Wednesday, July 2, 2008

SUMMER PROJECT POST: Media Analysis and Source Credibility

This is my third summer project post for our class, and I have been thinking about propaganda, advertising, and the effects of popular culture on kids and schools. I am working on a professional presentation that has to do with teaching critical thinking, and I am using pop culture as my starting point.

Anyway, I came across the website for The Culture and Media Institute. The site has some really interesting articles that deal with the impact of language. This one*** details the way popular music lyrics affect teen behavior (***before you read: PROFANITY alert in this article). The website’s also got a sidebar column that tracks news articles evidencing our culture’s decline, (a Biblical one, evidently, as the sidebar’s entitled “Slouching Toward Gomorrah”). One of the recent articles discusses thievery of manhole covers, while another reports on a British student who was given credit for a profane answer on a test.

The Culture and Media Institute is a product of The Media Research Center, an openly conservative organization, and “the mission of the Culture and Media Institute is to preserve and help restore America’s culture, character, traditional values, and morals against the assault of the liberal media elite, and to promote fair portrayal of social conservatives and religious believers in the media. CMI, the cultural division of the Media Research Center, is dedicated to correcting misconceptions in the media about social conservatism and religious faith.”

So… After looking over the site, some articles, and other contents, think about this:

What did you discover that you find interesting, significant, revealing, or strange?

What does the information or ideas contained here tell you about bias? About information?

According to the website and its contents, what issues are most important in America today?

What changes should be made in America today? What is “truth”? How do you know?

And… Is this a credible source? Does it meet the standards of accuracy, objectivity, currency, and coverage that determine credibility?


Alissa DuVall said...

I found the article on “Medical Marvels Extend to the Unborn” very touching. This surgery shows that unborn babies are real, tiny, helpless people and should be treated as such. I was also very stuck by the issues regarding the Fairness Doctrine. It is scary how close we are coming to infringing on the right of freedom of speech. This doctrine would give the federal government even more power to manipulate and make us see things the way they want us too; and giving a government too much power can make it become dangerous.

It was also very interesting to me that the ladies on The View skirted the controversial issues when talking to Katy Perry. I do not believe that the music we listen to controls us or defines us, but it can have an impact on how we think. We are impacted simply because the information is put into our head.

Most information we receive is biased in some way. We must take in the information we receive and separate the facts from the opinions. The media covers only the things that they want to draw our attention to, this is bias. Also, any piece of information can be twisted to be seen as something that it is not. Any source that we go to is probably biased in some way. Therefore, we must learn to discern what is truth.

Anonymous said...

I found this website as a good source for finding the underlying issues and defining them more detailed. I read the whole article on the music lyrics and the vulgarity of the language used. It was astonishing what the artists were really saying and what it meant. I have previously listened to all of the songs mentioned and I liked the songs but never truly knew what the songs were actually saying. I do think that artists get a little carried away with the sexuality content of the songs, but I don't think it really corrupts teenagers because most of them don't know what they are saying most of the time anyways. They only listen to them because they are the "hit" songs. Also the females sang mostly against the males and vice versa. That seems to be reoccuring a lot.
The articles on the site right now seem to be mainly focusing on the presidential and VP elections and primaries. It's funny because it seems like most of the articles are about Sarah Palin, showing much bias. I think that websites like this one should be more equally sided and not only show the stuff on Palin but also on Biden as well.
I think this source is mostly credible other than the big lean against Palin. It has accurate info, currency on the dates, an objective, and credibility.