Reflection – Shannon Outcalt

Taking Media 180 has been invaluable in helping me to assess the messages that are thrown at me every day in advertising and popular culture. Examining how we relate to consumer culture (and the excess it produces) has been incredibly eye-opening – I doubt I would’ve given my shopping addiction any serious thought had I not taken this class. I also learned that advertising and media isn’t all bad. Throughout history, many major positive changes have taken place thanks to political activists who have used both print and digital media to their advantage. Informing and influencing public opinion is a great power to have, but it comes with a lot of responsibility. Thanks to this course, I’ll be able to use my position as a consumer and producer of media in a responsible, positive way.

Class Reflection-Blog Post 7

This class provided a lot more for me than I thought it was going to at the start. I learned of the incredible influence media has on it’s consumers from the beginning of mass media itself. These influences sometimes good, sometimes bad are regardless not thoughts of our own. Though I will continue to be a consumer, as I must in our consumer based society, I will be a smarter consumer and know what it is that I want and what it is that media wants me to want. With our campaigns I learned better skills working within a group context as well as the fact that one small group can promote change so long as they follow through with their goals. This knowledge I will carry over into the workplace, school, anywhere that I wish to have an effect I know I can do so. This class is much more than a media class, it is a life class. Seeing as media consumes our entire lives this class will assist in the nearly every aspect.

Reflection- Christopher Lentine

I really enjoyed the lectures on advertising and how the media persuades us into wanting products using different strategies. This affected me outside of the class because I started to look at ads on tv, in magazines and on the subway and analyze why I wanted the product or why other people would want it. I found it very interested to understand how the public can be manipulated this way and that was mainly what the class meant to me. I enjoyed learning about the effects of pictures and film and how they can send messages as opposed to the written word. I also enjoyed going into history for examples as they were very clear to understand and also relatable to today. This showed me how significant these ideas were and made me realize that the media has been using the same techniques for years even though I never noticed. Thanks to this class I now have noticed and am interested to see how media evolves in the future.

Reflection Olivia Unger

when I first began this class I thought, wow alright this is gonna help me understand aspects of the way we use media. I thought we would’ve been using way more media outlets like our final project. But my way of thinking was not what was in store. We learned the history of various media outlets as well as why they are used. The most influential of these was professor Ewen book, all consuming images. It was an eye opener to realize we are socially constructed to do many of the things we deem as normal. To put ourselves in the media and to show everything to everyone and to follow the norm is something that we are taught from when we are young but we never realized it. We thought it was something natural. Now through professor Ewens class I am able to see various aspects of how we use media and how we are socially constructed to follow the norms.

Reflection – Mary Louise Mora

Taking this introductory course for media studies, I learned a lot about the malleability of the general public—the degree of how easy it is to change, repress, and ignore history as well as how to use this to persuade the general population. Through advertising, imagery, and propaganda catering to groups of people, mass manipulation is made possible. This process can be meticulous or accidental, as people are seemingly bound to believe anything if given the right push, inclination or association.

This realization has made me more conscious of advertising directed towards me. It has also made me more conscious of where my information was coming from. (How reliable are my sources?) I’m definitely more thoughtful about the information I am given and consider its motives and origins, before I make my opinion or consider it truth. Overall, I’d say this course has made me a more conscious and aware person, I am better able to confront arguments more logically and see situations from grander perspectives. Because I’ve learned so much about how people are motivated and how they are propelled to think, I believe I am ready to create the change I want to see within the world.

Mary Louise Mora

Section 07

 

As the semester comes to a conclusion , I felt that this class was about how media has been used in society to spread messages along with filter them to the general public. I thought this highly applicable to my everyday life. We saw how written word has provided a liberating outlet for both individuals and  groups in past history with the development of media such as the newspapers and television . In addition , the highlighting of the rise of a visual vernacular of images that imitate the ways that ordinary people see was a super interesting assignment as I found it really cool to tell two different stories with the same set of pictures. It was an eye-opening experience as it allowed me to see that the media can truly shape anything how they want it to be. Furthermore,  another s lecture that  struck a chord with me was the about the invention of the Camera. I felt this was important as its advancement at the time allowed for realistic depiction of real-life scenarios unlike ever before. Social structures and interactions could now be documented for the rest of the world to observe and digest. Similarly , we have seen this with social media in today’s landscape on applications such as snap chat , twitter , Facebook and Instagram . I definitely will take a lot of lessons learned from this class and apply them to my future encounters and analysis . This class offered me a new perspective on media that I had not held prior and I am very grateful for this.

