Monthly Archives: March 2013

Would you like diversity with your agenda?

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Sheeple BCM110

Today, just like yesterday and the day before we have access to every type of media, television, radio, newspaper, even blogs – to get our need for news. However with the ability to get news anytime from any source, 24/7, is the ‘news’ actually news? When there is a story to tell about an incident is that what makes it news? Does the amount of people involve or the emotion evoked in the story make it news?

We are in an age where anything can be classified as news, it is not that, nothing would be worthy of being news but the fact that since we are a society that likes to know about our society we need to be catered for. This ‘need to know’ causes media outlets to get any story they can and to create news out of it. We have changed the meaning of news, our society has changed, our interests have changed, our ability to use technology has changed; an era of convergence has changed what causes news to be news.

With umpteen amount of media outlets for news it is a good idea for media moguls to diverse their interest in order to continue the expansion of their empire and audience. This expansion causes some issues, the limited freedom of expression – economic, cultural, social and political condition on the stories presented, with a concentration of owners, the variety of interests provided is also concentrated. Those that are employed usually have an agenda that reflects those of the employer, this causes the degree of news to be sud-standard, explained by Elizabeth Hart in ‘Media Ownership‘ (reading for Week 4).

The resulting action of contradicting the agenda the employer represents ends up with the simple result of “your effort is no longer needed”, which is the basic result of CBS ex-worker Dan Rather who reported news about then President George W. Bush avoiding going to Vietnam about his national guard duties. Which caused confusion about the evidence supporting the claim made by Dan Rather and the potential cover up by CBS to claim that there was no evidence.

The ‘sacking’ of Dan Rather caused news outlets around America to both question Dan Rather’s political outlook but also his integrity as a news presenter. He appeared on the American ABC’s The View, which gave Dan Rather the opportunity to voice his reasoning and understanding of what happened, and also his opinion on what the news has become. Dan Rather commented that his political stance was as an Independent, while his previous employer, CBS, is seen as having a Liberal bias.

The power to control the media allowed for such an event to happen, one could not just get away with freedom of speech on a news show which has a political agenda, regardless of experience in the field.

media_control BCM112

When asking “does it matter who controls the media”, the answer is yes, it does matter. Where there is a need for news you are more likely to watch news that is aimed for the individual that has the same outlook as the company producing the news. The company knows who watches there programming and co-ordinates there scheduling and showing to emphasize their possible agenda. When does it become too much? When the diversity of what is on different media outlets is all the same, there is a need for diversity and a need for regulation. If I turn on the television and then the radio and they both produce the same conceived biased idea, I think it would be time to change who controls our media.

Open Permission, Closed Access

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Over the past couple of weeks I have come to realise a couple of things about myself and technology:

1. I am a capable user of the internet yet have not yet experienced anything that is outside what I have created – I have organised the internet and the way I use it around my ideals; pretty much what I am interested in.

2. When an old analogue technology becomes obsolete it doesn’t bother me, I know it will come back combined in another platform where it will feel exactly the same – except way better! {Convergence}

3. My choices of technology seem to border more on open access content rather than close access. Realising the technology I have around me – Android phone and a P.C

ideology BCM112

I was introduced to Company Ideologies (Apple and Android) and how they differ for a user but also for the company. Starting with Apple and IPhone creator Steve Jobs, I am given the perspective that to maintain control over what a user can do is necessary to ensure a balance of power for the company and also balance the ignorance of the user. In the case of an IPhone, it is a sterile tool, as Steve Jobs said

“We define everything that is on the phone. . . . You don’t want your phone to be like a PC. The last thing you want is to have loaded three apps on your phone and then you go to make a call and it doesn’t work anymore.”

To give people the freedom of technology with the ability to change the original intentions is something that should not be allowed. People are aware of the basics of the technology they hold, why then would the user change that and potentially destroy/damage its use.

I find myself understanding and agreeing with Steve Jobs and his ideology, I am conflicted with the issue of ignorant users not knowing what they are doing with todays technology… and it is quite scary. To undermine the specific use of technology, such as the IPhone, seems absurd, why change something that is meant to be “perfect”.

In contrast, is Android, an open access software where multiple companies come together to change and compete for the sale of a product, and still maintain a dominance over the smartphone market (shown below). Just understanding the process of Android feels empowering, the amount of people that input into a product is only restricted by imagination.

smartphone market share BCM112

“Let’s Play! Ctrl C, Ctrl V”

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Copyright was brought to my attention and the ways in which Industries attempt to control what can and cannot be done with content that is not your own. Certain aspects stood out to me, the idea that Industries need control in order to maintain a balance of power and to protect their assets, and also this idea that to copyright something is to restrict the creativity and/or progress in technological advancement. The Industries can’t just bully people, the content is theirs to control? This isn’t always the case, is it?

Copyright BCM112

Without the permission to use other peoples content and to also not credit where that content came from – that is a bad thing, yes? There have been countless examples of people taking credit (mistakenly) for what is not theirs. This especially happens in music – here are some cases.

