For my Mass Communications 101 class we were asked to do without all forms of mass media for two consecutive days and to record our feeling about our experience. This should be a breeze right? I had no clue what I was getting myself into.
I would consider myself not very reliant on technology and different forms of media. I am certainly not one of those people we all know that is constantly watching t.v., listening to the radio, checking Facebook, checking/sending emails, surfing the web, or whatever it is they do for hours at a time on their desktops, laptops, Ipads, smart phones, etc. Therefore, when I found out we had to do this assignment I didn’t think anything of it. Why should this be so hard? My parents are constantly talking about the legends of the “old days” when everything was hand written, there was no internet or cell phones, and t.v. was essentially non existent. They survived didn’t they, so why can’t I?
I did not account for the fact that these days it is a virtual world that we live in. From contacting people to researching a topic, everything is done through some form of media technology. It is IMPOSSIBLE to completely avoid all forms of media unless you lock yourself in a closet blindfolded with ear plugs on, and that might not even be enough.
Judging by my previous statement you can probably guess that I was not very successful in avoiding all forms of media. Even though it was only for two days, it would have been impossible to not fail out of school if I did not use the internet. However, I did do my best to not use my phone, watch t.v, or listen to the radio. This was significantly more difficult than I thought it was going to be. For example, I thought a good way to avoid media would be a long workout after I arrived home from class. I figured this would not only help me avoid media while I was working out, but I would also be tired when I got home so I could just do my homework and go to sleep. It did not quite work out this way. I forgot the gym is covered wall to wall with t.v.’s. I was so aggravated from my technology withdrawal that I just left immediately.
This study has showed me how truly dependent our generation really is on technology whether we want to be or not. It also increased my awareness to the billions of forms of media that are constantly around us. Most importantly, this assignment has showed me that I, like every other college student these days, completely rely on media in one form or another.
Have you ever taken a minute to think about how present media is in the world we live in today? Well for my Mass Communications 101 class we were asked to keep an hour-by-hour daily diary for two consecutive days that would list all the media we were exposed to or “consumed.” Going in to the assignment I didn’t think my perception of media would change at all, but I was in for one hell of a surprise: MEDIA IS EVERYWHERE!
Before this assignment I, like most people my age, never took the time to take a look around during every day life to analyze the abundance of Media. Even though we might not always notice it, media is all around us whether we like it or not. It is present from the time we wake up in the morning until we lay down to go to bed at night, and if you listen to the radio while you sleep like I do, there really isn’t a break at all.
What surprised me the most during the course of the two days was the constant stream of adds I was exposed to throughout the basic routine of my day. I woke up to the radio still on both days with commercials playing; therefore, I started my day off consuming media and nothing changed from there. The only time of my day where I wasn’t presented with adds was while I was in class, and that is even technically false because every time I would text, play With Friends, or pretty much use my phone in any way ( Except in Mrs. Nichols class because its just to interesting to divert my attention to my phone) I was exposed to an add in one form or another.
This over exposure to adds and other forms of media during every waking moment of my daily life got me thinking about the effects my media habits and the habits of others might have on the way we learn about the world. Is media subconsciously telling us what to do and not to do? What to buy and not to buy? Whats cool and what is lame?
Despite my discovery that I am constantly “consuming” media, I personally believe I am not being over influenced by it because most of what I believe, wear, etc. is not commonly advertised. I don’t wear name brands and my favorite place to shop is actually the thrift store. However, there certainly are a large number of people in the world that are not only influenced by every day media, but take pride in keeping up with whats commonly advertised.
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