 

 

Reflections at the End of the Line – Gus Rosario

 

This is not the first class that I have taken where a professor tried to change the class’ way of thinking. A class which attempted to transcend above the knowledge found in textbooks to make sure that we all can “truly see.” You know the ones, those hokey classes where the professor tells everyone that they can make a difference in the world, like something out of Dead Poets Society or something. But, it is the first time where I believed the message. Prof. Ewen’s ending speech and the ovation he received are a testament to that. The course could have gone the traditional art and we could have spent the semester regurgitating information from a textbook, instead we shown the importance of media and how it helped shape our society. We learned how the church used literacy to control the masses, how advertising was used to get people to buy, and how we are still being manipulated by the corporations around us every day. Edward Bernay’s and his manipulation of the masses through advertising was horrifying to me. It made me realize how unethical it all seemed to try to control people in an attempt to get them to buy things. Bernays is partly responsible for this society we live in where everyone is always encouraged to buy the newest phones and the sleekest of fashions. Ewen’s final words, I imagine, will follow me, a challenge to encourage me to help make this a better world, not just for me but for all of its inhabitants.

Reflection~ Simona Borkina

At the start of the semester, I assumed that the course would be heavily based on advertising tactics, consumer culture, and how various forms of media are used to get their point across to the public. I was pleasantly surprised when we watched “Style Wars” on the second day of class. It wasn’t until a few days later that I realized why the film was relevant to an introductory to media class. When in middle school, I read the book Fahrenheit 451 so when I saw that book written on the syllabus, I was confused as to how it was applicable to a media class. Now that the course has ended, I understand the reason why Professor Ewen assigned certain readings and films for us to further explore.

I am now able to look at commercials, advertisements, television, and other forms of media in a new and different light. Everything in the world of media and public relations is done for a reason, there are no mistakes as we learned throughout this semester. We as consumers may be unaware about the extent to which we are being shaped by companies into thinking a certain way or buying a product, however, now that we took this class we are one step ahead of the game and can understand the reasoning behind the construction of ideas that are being exposed to us.

Reflection- Tony T.

When I first began taking this class, I assumed it would be about learning the basics of how the media works with modern examples. There was way more in store.  I really enjoyed many of the pieces we were assigned to read from many years ago including Professor Ewen’s very own book from the 80s. It also says something that many of the pieces written all of those years ago dealing with media are relevant to the way the media works today. Taking this course really opened my eyes to how the media works behind the scenes and how us as the public can basically being brainwashed into certain beliefs and ideals. But thinking more deeply, the media is controlled by other people so it brings up the idea of people brainwashing other people. Although “certain people” behind a specific media might influence or brainwash the public, there comes a point where those “certain people” become apart of the public and have the potential to be sucked in or brainwashed by another media source other than the one they control. This only demonstrates how the manipulation by the media actually comes full circle. With this course in my mental storage, I will be more selective with the media I interact with questioning its true intent from now on.

Paige McAllister

Overall, I really enjoyed the course. It was very interesting to study media this way and I would have never thought we should study essays like Benjamin Franklin’s Continuation of the Account of My Life or watch a film like Style Wars. These two are vastly different but both contributed to the course in ways I can understand now. I thought this course would focus on basic advertising strategies and its effects, social media, television, celebrity culture, etc so I was pleasantly surprised. I did not ever imagine studying the Catholic church and its art and would have never connected that with perceptions and advertising and the individual. I now respect advertising a lot more and realize all that goes into it — the psychology, the branding, the symbols, the colors, etc. Every detail is choreographed and meant to get you to think a certain way or buy a product. Professor Ewen’s lectures were always interesting and incorporated so much more than media studies.