Videogames have a different perspective when it comes to copyright infringement. There is a common concept on YouTube called “Let’s Play“, where people play a game (PS3, Xbox360, Wii U, PC), record what they play, add some commentary and upload it to YouTube. What about copyright though? Surely isn’t making money from creating content in a video game copyright infringement?

Game creators such as those at Minecraft understand that people want to play the game and show other people what they do and how they do things in games. So this idea of “Let’s Play”, allows the creators to get a broader audience to experience the game they created and legitimately shows people having fun while playing it. So the creators get some pretty free promotion and get to watch their community grow.

The use of Minecraft with YouTube and ads can be found here in the terms.

I have come across some Myths about copyright, by Brad Templeton which deal with a range of situations from Legal in court, to just being a crime, to just thinking it is free advertising.

Copyright copied pastied bcm112

(Ctrl C is copy, Ctrl V is paste, shortcuts for Windows)

I kissed a World Leader and I liked it

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A beer ad I remember!

I find it memorable mainly because I did not actually get what the ad was for, until the beer came into shot. With DJ Benny Benassi’s track, Satisfaction playing, it caught my attention and become imbedded into my memory. I saw it as something unusual, the representation of taste (the tongue) being used to suggest that there will always be a craving, the need for satisfaction, but also possible the idea of drinking at a party and that scenario being up social drinking. It was very unexpected from previous promotional beer ads where it would be just stereotypical beer drinking doing anything for a beer even juxtaposing that stereotype.

The following images I find are also memorable:

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U.S President Barack Obama kissing Chinese President Hu Jintao

Controversial kiss BCm110Pope Benedict kissing Ahmed al-Tayeb

Without the captions or knowledge of who the men are and what they represent, you would only get the title “UnHate” and the obvious part of men kissing, closed eyes, puckered lips, the wrapped around arm/hand (around the pope), bringing up the idea of homosexual pride and diversity, possibly? The white writing in the green box reads “United Colors of Benetton”, Benetton being a clothing brand.

These images have caused controversy around both political and religious communities as it is seen to both undermine and obscure what Obama, the Pope, Hu and Ahmed represent, yet at the same time the images bring both political and religious situations, homosexuality (gay marriage), diversity (racism), political constraints, religious freedom. This is what Benetton represents, as they are a firm advocate for religious, political and environmental ideals, supporting diversity, so this isn’t as shocking to come from such a brand.

An interesting video about Semiotics:

Convergence with YouTube

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Technology today has morphed into a convenient tool that we can use for multiple tasks at any given time, but the technology has to be able to have multiple capabilities.

It is brought to our attention that we have approached a time of convergence – defined by Henry Jenkins as, “the flow of content across multiple media platforms, cooperation between media industries and the migratory behaviour of media audiences”.

Convergence has brought along with it a triangle of creation – Technologies, Audiences and Industries. The constant change in Technology has allowed the Audience, consumers to become a ‘prosumer’, where an individual produces and consumes technology, which effects Industries by them not being able to maintain/control what is being produced/distributed.

This time has approached unknowingly to many but it isn’t something to be discouraged by, people are most likely using it each day. When looking at media platforms today such as YouTube – an internationally recognized video based platform which allows anyone to become a user and post content that they have created, which allows anyone else in the world to watch. The user gets to create a channel where they get to customize what it looks like and what they want to watch. This includes Subscribing to other people’s channels which create content that you would like to watch, and also create playlists of other videos that the user is interested in. Due to the global connection YouTube has presented it is in constant change with viewers and content creators. YouTube created a partnership with consistent/popular creator content so the user can continue with their creation but also get paid and develop new content and methods for their videos. This showed that the change in technology and the audience caused the industries to find a way to maintain viewers of the website but also to keep content creators on the site also, this was introduced in 2005.

Getting ready for #bcm110 and #bcm112

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Welcome to Talkin’ about Technology!

My name is James and I am a University student. I am studying a Bachelor of Communication and Media Studies, majoring in Digital Media and Communication – hopefully!

I am easy going and like to get things done. I enjoy sleeping, eating and relaxing – some might say I am lazy. I prefer easy going.

This blog will be a University project that will help me create an “Online Portfolio”. At this moment in time I will be posting about YouTube – creators, channels, editors, pretty much anything that I find fascinating or that makes me laugh. This will revolve around BCM112 class.

I will also be using this blog to post my understanding on concepts and situations from my BCM110 class, which revolves around Communication and Media Studies.

If I get the chance, which I should considering how much time I spend on the computer, I will also be posting some reviews of things, or observations of stuff – it is pretty broad so… be on the look out.

As for future plans this website will see me through my University life. I also plan to do a student exchange some time in the future – here’s hoping.

I will be using tags to categories my posts so if just looking for a specific thing check to the right and click on a tag!

Feel free to follow me on Twitter and come again!