Tag Archives: Digital Communication

What Metropolis (2001 Film) Teaches Us About “Connection, Identity, and The Meaning of Color”.

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Who are your main characters and what do they represent within the story?

Film is such an amazing experience to watch, create, and direct. Especially genres you’ve come to love and adore since you were a child. The interesting thing about cinema is that your able to create shorts, animations, trilogies, or movies. With each having there on merit of expertise. Franchises like the movie “Alien” hold a cultural relevance of the late 70’s and early 80’s with its visual effects mainly being prosthetics. Directed by the infamous creator, Ridley Scott and the art by H.R Giger. To the Xenomorphs, to the carefully crafted ship, to the eerie atmosphere all stitch together a work of art. After this entry the audience should understand the power of film, why color is such an important component to storytelling, and finally, the importance of defining your main character/characters within the narrative.

(Osamu Tezuka manga but directed by Rintaro)

Introduction

Believe it or not, Metropolis has three different versions of its narrative. The common thread among all of them is economic, ecological, and technological progress. The era in which it is set almost seems like a 1950s film. This allows it to be its own unique thing in animated cinema. The first version of Metropolis was made and created by Fritz Lang in 1927. The second one was made by Osamu Tezaka. The last edition was revitalized and re-imagined by Rintaro based on the work of Osamu Tezaka in 2001. Luther and Andrew (2012) “Nevertheless, this cinematic imagining of future conditions of life continues to resonate strongly as the film keeps attracting spectators and critical attention, thereby offering us a significant opportunity to analyze the ideological foundations upon which we have constructed our notions of human society, including our approaches to ecology”.

Tima’s Beautiful Anomaly and Fated Destruction

As Tima is catapulted into the story without meaning or awareness, her radiant glow searches through the chaos. Created for one reason, but is given the opportunity to be something else. Her glow is defined as a memorable sequence for the audience to take in and remember. Brito and Cho (2017)”Color is one of the cognitive storytelling elements, its interpretation is captured by the subconscious and it is considered an emotional resource due to its psychological background. On the other hand, the character is also part of cognitive perception and storytelling tool, but this is interpreted consciously, character is considered as a logical resource”. Metropolis itself is a heavily industrialized world where technological advancement exceeds that of the human population. Making robots more suitable for it. Carefully look at the vibrant colors above the city and the dim colors below. They can be used interchangeably to define what’s important. Notice the massive buildings Rintaro displays to show expansion and clutter systematically. Tima, a few times throughout the film, is able to shine so brightly, giving vibrance to the city around her. I understand that Tima is a tool to be used and not to be treated as a human that would have their own thoughts and desires. Her revelation is learning she is not human but somewhere in between after being shot by Rock. Her silver tears represent the loss of her identity. Brito and Cho (2017) “Red conveys more anger, passion, happiness, whereas pink conveys a softness, charm, or courtesy. Moreover, in the world of animation, the color is usually used to emphasize certain objects or people in order to convey stronger feelings to the viewer. The main role played by the color within an animation is to convey emotions and feelings. However, they depend on the physical values of each individual, their social context and subjectivity of the observer. Josef Albers8)”.

As Kenichi attempts to grab onto the rageful Tima, hanging for her life, he tells her to grab his hand. This specific scene is taking place over the explosive city of Metropolis, with its red and orange hues. Pieces of the massive building were falling down around them. She finally looks up at Kenichi, saying, “Who am I?”. Having lost his grip, Tima falls to her demise with her consciousness intact instead of without. Kenichi later tries to find Tima’s remains in the vast debris below but is unsuccessful in his efforts. “Better to have loved than not at all”. 

How is Metropolis Being Used

“Andrew and Luther (2012) “[The logical reason an] industrial capitalist society is sustainable so long as it is infused with humanism”]. You will soon learn that the main character, Tima, was the full embodiment of that ideology in theory. At the moment she met Kenichi, it was a human experience. One without control, a guide but an accident. There’s a beautiful sequence where Kenichi and Tima are trying to escape the trigger-happy “Rock” in the barracks down under. Showing their progress in a story that has yet to tell them what’s happening. Eventually in the film, it begins to snow, which seems like a very natural thing that should happen. Although it comes off as empty and desolate. Creating an atmosphere of sorrow, after they find Pero shot and killed. Andrew and Luther (2012) “We may desire a position and perspective outside of systems—ecological, political, or economic—from which to issue cautionary warnings to ourselves, but somehow the formal composition of such cautionary narratives undermines, and thereby makes visible, the impossibility of this same desire. In other words, we see in the panoramic shots of Metropolis the contradictory imagination of ourselves as exterior to and uninvolved in this place as well as interior to and complicit with it”.

