I really enjoyed the group presentation on Title IX . I was really intrigued by the sports statistics. Although Title IX has opened doors for women's sports, it still lacks significantly in represetation in media. The lacking is more so evident when compared to coverage of men's sports, because if you compare coverage to prior to Title IX, there would be a drastic positive shift. I thought the statistics about the percentage of fans that are women was a pivotal number. With those numbers, it is pretty evident in my mind that women are not aware of the voice that they have in
In 1999, the teen industry was responsible for billions of dollars in spending, and that doesn't even include the billions of dollars that they get their parents to spend on them. It was interesting how MTV was deemed as a continuous channel of advertisements to appeal to teens. From the commercials for products, to the music videos that are also an elusive way of advertising music. It's funny how a marketing agency that targets teens charges thousands upon thousands of dollars to be privy to their pictures. Their motive is to show what's cool before it becomes mainstream. Why? Because as soon as it becomes mainstream, it's not cool. It's a crazy scenario. The marketing that makes something cool is the same thing that kills it. In a target group with 5 teens, each boy was paid $150 to participate in a focus group to help determine the next trigger for a multi million dollar marketing campaign. Yep, that's not a typo...a whopping $150. All of that money just to contribute to the million dollar campaign they probably helped discover.
Today in class we looked at some of the big players in the media industry. It was very interesting to notice how the big names (AOL, Viacom, Disney, etc...) control so much more than just media airwaves and television stations. Their ownership extends into products, amusement parks, sports teams, and restaurants just to name a very few. The concept that intrigues me is the correlation between advertisements money and the big wigs that pump out the ads. Is there really much room to complain about the false light of advertising when the corporations are the ones that are putting out the images. I wonder because it seems more evident to me than ever that they are protecting their own interests. It was never really a doubt to me before that public interest took a back seat to financial interests, but after learning how many conglomerates were involved in one corporation, it is now more obvious how one ingredient affects the recipe of so many more dishes.
This week was really interesting delving into ads and how they inconspicuously desensitize us about gender issues. It was interesting to study ads and how they create this facade about what is normal and abnormal. When they are broken down, it's not always obvious what they're selling, especially when at times you notice that the picture has very little relevance to reality.
On the flip side, I've started to ask different questions. Instead of wondering what's being sold, I'm starting to wonder what I'm buying. Am I buying the ad or the product. I don't know if that makes sense, but in my mind, if I buy the ad, I'm buying the gimmick or the false promise that it carries. If I am buying the product, then I'm hoping it will fulfill it's necessity in purpose.
For example, if I buy a Coke, is it because "I want the world to sing in perfect harmony" or is it because I'm just thirsty. I know it's a pretty far stretch, but how many times do we buy a product for what we hope it will do with the opposite sex or for our self esteem. When in essence, Axe body wash is no more than just that. It's just body wash. Wouldn't Suave or Old Spice or even Dove get you just as clean? But, according to the ad they don't come with the possibility of getting the girl. Ladies correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the frequent use of any soap would help...right?
So again I ask did you buy the ad or the product? If you bought the ad, did it work?
I had a conversation with a friend that reminded me of how stereotypes just enter common conversation sometimes without us even noticing. We went to an NBA basketball game and he was looking around and he said "Black people always have the best seats in the house...court side!" I laughed when he said that, because on the floor, all 10 players were black. On the bench, there were a total of 6 white players combined on both teams. It's statistics like these that allow 2 stereotypes...all black people excel in basketball, and white men can't jump. Because of the extreme stereotype of blacks and basketball, it leads to the phenomenon of when a white person excels in basketball, he receives street credibility, leaning more toward a black identification. There are great athletes in all races, but it's just interesting how we react when those stereotypes are broken. For example how we are sometimes surprised when a black man can't play basketball, or we're amazed when a white man can. One things for sure I can't, and it has nothing to do with my race!!
This week in class, there's been quite a bit of discussion concerning roles that the media creates based on sex. The video that we watched this week concerning male imagery in the media was very eye opening. It was very interesting how much media played a role in creating the ideal image for males. As an avid sports fan, I found it interesting how they mentioned that being disrespectful or acting macho toward your opponent was categorized as poor sportsmanship. Although I agree that sportsmanship should govern behavior in all facets of a game, I don't know if I agree with overall politeness being in the forefront. I don't consider intensity a negative aspect of sports. Every person that takes on an opponent trains tirelessly to be better than his competition. I believe there should be a distinct difference between game time and normal time. Off the field, I appreciate the likes of a Mark McGwire that has the ability to show emotion, but I can guarantee that if Mr. McGwire was on first base and a runner was heading straight for him, he wouldn't graciously excuse himself and allow the opponent to run through. The mentality to focus on the win comes at high costs, but character, in my opinion shouldn't be questioned when a player points at another player or does something that proves that at that moment he was the better man. Don't go crazy replying that I'm a poor sport and that I lack sportsmanship. I don't like taunting or anything of the sort, but I love the emotion in a game. I love the oppurtunity to beat someone that has beaten me. I hate to lose, therefore when I play, I try my damndest not too. (At anyones expense.) And for the record, female athletes are way more intense!!!
This past Tuesday, we officially welcomed a new era in our countries history. There was definitely a buzz everywhere. For my daughters elementary school, they had "Red, White, and Blue Day" to commemorate the election.
The kids were taught the importance of the day. Although it is exciting to be a part of history, especially in civil rights, there is still something to be appreciated when we keep things simple. Do we think maybe the media generates issues that we put into our minds? My daughter learned that Barrack Obama was our new President, not whether or not he was black or white. As exciting as the days events were, I couldn't quite get a feel for the media portrayal.
Somethings stood out to me that made me question media portrayal. When we watch all the pomp and circumstance, there was a lot of celebrities that performed for the President. Many of the acts were Rap and R&B artists. I wondered if the media used that genre because of the new President's preference, or to appeal to the obvious African-American audience.
I can't remember, so maybe I'm looking for input, but was there this much hype in previous inaugurations? Race aside, were previous inaugurations given the same exciting reporting that helped build the celebrations this year? What were we truly celebrating? The inauguration of a black man? or The inauguration of our new President? If both, which one was more important to you?