Ship Bias Media Outta’ Here (Week 11)

 Cultural diversity has always characterised Australia, but growing potential for mobility and conclusion has lead to new forms of inclusion and exclusion in transnational communities and multicultural societies (Georgiou, 2003, pg.5). What we assume or what we believe to portray as a particular person, character or society is largely shaped by politics through an array of media channels.

 As Foot (1976, in Sukhmani, 2014) elaborates, race hate and race violence does not rise and fall according to the numbers of immigrants coming to Britain. It rises and falls to the extent to which people’s prejudices are inflamed and made respectable by politicians and newspapers. What I have been exposed to growing up, just like many of you, is a negative portrayal and stereotype of asylum seekers through traditional news forms.

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 Use of words such as ‘terrorists’, ‘sponging’, and ‘diseased’ create an awful and misleading framed identity that has marginalised the ‘boat people’ society. This representation offers nothing but a negative image and prejudice, in which Australia are lead to believe that the refugees have nothing to offer the country. Migrants must then struggle to find acceptance and positive recognition in such a heavily media saturated society, carrying a label that only offers one side of the story.

 This marginalization and stereotyping of racialised communities is also known as ‘diasporic media’, in which it has the potential to enhance the confidence of minority ethnic individuals and communities (Cottle, 2000 in Sukhmani, 2014).

It saddens me to believe that individuals must flee their country due to civil war or persecution of minority ethnic or religious groups, and then struggle to find reception in a country that is supposedly ‘culturally diverse’. Luckily immigrants and refugees are finding the strength and power to speak up!

As Salazar (2012) argues, that community media is better positioned to recognise changing attitudes towards migrants and refugees, and that young media practitioners have become active citizens in the exercise of their civil and communication rights. Through the use of modern media channels, such as social media, individuals own the process of content creation and communication, thus redefining the content and expressing their own opinions.

Asylum Seeker Recourse Center’ Twitter Account

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 We must acknowledge that we have a moral obligation to dig deeper into the truth of issues, not just rely on what is presented in the frames of media and government. If you don’t agree, speak up!

Reference List:

Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, Tweets and Replies, JPEG, accessed 21/05/2014, https://twitter.com/ASRC1

Georgiou, M 2003, ‘Mapping Diasporic Media Across the EU’, Key Deliverable: The European Media and Texhnology in Everyday Life Network, 2000-2003, accessed 21/05/2014, http://www.lse.ac.uk/media@lse/research/EMTEL/reports/georgiou_2003_emtel.pdf

Mehdi, N 2014, Asylum Seekers and Media Representation, accessed 21/05/2014, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7BaPeY5ws9o

Merret, T 2013, Ali’s Story-Asylum Seekers-A Better Way, accessed 21/05/2014, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mtWwS1jv3qw

PaperBoy, Front Page-Ship them out of here, JPEG, accessed 21/05/2014, http://www.thepaperboy.com/australia/2013/07/19/front-pages-headlines.cfm

Salazar, Juan Francisco 2012, ‘Digital stories and emerging citizens’ media practices by migrant youth in Western Sydney’. 3C Media, Journal of Community, Issue. 7, pp. 1-21

Sukhmani, K 2014, Diasporic Media, lecture, BCM310 Emerging Issues in Media and Communications, University of Wollongong, delivered 19 May

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Globalisation, also known as USA (Week 10)

Globalisation is one of the most, if not upmost topics discussed and debated across all nations and across all generations. Perhaps, one of the most insightful processes as how society and culture has generated over time. Sukhmani (2014) defines globalisation as the ‘ways that one particular economic system – ‘the free market’ or global capitalism – now permeates most of the globe’. Which in turn increases worldwide exchanges of national and cultural recourses.

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 Why are India and China taking over TV? Apart from the massive size of their populations, India and China are important as two of the world’s greatest diaspora’s, so each has substantial although dispersed overseas markets to cultivate in pursuit of its own globalisation (Harrison & Sinclair, 2004). You could say that India and China are also known as media capitalists, in which they are sites for mediation, locations where complex forces and flows interact (Curtin, 2003). But what makes these countries such strong and powerful media capitals in today’s society?

Harrison & Sinclair (2004) agree that their massive population deserves attention in which their advanced technology and economic set-up depend on a vast array of culturally diverse influences that attract a wide range of audiences. However, we must note that globalisation relies on the exchange of goods and services, in which Hong Kong is very Chinese and remarkably Western, and yet it’s not really either (Curtin, 2003, pg.267).

Asian ‘Human Tetris’ Game Show

American ‘Human Tetris’ Game Show

This is a specific example of the imbalance in globalisation, I often struggle to define. It is almost impossible to believe that each country is exchanging and absorbing other cultures from roughly the same percentage. Rather it seems, that America takes world views, products, ideas, and other aspects of culture, turns them into their own and spreads them across the globe as “American”. Therefore, the world being more Americanised than Globalised.

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 What do you think about when you hear the word America? American flags, apple pie, baseballs, hot dogs, the statue of liberty or Justin Beiber. WRONG! Although you might think these people, products and traditions are American, they have in fact originated from other cultures. This raises the question on whether the huge amount of money and popularity that America holds, may be the reason that these people, products and traditions become household names in Indian and Chinese TV, making it increasingly successful.