Conclusions

Not only does Metropolis explore a possible industrial future, but it does it through color. The film is able to show you massive caverns of industrial trash that have gone unused. While at the same time showing the president’s residency above the clouds. From my analysis, Metropolis was able to explore technological advancement through a multitude of colors. There’s a specific scene where Tima is able to go into the circuit system to find Kenichi. Showing the audience beams of color, ranging from red, blue, and yellow to emphasize Tima’s prowess. The addition of jazz throughout the film also added a beautiful redesign of the environment. Changing our perception of a cluttered city. I believe the film wanted us to answer the looming questions of how we see ourselves, robots, and the environment. Colors are able to show importance within a story or growth and progression within a character.

(Questions to think about)

How can you show progression on a character without telling the audience?

What do you think the robots represent in the film by reading the article?

Bibliography

Hageman, Andrew, and Luther College. “Science Fiction, Ecological Futures, and the Topography of Fritz Lang’s ‘Metropolis.’” 1Library.Co, Ecozon@, 10 Sept. 2012, https://1library.co/document/lq55n5wq-science-fiction-ecological-futures-topography-fritz-lang-metropolis.html.

Yahaira Moreno , Brito, and Cho Dong-Min. “Visual Narrative as a Color Storytelling in Disney and Ghibli Studios.” Cartoon and Animation Studies, The Korean Society of Cartoon and Animation Studies, 31 Dec. 2017, https://www.koreascience.or.kr/article/JAKO201708160569606.page.

Why Authentic Representation Matters Within Storytelling

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Introduction

White Washing

What Does Authentic Representation Provide

Conclusion

Hopefully, this analysis gives you the comprehension to understand the ins and outs of representation. Configuring why it’s crucial to how we understand the world and each other. There will always be gaps in experiences that we may or may not encounter, which is why it’s necessary for us to learn these components. Even after learning these steps, you, as the audience, will consistently apply them when crafting, creating, and producing subjects about POC or people from different cultural backgrounds. By the end of this entry, you should be able to understand the cultural standing representation has, the empowerment it provides to disenfranchised groups, increase the written dialogue about POC, and find solutions for change and prosperity.


Introduction

Where do we start? We could talk about the lack of depth communities of color had in film between 1888 and the 1960’s. The constant stereotyping up until the mid 2000’s, atrocious caricatures on major merchandise, creating token characters just to silence criticism about a show or movie, the constant double standards, sexism, and the understanding that the only way to garner empathy or sympathy from people if you were in the LGBTQ community was if your partner died, you died, or you killed yourself (the list goes on). Then the 2010’s happened, which pivoted a lot of representation for the better. Giving disenfranchised communities the ability to tell their own stories. The lack of complexity and character development regarding POC, LGBTQ characters, and people of different cultural backgrounds has always plagued the way people view them and, unfortunately, write them.

White Washing

The Gods of Egypt is the first movie that comes to mind and how heavily criticized it was for not hiring more non-white actors and actresses. At some point in the film, you can even hear Nikolaj William (who played Jamie Lannister in Game of Thrones) speak with his Danish accent. The reactions to this and many other concerns about the movie imploded on social media. Sam (2016) “Our movies now typically feature a white cast, with the exception of a few minor roles played by people of color (POC). For the second year in a row, the Oscars failed to recognize the comparatively few roles played by minorities. By doing so, the institution feeds into an endless cycle [of white washing and erasure of minority groups].” On the same note, there has been a lot of buzz about non-white actors and actresses playing traditionally white roles in a movie, show, or comic book. Posing the question, “Why is it OK when nonwhite actors play original white roles but it’s not OK when white actors play nonwhite roles?”.

Most of the time, when nonwhite characters are created, their race, their culture, and their behavior (to some degree) are implemented. Regardless of reckless or ignorant ideas that surround the character before they debut. Characters such as Storm, Bishop, Static Shock, John Stewart, Spectrum, Night Crawler, Cyborg, Luke Cage, and Blade are all examples of heroes whose identity is directly linked to who they are as icons (Stan Lee and other creators made it abundantly clear of this fact). Now, does this make it OK for nonwhite actors and actresses to play traditionally white superheroes? Not exactly. Although anybody can play the Fantastic Four because it’s based more on an ideology rather than a single identity (let alone adversity). I’m a super big fan of superheroes, so taking it case by case is OK.

