Complete 2 Mass Communications Discussions

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Before you tackle this exercise, please make sure you have read the materials at all of the links in this discussion question. Then, please respond to one of the following questions:

1. K-Pop, also known as Korean Pop Music, is a very appealing and stylized vision of young people – both girls and boys. Take a look at these two videos and see what you can find spot about:

  • Gender roles in Korea among young people – open and expressive or reserved?
  • Clothing and hair styles – would you see those clothes in New York City?
  • Dancing and music style – highly Korean or completely Western, or someplace in between?
  • Materialistic or spiritual?

Then tell us, how do you think access to western cultural influences through the Internet, YouTube and social media is helping or hurting other populations?

2. Another way to look at how western culture is influencing other populations through the Internet, YouTube and social media might be to consider these stories about the price some people paid for getting swept up in Pharrell’s worldwide “Happy” video:

‘Happy in Tehran’ Dancers Are Given Suspended Sentences

Iran: Happy video dancers sentenced to 91 lashes and jail

3. Alternatively, do you think the mass media, particularly the U.S. mass media, are influencing the development and extinction of cultures? Consider, for example, this video:

3. Or, tell us: What can/should people do to protect their culture from outside cultural messages that threaten them?



Please watch this video of the theorist talking about the media as storytellers, specifically in relation to his conclusions about the effects of media violence on movie and TV viewers and videogamers, which he called the Mean World Syndrome:

Gerbner called what he saw as the resulting desensitization of violence, the Mean World Syndrome, which had the additional human toll of making people more fearful in general:

Before you proceed, please make sure you have read the materials at all of the links in this discussion prompt. Then, select and respond to one of the following activities.

Activity #1:

Please select and respond to one of the following questions:

  • Do children know the difference between the “real” violence on the news and the violence in television’s “entertainment” shows? What does our research say?
  • What are some of the social effects of violence in the media? Has research proven a conclusive link between violence in the media and violence in society?
  • Why do adults like media violence? Why do children like media violence? Compare the reasons; what does mass communication theory say are the reasons we like media violence?

Activity #2:

Instead of violence, think about what other stories you believe the media tell us. This may be easier to do if you grew up in another culture or if you have lived in another country, so that you can look at U.S. culture “from the outside in.” It may be harder to do if you are immersed in the culture, simply because the stories we watch and hear reinforce for us the way life should be.

Describe one or more themes or messages that you think are embedded in our media stories and incorporate your thinking into your answer to one of the following questions:

  • Can you think of a way that they may be useful to corporate media producers (the way exporting violence can be useful to producers)?
  • Do you think the stories reflect institutionalized racism, sexism, or another force?
  • Is television a mirror of society or does television create/influence the way we live?

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