Going With the Stream

Media in the Online Age

The Guardian has revealed plans for several UK broadcasters are in talks to create a UK streaming service to combat Netflix and Amazon.

Screen Shot 2018-05-08 at 08.05.24.pngClick to read. 

This is further evidence we can use in our exam to prove how far traditional or ‘slow media’ will go to fight to remain on top. But Netflix shows to sign of slowing down, in fact Netflix have announced they intend to invest $1billion into European original content alone and that’s just for 20108. Read more at CNET

Screen Shot 2018-05-08 at 08.10.22.png

In terms of the music industry, Spotify have revealed that just because a song is old does not mean it’s not making money. They have published the most streamed songs of the 70s, 80s and 90s and some of them are still being streamed in the millions. Read more at the BBC.

Screen Shot 2018-05-08 at 08.12.40.png

This article offers us evidence of the positive effect of Anderson’s Long Tail Theory. 

Screen Shot 2018-05-08 at 08.16.12.png


Facebook and Cambridge Analytica: Here’s what you need to know

Media in the Online Age

Social and Participatory Media is big news at the moment due to the Cambridge Analytica and Facebook data breach. Clearly, this is terrific news for students of Media in the Online Age and luckily for us the lovely folks over at The Next Web have put this detailed article in place to help us make sense of it. Click here or the image below.  What you must then do is consider the wider implications for Facebook and the way in which consumers use Facebook and Social Media in general.

Screen Shot 2018-03-25 at 17.11.15.png

Now go and read the article at The Verge.

Screen Shot 2018-03-25 at 17.18.11.png

NME to close print edition after 66 years

After 66 years the iconic music magazine is to close. This is a magazine I have very fond memories of and spent many hours reading it and scouring the pages looking for David Byrne and Talking Heads references!

If an iconic magazine like this can close then what does it say for the rest of the print and magazine industry? We have here further evidence that the print industry is in decline and more evidence that Andrew Keen is right.

Click the picture below to read the full Guardian article:

Screen Shot 2018-03-07 at 17.26.13.png

Also, you should check out this article from Alexis Petridis, also from The Guardian.

Click the image.

Screen Shot 2018-03-07 at 17.37.06

The Internet Is Not the Answer – podcast with Andrew Keen

Here is a 40 minute podcast with author and critic Andrew Keen talking about the values of the Internet. Click the image below.

Screen Shot 2018-03-06 at 09.55.43

Year 12 Media Reading List

Hi Year 12 Media

As promised I have produced a reading list to help with your wider reading and to help with your private study time. I am not expecting everyone to read every item on the list but I would like you to read at least two of them. Some are essays, some are books and some are magazine/journal articles.

At first glance you might wonder how they link to our course but remember that this is about wider reading and so you have to use your own insight, intellect and experience to make links. In Feb and March I will spend some time discussing these and of course they will also help with your eventual application to university.


Negative Impact of the Internet

Media in the Online Age

Here is a collection of articles, blogs and essays which look at the negative impact the Internet has had on various media industries.


Social Media is the New Smoking

In The Guardian yesterday, Sean Parker, one of the founders of Facebook, has said that they knew they were creating something which could explore the “…vulnerability in human psychology”, when they were constructing how to make Facebook more appealing.

Screen Shot 2017-11-10 at 11.20.49

Parker goes on to say how they exploited customers by using a ‘dopamine effect’. According to Science News for Students:

Dopamine also helps with reinforcement — motivating an animal to do something again and again. Dopamine is what prompts a lab animal, for instance, to repeatedly press a lever to get tasty pellets of food. And it’s part of why humans seek out another slice of pizza. Reward and reinforcement help us learn where to find important things such as food or water, so that we can go back for more. Dopamine even affects moods. Things that are rewarding tend to make us feel pretty good.

And Psychology Today said in in 2012:

Of course, sad stories or trying moments are shared too, but the goal there is to get viewers to secrete oxytocin, the “love hormone,” and elicit their help. Feeling supported during times of crisis helps mitigate the pain caused by the release of cortisol, the stress hormone. Facebook fools our brain into believing that loved ones surround us, which historically was essential to our survival. The human brain, because it evolved thousands of years before photography, fails on many levels to recognize the difference between pictures and people.

The Guardian goes on to say:

He explained that when Facebook was being developed the objective was: “How do we consume as much of your time and conscious attention as possible?” It was this mindset that led to the creation of features such as the “like” button that would give users “a little dopamine hit” to encourage them to upload more content.

“It’s a social-validation feedback loop … exactly the kind of thing that a hacker like myself would come up with, because you’re exploiting a vulnerability in human psychology.”

But what does all this mean for media students? Consider Parker’s quote of, “How do we consume as much of your time and conscious attention as possible?” It’s clear that the primary function of Facebook is business facing but that shouldn’t be a surprise to us. It’s the strange place of ‘cognitive dissonance’ in which we find ourselves. We know Facebook and other social media companies are based on an economic model and that they have no real obligation to make our lives better yet we somehow choose to forget all that and jump head first into the abyss. There are many reports of how social media is harmful to our mental health and yet we keep scrolling by, keep double-tapping for love and retweeting that hilarious meme.

It’s almost as if social media is the new smoking. We know it’s bad for our health but we choose not to think about it. We choose instead to keep puffing away, willingly harming our self-esteem, attention span and understanding of the world around us. Got a light?