Category: BCM110

What does Media Convergence Mean To Me?

First off, it took me ages to actually understand what the term “Media Convergence” meant. So off the bat what it means to me is a whole lot of confusion and head scratching. But after searching up in the net the meaning which is: “the merging of mass communication outlets – print, television, radio, the Internet along with portable and interactive technologies through various digital media platforms”

I now understand.

So this blog posts delves into what the convergence of media today means to me. How it affects me. What I like. What I dislike. How I have experienced it. What I think about it.

Media convergence has allowed for a range of entirely new forms of content to emerge from industries, services and work practices. With the development of technologies in different platforms and mediums, we are able to have access to a wide array of different media, as well as live in a world that media technologies have in a lot of cases, made easier and more convenient. The converging media has allowed for media professionals to display content through different mediums which results in more people seeing it. It allows for the audience to connect and be more involved in media which enhances the way they experience it

A personal aspect of the converging media that I like and appreciate is how artists can share their work. Being in a band myself and releasing music, it is obvious that without the converging media being what it is, our music would’ve had no way of reaching the attention of as much people as it did. Another aspect everyone who uses social media can appreciate is the ability to share our lives online through being able to post photos and videos on Facebook, Instagram and other social media sites.

Some disadvantages that I have observed from the convergence of media is how the ever changing and evolving technologies make it hard for people with a lack of knowledge and skill to take advantages of this new media. In the same light, the changing and evolving technologies make it easier for people to create media which may be in poor taste (e.g Rubbish music).

All in all, I do feel that media convergence is indeed a vital part of the ever changing world and has a mostly positive impact on the media and how we as an audience interact with it.

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The Owners are Alreich

During Hitler’s reign following the fall of the Weimar Republic, he established media practices which supported and spread his ideology to the public to gain followers. This was propaganda. Film, music, newspapers and other mediums would be devoid of Jewish artists and sought to establish a feeling of hate towards Jewish people which all boiled up throughout his reign and inevitably lead to the sinister Final Solution made by Himmler. This use of propaganda created a highly negative perception of Jewish people. The images below illustrates how they were viewed to the public.

With the German public being exposed to these images, it is clear to see how such perception of Jewish people would be influenced by Hitler’s control of the media.

The control of the media today, despite not being as sinister as that of Hitler’s, does contain many factors of how the Nazis controlled the media. Such as that how ideologies are forced on the public through the media we interact with on an everyday basis.

 

The owners of the media today shove down our throats of celebrity gossip such as of Bruce Jenner, the Kardashians, Donald Trump and whatever would show up on Richard Reid’s segments on the today show. The owners of the media seem to be

Trending topics such as the war on terror is where the modern media share a similarity with the Nazi control of media wherein the media illustrate all Islamic people as terrorists who seek to kill all of the western culture. Whilst it is a two way street, there are a large population of Muslims who do not support the movement of the extremists and condemn their actions. These Muslims are the ones who are highly affected by the media’s representation of the Islamic culture and as a result, some of the general public who hold strong opinions against the religion as a result of the media’s representation of the culture as a whole, take actions such as rallying against Islam or even worse like attacks on innocent Muslims.

In retrospect to that, it is clear to see how media ownership and how they control it impacts the way we interact with the media. Whilst scrolling through Facebook in search of dank memes and funny videos, one would pass through articles, videos and posts which all express the ideology of the media owners.

Who exactly are the media owners? the answer to that is complicated, but it is clear that political and social influence play a huge part of what we see through the different mediums we interact with.

 

 

Media Texth

All forms of media texts can be seen and interpreted. An image can spark certain feelings upon someone when it is viewed. These meanings behind media texts can vary between each individual as an image may evoke feelings which stems from one’s childhood or experiences and the same image may not provide much meaning to another individual.

The most successful texts, most notably in magazines or advertisements are the ones which can evoke certain feelings to a target audience or even a wider range of audiences. This is where semiotics come in. Meaning in media texts has two components; signifiers which is the object or word within an image or text that evokes meaning and feelings, and the signified which is the meaning or feeling itself which is evoked to the viewer. Observe the image below.

To the general public, an image of Mike Tyson can evoke an opinion of him being a brutal, ruthless, rude, controversial and merciless individual who bites ears and sought’s to rip his opponents heart out and eat their children. The media’s representation of Mike Tyson throughout his career has always illustrated him as a tough fighter who is notorious for brutally knocking out his opponent and later on being a coke addict and convicted rapist. His history with the media have cemented this representation of him to an audience whenever an image or video of him is seen.

However the above image can capture contrasting feelings and opinions towards Mike. In the image he is gently grasping two birds in his hands and looking at them with care and happiness. The connotations of this image forces the viewer to consider the idea that the ruthless and brutal Iron Mike may be a sweet and kind individual hiding behind the facade and image that the media has lead the world to believe His facial expression displays his adoration and care for these birds, as if they were his children, showing his tender and gentle side. The environment he is in which is a park contrasts with the bright Vegas lights and casinos where Mike would be found partying further adds to the feeling that Mike has a side to him which prefers a relaxed and natural environment compared to the glamorous city life.

This image goes to show how media texts can connote ideas which add meaning to an image to the viewer

Media Audiences

An audience can react in different ways to what they are being exposed to. Observe the above clip. Throughout the video we see a range of different reactions from the audience ranging from laughter to confusion. It also shows the different ways people engage such as dancing or simply sitting back having a smoke. But most importantly, it shows why Chris Tucker is the king.

It is year 2016. The Iphone 7 is rumoured to be released late this year, Batman vs Superman and other superhero films are soon to premiere, Donald Trump somehow is winning the presidential race, Shannon Noll has made a resurgence in popularity and Chris Tucker or Jackie Chan are yet to confirm the production of a much needed Rush Hour 4.

It is clear that in this day of age, the media and it’s countless forms is a central part of our culture.

But with the media being an important and vital part of today’s society, like everything, it can provide many anxieties and problems which affect the social wellbeing of the modern world. Such include the internet being a platform for online bullying, television being a factor for why people aren’t getting enough exercise or going out more, people would rather message over Facebook than communicate in person, fast food advertisements which contribute to the growing percentage of obese people, video games influencing violent mindsets for the youth and exposing kids to mature content, the list goes on and on.

Throughout the past century, there have been many examples of the media and it’s influence having a deadly affect on society. These include the Columbine school shootings being linked to a scene from The Basketball Diaries, the murder of Gina Castillo being influenced by the murders in the film Scream and a Guns n Roses song which opens with the line “I used to love her, but I had to kill her” being downloaded by a man only hours before he killed his wife. These examples however are only a minority of the negative effects of media on the audience.  Links to the articles on these are below.

The media has the power to manipulate the audience in a range of ways. The anxieties in regards to the media audience and media forms are a result of it’s negative effects. To counteract this, the media can also recognise these anxieties and bring awareness through different ways such as through music, advertisements, movies etc. So in regards to that, what is the solution to all these anxieties? In my opinion, the media itself is the solution

 

 

Links
Columbine shootings and Basketball Diaries
http://www.crsdrespect.org/columbine.html

Gina Castillo murder-
http://articles.latimes.com/1998/jan/15/local/me-8556

Guns n Roses song used in court case
http://www.blabbermouth.net/news/guns-n-roses-song-played-in-murder-trial-as-prosecutors-try-to-prove-a-husband-killed-his-wife/