 I view America as holding a certain extent of cultural imperialism, also known as ‘transnational corporate cultural domination’ (Schiller, in Sukhmani, 2014). As you can see there is an inadequate percentage of international flows, networks and media products in the contemporary world, particularly between Asia and America.The American television industry has for decades been the trendsetter  in the development of the medium world-world (Curtin, 2009, pg.9)

 It’s up to you to look more deeply at where your media is truly coming from, then you may be able to answer whether our society is more influenced by globalisation or Americanisation?

 

Reference List:

Curtin, Michael, “Comparing Media Capitals: Hong Kong and Mumai”, Global Media and Communication, Sage Publications, 2010. 262-270

Curtin, Michael. “Matrix Media.” Television Studies After TV: Understanding Television in the Post-Broadcast Era. Eds Graeme Turner and Jinna Tay. London: Routledge, 2009. 9–19.

GreatestTVshows 2009, Hole In The Wall US Season 1Episode 1 Part 1, accessed 12/05/2014 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cnFBM58UOYM

Harrison, M & J Sinclair 2004, ‘Globalisation, Nation, and Television in Asia’, Television New Media, vol. 5, no.41, pp. 41-54

Sukhmani, K 2014, Globalisation and the Media, lecture, BCM310 Emerging Issues in Media and Communications, University of Wollongong, delivered 12 May

The tube gangster 2009, Chinese Tetris, accessed 12/05/2014, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qdvIdEaw7Lg

It doesn’t matter if you’re black or white? (Week 9)

“Race itself has become a digital medium, a distinctive set of informatic codes, networked mediated narratives, maps, images, visualizations that index identity. It has become apparent that online race is complex and mutable” (Sanjay, 2014).

Race and ethnicity is inescapable, what we are and who we are has been culturally formed through history. Traditional norms and stereotypes have allowed us to create characters, narratives and representations of oppressed groups in society, allowing us to label these groups with negative connotations, which most of the time are broad and falsified. The first thing that comes to mind when thinking of racial discrimination in the media, is the 9/11 attacks and the opportune moment for further stereotyping of Arab and Muslim individuals, in which hate crimes multiplied in America by 1600% between 2001 and 2002 (Asultanty, 2013).

November 2011 Time Magazine “The Woman of Islam”

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The above newspaper cover is an example of American media attempting to change oppression through the use of simplified complex representations, “balancing a negative representation with a positive one” (Asultanty, 2013). However, the image appears in a narrative that subtly justifies discrimination against Arabs and Muslims, such as terrorists, villains and untrustworthy types by labelling them as ‘secretive’ and having ‘something to hide’, justified by the title ‘Lifting The Veil’. This identifying that America will never be able to let go of their hatred towards the Muslim society, based upon the few people that ruined their relationship and caused so much pain.

Debates about how to define the community being represented became a prevalent issue in the 2009 Hey Hey it’s Saturday skit. The performance made me question the worthiness of African-American past to white-Australia past, in which both races had been made fun of. This notion of racial discrimination I identified as based on one’s previous experiences and knowledge, in which African-Americans had dealt with significant hardship based on their race and ethnicity in previous times. However, it must not go unnoticed that racism in the media can also effect people from all different cultures and one must not be given significant attention over the other. For example, the white people received more backlash painting their faces black, than the black male did representing a white individual.

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In our tutorial we looked at the Nazi costume worn by Prince Harry, as represented in the media.We concluded that individuals make racist comments everyday, however people of power are significantly represented in the media for their interpretations of racism, and this has a negative effect on the global audience. But why did he receive so much racial backlash? Unfortunately, Prince Harry represented the idea of insignificance towards World War II and the death of many Jews, rather creating a humorous recount on a horrible period of life for many social communities. Although creating negative imagery, it must be noted that this may only be a way of “imaging fuller ways of characters and stories”, depending on the individual and their prior knowledge and experiences (Sukhmani, 2014), in which Prince Harry thought he was doing no harm.

References:

Asultanty, E 2013, ‘Arabs and Muslims in the Media after 9/11: Representational Strategies for a Postrace Era’, Project Muse, vol.65, no.1, pp.161-169

BBC News, JPEG, Harry says sorry for Nazi Costume, accessed 05/05/2014, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/4170083.stm

Clarke, M 2009, ‘White Australia has a blackface history’, Overland Literary Journal, pp.1-4, 8 October

Jen 2009, Hey Hey it’s Saturday: Jackson Jive, accessed 05/05/2014, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0qi5sJRywY

Sanjay, S 2014, ‘Black Twitter? Racial hash tags, networks and contagion’, New Formations, vol.1, no.78, pg.1, accessed 05/05/2014, http://www.darkmatter101.org/wiki/_media/digital-race/sharma_black_twitter_final.pdf

Ted 2013, Untapped Stereotypes: Evelyn Asultanty, accessed 05/05/2014, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4J1Gaz3ByU

Time Magazine, JPEG, Women of Afghanistan, accessed 05/05/2013, http://content.time.com/time/covers/0,16641,20011203,00.html