Sam (2016) “There is no representation. When people of color critique the lack of inclusivity, they’re given characters who are 1-dimensional caricatures of their culture in order to appease critics. This is why we see so much of the “ghetto” black women, “hard working Mexican immigrant,” “dragon lady” Asian women. But these characters don’t serve enough of a purpose and often end up being very, very small parts. When this is critiqued, we are given larger and often times more offensive roles like the
“Sexually submissive” Asian women, “thug” black men, “gangbanger” Hispanic men, etc. These images just normalize an image of POC that is entirely unwarranted”.

What Does Authentic Representation Provide

The answer lies in the script in which the audience will never see until its debut. Portteia (2020) “The impact a film holds on its viewers is determined by the script, and we need diverse writers who have unheard stories to aid in the film industry’s growth. Diversity is the solution”. People seem to think that movies like Indiana Jones or Mission Impossible are being sucked into a vacuum, never to be seen again, which isn’t true. Those movies that you like will still be there, but there will also be movies that include everyone. This also includes fantasy and other genres as well. Portteia (2020) “Film companies need to hire scriptwriters of diverse backgrounds. The lack of diversity can be a reason for the lack of new and inspiring stories. Without hiring these new diverse writers striving to test the boundaries and create change, we get stuck in a loop of poorly written movies that are merely a reflection of the exclusive film industry of the 1900s”. What is stopping you from engaging and learning about other people’s stories? Everyone has one.

Conclusion

Do I agree with everything in Porttiea’s article specifically, no. Although she did make a lot of points about perspective writing. Instead of using the word harmful, I would have said unrealistic and disingenuous when it came to representing different communities on screen with a lack thereof attitude. Meaning, if you’re going to write about a person, place or thing, you need to do the research to fully understand what you’re writing about.

Bibliography

Tracy, Sam. “White Washing.” Https://Digitalcommons.library.umaine.edu, University of Maine’s Student News Paper, 23 Nov. 2016, https://digitalcommons.library.umaine.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1186&context=racial_justice.

Davidson, Portteia, and Peggy Woods. “Best Text Collection – Umass.” Https://Scholarworks.umass.edu, University of Massachusetts Amherst, 13 Nov. 2020, https://scholarworks.umass.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1009&context=best_text.

Hey! (Introductory Post)

Hey everyone, My name is Quinton. This is extremely new for me. I’ve never heard of or used WordPress. If I had ran across it before I don’t remember. I’m always up for new challenges. Its a plus that this allows for website creation because I want to use something like this in the future for personal reasons. I’d originally only known about Wix.com. Interesting!

Benefits of Social Media On: Businesses

It is obvious by now that social media has taken over the way that people and companies advertise and communicate, but how? The changes are significant and have their benefits. In this three-part blog series, I will be explaining the benefits of social media’s influence on three major subjects: visual media, music artists, and businesses. These posts will hopefully be informative to those who don’t know about the benefits in relation to these topics, as well as entertain those who do know the benefits, and hopefully teach them something they don’t know. 

Welcome!

Over the course of the last two posts I talked about the benefits of social media on visual media and music artists. This time, I will explain how social media benefits startups and existing businesses.

The rise of social media has created a new way for businesses to market themselves in clever ways while simultaneously reaching a wide audience, for relatively low cost. Matt Risinger, a sort of building scientist, discovered the advantage of using YouTube to promote his business. As quoted in The New Rules of Marketing and PR, Risinger said,”I didn’t get huge traction at first, but I kept going. Even though I might have only 300 views on a video, one of those people watching might be an architect in Austin who would say something to me. Or maybe it was a potential client who watched before they interviewed me for their project. They felt like they knew me at a meeting—even though I’d never met them before—because they could watch a video of me. I got enough feedback that made me realize this was worthwhile” (Scott, 2017 p. 97). This is a textbook example of how video content can benefit a business. Picking this quote apart, we not only see that video content is obviously helpful for visually showing off a product or service, but it can be used to instill a feeling of confidence, or credibility for the business and its people. Risinger started out with a cheap camera and little viewers, but now has a larger audience and much higher quality video content.

By now it is not too difficult to figure out how businesses can exclusively benefit from social media, but Business2Community.com mentioned one benefit that maybe isn’t everyone’s first thought. This benefit is called competitive analysis, and this is what Dhariana Lozano of Business2Community.com has to say about it: “You can use social media to target your competition’s fans, see what they may be doing that you can improve on – or simply identify ways to stand out within your industry” (Lozano, 2016).  This is an interesting angle that seems only achievable on social media, where all marketing is focused and public.

There obviously are more advantages for businesses who utilize social media, but I covered a couple here in this post.

