Up until now, i've never taken a class or been taught the importance of media literacy. It wasn't untill i stepped foot into Mr. Reilly's Mass Communication class where it was formally introduced to me. I've always sub-conciously known that it's important to be aware of things in our media and our society and that not everything is what it may seem to be. Getting ready to write this blog i did a little research so i could better understand media literacy. Here's some points about what i found:
"Media literacy is the ability to sift through and analyze the
messages that inform, entertain and sell to us every day."
"It's the ability to bring critical thinking skills to bear on all media— from music videos and Web environments to product placement in films and virtual displays on NHL hockey boards."
"It's about asking pertinent questions about what's there, and noticing what's not there."
"And it's the instinct to question what lies behind media productions— the motives, the money, the values and the ownership— and to be aware of how these factors influence content."
In combination with Mr. Reilly's class and after reading these points, it reenforced my subconcious thought of being aware of the media that i see on a day to day basis. For example,
i remember one class we watched a youtube video on a beer commercial. I see these commercials all of the time, but before unversity i never really thought all that much about them. I did think they were sometimes egotistical on the man's part (no offence to any guys out there) and i did sometimes think their information was blown out of proportion. But when Mr. Reilly went through with us and pointed out things that could be taken the wrong way, and some possible interesting meanings behind certain occurances in the short clip. In the end i realized how degrading the commercial really was for women-a conclusion i would never have reached if i had seen it during a break in my favorite tv show.
In my previous blog about advertising, i think the theory of media literacy and decoding advertising could go hand in hand quite nicely. I think it's crucial for our generation and future generations to become media literate early on in life. To be able to think with an open mind but to also take a grain of salt with everything that is shown to them. To be able to think on their own! To ask the right questions in order to find the right answers.
Tallim, Jane. "What Is Media Literacy?" Copyright 2008. Media Awareness Network. 5 October 2008. <http://www.media-awareness.ca/english/teachers/media_literacy/what_is_media_literacy.cfm>