To be honest, in week one, I didn’t really know what to expect from BCM110. In the beginning, the thought of expressing and sharing my views publicly on WordPress freaked me out and put me off —I have always been self conscious of my work and to have it displayed for the whole world to see was pretty scary! However, now I really appreciate it. It has not only helped me to develop my own critical and analytical skills, it has also made me more confident.
The past six weeks of study have confirmed my critical thinking of the role of media in our society. I have always been quite skeptical of the media. As a young adult who likes to keep up-to-date with current and political affairs, it angers me when I am only given a restricted viewpoint. My research of the 2013 Federal Election made me realise how media ownership can have a negative impact on the core values of democracy. Such values are compromised when the media abuses its centralised power and projects its own narrow views. I like to form my own informed opinion; not be ‘spoon-fed’ an opinion. Elizabeth Hart’s reading reminded me of the importance of being cautious of the messages I read and understanding the relevance behind the creator of those messages.
I also learnt about the ‘media effects model’ and how it invalidly claims that there is a direct link between what individuals consume from the mass media and their subsequent behaviours. While I agree that the model adopts a ‘backwards’ approach and unfairly blames the media for anti-social behaviours; I do believe that the mass media has created a new modern culture which has shaped our behaviours and attitudes. My BCM studies further cemented this belief when I examined the relationship between the media and body image issues amongst young men and women. Kate Bowles’ reading made me more mindful of how representation (which is deliberate and conscious) in advertising can have a significant psychological impact on the audience’ understanding of what is considered ‘right’, ’real’ and ‘normal’. Similarly, Mitchell Hobbs’ reading proved to be useful in understanding the techniques employed by the media to convey messages to its audience. As a recipient of media texts myself, I am now more aware of the power behind semiotics in advertising.
Through WordPress and the Moodle Twitter feed, I have been exposed to a multi-faceted views and perspectives of my fellow BCM students on media-related issues. I have throughly enjoyed reading the blogs of other students. It was comforting knowing that other students had similar views to me. However, I have also been challenged and confronted by other viewpoints. This is good as it has encouraged me to see issues from different angles. I also really enjoyed viewing the additional material, texts and examples other students referred to in their blogs. One post I found quite interesting was Courtney Berthaly’s Is social media to blame for anti-social behaviour? blog, which considered parents’ roles in fostering their child’s social media use. I also enjoyed Deekw93’s The Image Cannot Lie blog, which taught me about the sad truth behind cage-free eggs and chickens.
In closing, my BCM110 WordPress journey has been an enjoyable and rewarding experience. I have learnt a lot and I am grateful for this opportunity!
…However, I could also have done with Ryan Gosling lending me his scarf when I was blogging 😉