It is east to see how much social media platforms have positively affected many people and entities such as visual media, music artist, and businesses. I hope that over the course of these posts, you have learned something and have a positive outlook on social media.

Thank you for reading!

Sources:

https://www.business2community.com/social-media/10-key-benefits-social-media-business-01461178

The New Rules of Marketing and PR: 6th Edition by David Meerman Scott (2017)

 

Is social media the communication method of the future?

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My goal for my third post is to discuss if social media is going to continue to be the communication method of the future. The third topic I would like to discuss is the future for social media and what that means for communication. My audience for this posting would be anyone who uses social media, students and teachers in this class, anyone in the communication field and anyone who uses social media for communication.

This week’s reading discusses communication for development. It says that ‘mobile phones have created opportunities that we never dreamt of and two-way communication is exploding all over the internet.’ Do you think that social media can assist in developing communication for the future?

I, myself am not so sure. I think it’s gotten to the point where communication has felt like it has become so impersonal. When people see their phone ringing for a phone conversation they will deny the call, then proceed to text that person, did you call in hopes of avoiding a phone conversation. I have personally noticed this at work with both myself and co workers. We rely so heavily on email, texting and other impersonal modes of communication that we do anything we can to avoid people coming into the office and phone conversations. My boss will kindly have to remind all of us that email is good to track infromation but there is definitely a time and place that a phone call or in person meeting is warranted and that we shouldn’t forget that.

In addition, with technology continuing to advance, it’s increasing the unique ways we can communicate with one another. For companies, according to getvoip.com, this includes but not limited to live chat or video call option with staff on websites, opt-in text messaging notifications, mobile friendly account access, 24 hour customer service, social media personality. I have used the live chat option on clothing websites and am a huge fan. I feel that it get’s the information I need quicker and makes me feel taken care of.

It’s unsure of social media will continue to be the communication method of the future but I think from the way things have been going there is a strong chance that it will continue on that path.

Communication Through Social Media

Audience: Millennials

Through history our communication technique’s and skills have changed and evolved because of social media. There was a time where the internet was not around and the way we communicated was strictly through phone, letter or a face to face interaction. Social media has changed the way  we will forever communicate with people, friends and family from all over the world.

One thing researchers focused on was the personal barrier that is broken down through social media. People venting and releasing their problems on social media has became a normal thing. So before social media people wouldn’t have a conversation with their coworker’s about personals things. Although now with social media and people already having those things out there makes the conversation more approachable. Another point they focused on was how communication has changed though social media and how we short phrase everything. We have developed new words for other words or instead writing out words we abbrievate for example I don’t Know instead we would say idk which would be its short phrase. Some researchers have talked about how these things can actually be negative in the academic environment with performance because this is not the proper communication style. Although should schools have a focus on this new age communication because it may not be going  anywhere? Also a point researchers focused on was the access to communicate with thousands of people from around the world is what makes communication through social media so great. This gives us ability to reach a bigger audience and interact with more people. In Chapter 5 Castell talks about the influence of technology and internet how big of impact it will play into our culture. We have all seen changes that is already happen to our culture and there will continue to be changes for how we communicate through social media we just hope they help our culture in a positve way.

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Social Media’s Influence On Communication

How has social media changed the way we engage?

Well, in a lot of ways to be honest.  Looking at the evolution of social media over the last decade has been somewhat of a whirlwind.  The dawn of the smart phone era has kick started the largest technological mobilization in human history. We are connected to the internet, in some way, almost 100% of our lives.  According to the link above on of the biggest reasons why our interactions are changing is simply due to the number of people we interact with. We now seem to care about that over-the-top social media posts from that guy you sat next to in 10th grade Biology class. Why? Because we are connected on social media! Seems pretty simple, but the general direction of our ever increasing interconnected lives is not slowing down. One of the main goals of social media is to bring people together. So is the erosion of our communication boundaries really a bad thing? I guess it depends how you use social media and how you shape your identity around your use of social media.  According to the author’s opinion the lack of filters on our communication come at a price. I would have to agree. The level of toxicity on the internet is at an all time high. However, the amount of communication being distributed and received on the internet is at an all time high as well.  Perhaps, humans have always held these extremely toxic views but had no way of expressing that message, much less have a platform to broadcast it world wide.

Similar to my last post about this topic, I took a look at a few required readings for MDST485 course. I found myself connecting the points made in Castell’s Network Society Ch. 5. – Castell describes culture of real virtuality. He argues that the enormous influence and the sheer level of importance technology and the internet have on our lives have pushed elements of our existence into the virtual realm.  There is no doubt that this is true.  The amount of time we spend on the internet is increasing each year, the use of social media platforms are always increasing, and yet we still seem to be incapable of conversing with one another respectfully.  I don’t want to believe that we are at the beginning of what will be the fall of our society but if we do not take time to realize what social media is doing to us, we simply have no chance.

