seem to have x number of black people, Asians, and men and women. Sometimes when I watch these shows or see certain advertisements (for example, the promotional materials for UVU) I feel like the producers are trying to meet a "quota of diversity," whether this is the case or not. I know our community has a lot of diversity, but sometimes it feels like this diversity isn't represented accurately.

Someone also made the comment this week about an actor not being cast because of the color of his skin, despite his experience. I started thinking about a case that I think is just the opposite of this. In Much Ado About Nothing, Denzel Washington plays the part of Don Pedro and the part of his brother (illegitimate brother) Don John is played by Keanu Reeves. Obviously, the two aren't brothers, but in a discussion I had with a friend, she said that Washington got the part not because of the color of his skin but because he's a great actor and played the part of Don Pedro well.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Before I watched the hip-hop documentary, I had never thought of hip-hop being a culture. I just thought of it as a style of music--one that I like. Even though I've recognized that the lyrics are mainly about sex, drugs, control, violence, criminal activity, domination, objectification of women, etc., I think I've been desensitized by it and it really never occurred to me that these things they rap about really happen. I was born and raised in Utah county, and I have never been exposed to anything like that and it's really hard for me to imagine that kind of lifestyle, where people just accept these activities as "just the way life is".

The only experience I've ever really had with different cultures and colors is when I went to Manhattan a couple months ago with a friend. When we arrived in the early morning and got on the subway, we were the only white people and the only females on the train. I don't consider myself racist, but I've never been in a position like that before and all of the sudden I had some stereotypes running through my head and I could feel the same things being directed toward me. Me and the people on the subway looked different, we talked different, we dressed different, and we probably had very different backgrounds. You can't help but notice people who are different from you, culturally and people of other colors-which is a good thing! I don't think we should be blind to color. But there's a difference between that and being racist. But the thing is, I don't know how to change people's thinking. I don't know how to fix racism, but we as society need to figure out how to recognize and embrace differences, and work on a ways that will maybe help fix the "system".