The Magic Window
A perspective that regards media messages as a window on the world that presents the actual occurrences from the real world in an undistorted manner.
Dimensions of Reality
Social utility judgement- based on whether viewers believe they can use the information in the portrayal in their own lives. Identity judgement- based on a feeling of parasitical involvement with particular characters.
Factuality & Plausibility
Factuality- did it happen? Plausibility- could it happen?
Message presented as reality to resonate with the audience’s experience and make it have the potential to be useful in everyday situations, must be “sweetened” to take a step outside audience’s every day existence.
the more media we consume, the more our perception of reality fits that media depiction.
Fundamental Attribution Error
when we make attributions of other, we’re more likely to blame it on the person’s personality. Don’t know the context of their actions.
The closer something gets to human like, the more uncomfortable it gets. Messes with our perception of what’s real and what’s not. Emotional response to dead bodies, human-like robots, prosthetics, etc.
The Four Journalistic Values
1. Entertainment - if it is not entertaining and drawing audiences then it will die. 2. Objectivity – no matter what must present both sides no matter how hard it is. 3. Informativeness – the news has to be new, it has to tell us something new, cannot tell us stuff we already know. 4. Brevity – it needs to be short and brief
Three Characteristics of Objectivity
1. Independence – being free from political pressures and ownership. 2. Balance – for any issue you need to present opposing sides of any feature, putting both sides out there and letting the public decide what side to follow. 3. Non evaluate – you cannot pass judgment on either side, just present the facts.
Constraints on News Stories
Deadlines – prevent journalists from gathering all the facts and presenting a complete and accurate story about the event. Resource Limitations – not enough resources to cover EVERYTHING so must pick and choose. Geographical Focus — certain parts of the world get more coverage than others.
The media doesn’t tell us what to think, they tell us what to think about. Our attitudes and beliefs aren’t going to be changed by what’s in the news media.
Media coverage of suicide related to suicide rates
When news covers a suicide, rates of suicide go up. The more coverage, the more of an increase in the suicide rate. The rate goes up where the most news coverage on suicide is-not where the suicide occurred.
Coroner Classification Effect
A coroner has to draw a conclusion based on evidence, lots of guess work. Ex: did Heath Ledger commit suicide or did he overdose on accident? But because of suicide news coverage, a coroner is more likely to determine a death as a suicide than an accident. Suicide rate looks like it’s going up because of these ambiguous deaths, and there is no decrease in other types of deaths.
Precipitation, not Causation
The media coverage precipitates suicide, but does it cause suicides? Causes people to commit suicide sooner than they already would have, rather than someone committing suicide if they’ve never really considered it.
The Sports Frame
How the score is changing, the analysis, “they lost because…” Political coverage is similar to coverage of a sports event
Why the sports frame?
Because it fits the journalistic values. Sports are a contest- they are entertaining, dramatic, something that can be presented in an objective way. It would be more difficult to use the problem proposal performance method because it would be non objective, you would have to evaluate the candidates.
We know very little about what the candidates want to do in office, their plans, proposals, policies, etc. We focus too much on their strategies and why they give a speech.
Makes us more cynical about politics and politicians.
The Entertainment Formula
Conflict, some problem characters face, conflict heightens, rises to a set of climactic scenes where the problem is resolved
for suspense to occur, there needs to be a conflict with 2 possible outcomes, the outcome has to be uncertain, have to have a strong preference for one outcome over the other- achieved through character identification. The more we care about the characters, the more suspense we will feel. To maximize suspense- really want something to happen, make it look very unlikely to happen.
humor that happens at someone else’s expense, there’s a victim, humor comes from laughing at that victim.
Research on the enjoyment of violence
Research suggests that we would actually enjoy violent shows if the violence was taken out. So why do we still want to watch these violent shows? Violence provides a short hand for action, suspense, although it comes with a cost: disgust, aversive emotions, etc.
Gender Roles & Horror Films
Natural reaction to fear (male & female) is to look/run away- but when you’re sitting in a movie theater, females typically cover their face/look away, while males usually keep looking, sometimes laugh. “It’s not masculine to show fear,” Study shows that a guy thinks a girl is more attractive if she’s scared, girl thinks a guy is more attractive if he isn’t scared. Changes perceptions of physical attractiveness.
6 Goals of Advertising
1. To get consumers’ attention. 2. Once they get our attention they need us to remember their product, it must stick with us in some way. 3. Changing Attitude – how well does advertising change our attitudes about a brand or product. 4. Emotion – changing emotions in a positive way. 5. Behavior – (ULTIMATE GOAL) point of advertising is to get people to buy product. 6. Create a connection between audience’s needs and product.
Why Celebrity Endorsers?
To be more relatable- we know these celebrities, can relate to them more than a random actor, usually have a positive identification with them.
We want to have likes and dislikes that are similar to those of people that we like, and dissimilar to people that we don’t like. The problem is, if someone has a negative relation to a celebrity, they’ll have a negative relation to the product they’re associated with. It can backfire.
Congruence & Credibility
More credible ads will be more successful. Congruence: how closely linked are the celebrity and the characteristics of the product? If they are not congruent, it will not be as successful. It damages the persuasive appeal. Celebrities can backfire.
Visual and Social Perspectives with children
Visual perspective is easier than social perspective- when a kid can understand that what they see is different from what you see, they can understand visual perspective. But it is much harder to understand social perspective, where it is much harder to understand what other people are thinking and feeling. They can’t understand that commercials have a different point of view.