Do you prepare?

(Audience: MDST485 – Goal: get their wheels turning)

Let me ask you a question.  What do you think is one of the top things that make successful people, well, successful?  I have one word for you.  Preparation.  I’ve read countless self-developement books, listened to many speeches, to many sermons, and they consistently and repeatedly talk about preparation.  If there is no preparation, the probability of success is rare.  Ask anyone.  David Meerman Scott also talks about preparation in chapter 17 of ‘The New Rules of Marketing & PR.’  He talks about the preparation of podcasting. In this chapter, he quotes the producer of ‘Marketing Over Coffee,’ who was asked how one gets started with a podcast.  His response; “I’ve found the most important thing is show preparation.”

Please tell me you all have listened to a podcast… at least one episode, even though I don’t know how you could stop at just one! If you have AND have an iPhone, the below icon should look very familiar to you.  For me, it’s the most used app on my phone. And now one of my dreams is to host my own podcast someday.  David Meerman Scott, I’m holding on to every word you write about podcasting.  (Fingers crossed!)

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I encourage two things out of you in the coming weeks.  The first thing is to start preparing for your future, in whatever way that looks like.  Write down your goals for the next year, three years, five years.  Start a new hobby by jotting down all that interests you.  Summer is coming, what are some things you want to be sure you do? Prepare for what’s to come. Prepare for YOUR successful future.

Secondly, start listening to podcasts, or if you already do, try a new one that could better your life, bring a smile to your face, push you to see a different perspective, hear stories on those who have it much, much worse than you, or literally countless more.

Stay tuned for my future blogs.  I’ll give you some intriguing recommendations. You can count on it.

Benefits of social media

benefits-of-social-media-1024x446 (1)My goal for my second blog post is to switch gears from the dark side of social media in my last post to the light side. The second topic I would like to discuss is the benefits of social media. My audience for this posting would be anyone who uses social media, students and teachers in this class and companies or people who market or campaign through social media.

Whether we like to admit it ‘our’ generation eats, sleeps and breathes social media. It’s reach and popularity is without doubt. According to www.quantumrun.com, “It’s estimated that by 2018, 2.44 billion people will be using social networks.” Yes, this might not be the healthiest trend for us to participate in however, there can be benefits from this. As we rely more on technology the need for social media platforms increases. Platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Podcasts allow for instantaneous news coverage, access to limitless information and connects us with the world all within the click of the button.

The opportunities that social media can create are endless. With recent social and political issues being brought to the surface Twitter and Instagram can be used to create awareness by trending hashtags. They can also provide information and rally people for a cause such as creating a buzz agent for the Women’s Rights Marches, Black Lives Matter protests and Most recently the March For Your Lives. If you click on the hashtag or a tagged photos it will literally connect you with millions of other people who are supporting the same cause. What method of getting information out can literally beat that?

Chapter 17 in this weeks Scott reading discusses a newer tool in social media which is Podcasting. This is something I never used to care to listen to until I found an interesting Podcast that caught my attention. I see this platform continues to take off and joining the more well known ones.

Whatever social media platform you follow, the limitless benefits are undeniable.

 

Podcasting

The audience is anyone who is new to podcasting like myself and the goal is to show how great podcasting can be.

I’m new to podcast. Shameful, right? I knew they were around but never really listened until two years ago when I was introduced to Roughing the Podcast via Twitter. The host, Di Murphy and Ted Glover go back and forth about all things related to the Minnesota Vikings. It was great to listen to them and the knowledge they had about the Vikings and football in general.

After I listened to a few shows I feel down a rabbit hole of podcast. Not just about sports though. I was listening to radio podcast, political podcast- I tend to listen few and far between to them, and comedy podcast just to name a few. What is great about them is that they provide great content without reading. I do love to read, but when I’m in the car or at work I can’t whip out a book or a magazine, and I can get the same content while driving or at my desk.

While I have a new found appreciation for podcast, I have found some that just aren’t good. In The New Rules of Marketing & PR on page 312 they talk about “show preparation.” I have heard podcast were the host weren’t prepared and it within the first five minutes the show is ruined because the host have no idea what they are talking about.

But overall, podcast have been a great discovery for me and I feel that if you are new them like I was, I suggest picking your favorite topic and start from there. Happy listening.