Archive for November, 2010

Media Effects: Distraction


Playing Wii or Reading a Book?


Distraction is one of the media effects in today’s world. Having to choose between reading a book, being hook-up to Facebook is not a hard choice. We must likely chose to be connected on Facebook. Today, reading a book takes me hours. I have lost the habit of reading because of the Internet. I prefer to be downloading the latest songs, or checking clothing web pages rather than getting myself illustrated with a good book. This is what the article Growing Up Digital, Wired for Distraction is related to. How teenagers and young adults are getting distracted by the new media.

My little sister named Liz, who is currently cursing her seventh grade, has been struggling with that. According to my mom, Liz takes about four hours just to read a book chapter of 40 pages. Instead, it takes her less than 30 min. to pass a whole world of Mario Cars on Wii. My little sister is actually failing her Algebra curse. Distractions like Facebook, You Tube, and Wii games are the main distractions that she is facing. But my little sister is not the only one; Vishal Singh is facing them too. He prefers to play video games 10 hours a week, and make videos. According to his professors, Singh is an 17 year-old bright kid who is caught between two worlds.

Vishal Singh

The question is why kids like Liz and Vishal are having a hard time focusing at school? According to Michael Rich, an associate professor at Harvard Medical School and executive director of the Center on Media and Child Health in Boston, kids are getting distracted because their brains are getting fulfilled with several tasks, instead of keeping one at the time. Kids are jumping from one thing to the next one. He says the effects could be:

“The worry is we’re raising a generation of kids in front of screens whose brains are going to be wired differently.”


Professors have started to notice the fact that students sometimes no longer pay attention to lectures because they are not part of their interests anymore. They have started to integrate technology to lectures as part of their new way of teaching in order to catch back students attentions. A true example would be from the principal, David Reilly, who is trying to find a way to gain attention back from students. He says:

“I am trying to take back their attention from their BlackBerrys and video games, to a degree; I’m using technology to do it.”  

I noticed the same trend in my Fundamental of the Internet class. At the beginning of the semester, my professor used to give his class only by lecturing on Power Point slides. There were students who in the middle of the class stood up and left. Now, that my professor has started to do a more interactive class by using the class computers; I have noticed a difference in the way my classmates pay attention. They seem more interested with the class material.

Because we are growing up in this technology era, it is inevitable to get distracted by media. We should use media to find new interactive ways of learning like using e-books and i-pads. Reading is a habit we should never let go.




Marshall McLuhan: The Mass Communication Pioneer


Marshall McLuhan



Marshall McLuhan

We live today in a merging world of technologies. Technology is shaping our world and society. As a student majoring Mass Communication, I consider every student involve in this career should have some knowledge of Marshall McLuhan because of the following reasons:

  • He persuaded the study of Mass Communications.
  • He stated the theory of Technology as Extensions of the human body.
  • He foreshadowed the merging of mass media into the new media which is the Internet.
  • He divided media into hot and cool media. 


“We shape our tools and they in turn shape us.”

Through his life, he persuaded the study of Mass Communications because he wanted people to know about how important is to know how the communication process produces changes within our society. Technology and communication go together by hand; as one evolves the other one does too. Every time they evolve; changes occur transforming our interactions as human beings. McLuhan explains this change with the appearance of the printing press, and the changes it brought.


Technology as Extensions of the Human Body

According to McLuhan, technology is like extensions of the human body. For example: When we created cars, we extended our legs which are extensions of our body. McLuhan stated that creating an extension will cause an amputation. What he meant by that is that by creating a car, we are amputating our ability to walk.  It is like a cause an effect situation; every extension that takes places will modify some other extension.




“The Medium is the message.”


Through this quote: “The Medium is the message.”, McLuhan is trying to convey the message that whether there are present or future situations; there solution or answer will always be found in the way mass media help this situation to take place. It is like if the Medium is trying to tell us in the way “future” it is going to shape itself. That is way Marshall McLuhan is sometimes referred as “The Oracle of The Electronic Age. His point to reach out is the fact that the “channel” through which the message is convey is the one that completely shapes the message.


“Media is hot and cool.”


According to McLuhan, media is “hot” when it contains a high resolution. Due to its high resolution it will contain a low amount of audiences. For example:  We can consider a book (print media) because it is hot and linear. Its audiences have in their hands all the information. Instead, media is “cool” when it contains a low resolution. Due to its low resolution, it will contain a higher amount of audiences than the hot media because it will offer interaction to the audience. For example: We can consider electronic broadcast media cool and interactive because it makes you as an audience to go in search of the missing information.  Through this classification of media, we can also see how McLuhan foreshadows the merging of Media. For example: For the past couple of years, newspapers readers have been declining. Why? Because nowadays, audiences prefer to go online in order to get inform. The internet (new media) allows them to find videos, more pictures, and more information that the newspaper will not offer them. In other words, the new media offer its audience interaction that is why it is cool.


Marshall McLuhan lived, and still lives today in Media because of his persuasive attitude towards the study of Mass Communications, for his theory of technology as extensions of the human body, for his foreshadows towards the merging of masses, and for his classification of hot and cool media.  For all these reasons, Marshall McLuhan is a pioneer in the field of Mass Communications.


Marshall McLuhan


Marshall McLuhan’s Famous Quotes

  • As technology advances, it reverses the characteristics of every situation again and again. The age of automation is going to be the age of ‘do it yourself.
  • In this electronic age we see ourselves being translated more and more into the form of information, moving toward the technological extension of consciousness.
  • All media exist to invest our lives with artificial perceptions and arbitrary values.

Angie G. Morris: A Proactive Woman

The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack in will.

Vince Lombardi

Angie G. Norris

According to Vince Lombardi will is what a successful person must possess. Angie Gulledge Norris, a Corporate Communications Manager and Hiring Manager at Technology Partners Inc., is a woman that thanks to her willingness in life has achieve a successful carrier. Angie G. Norris participated in my Survey of Professional Media class as a guest speaker. During her speech, she talked about her current and past jobs, her education, and she shared to us a series of recommendations and advices toward our future carriers.  

Norris’s currently job is Business Development Manager at Technology Partners. As a Corporate Communications Manager, Angie provides the internal company communications, develops sponsorship ads and campaigns, organizes and executes all company events, manages printing like printing materials, assists in strengthening branding and manages the Company’s social media. Some of her specialties are: marketing, business development, request for proposals (RFPs), corporate communications, sponsorship ads, social media, etc. Before working at Technology Partners, she used to be a Marketing Communications Specialist at Spartech Corporation, a Strategic Marketing & Vendor Coordinator at A.G. Edwards and a Financial Consultant Assistant at A.G. Edwards.

“Be the best of the best.”

Angie G. Norris


Norris went through what almost every college student goes through: uncertainty and indecision. During college, she was studying math because she wanted to be a math professor as her future carrier. She changed her mind as her dad convinced to study another carrier that would bring her a better future, so she stated majoring in Finance. Why Finance? According to Norris because it was one of the “hot jobs” by the time.  Nowadays, she works for something totally different from what she studied. She is on top on her game because she went in search for a job that she liked. She turned herself into a proactive person. Learning by her own guided her to become what is now a successful working woman.

“Take initiative; be on top of your game.”

Angie G. Norris

Taking an advice into account will always give you wisdom at the end. Let’s take into account  Angie G. Norris advices which are:

  1. Earn respect at your workplace.
  2. Be careful with the usage of personal social media at work.
  3. Be proactive and start learning software’s like Microsoft, Excel, Power Point, Photoshop, Dreamweaver and Flash.
  4. Do an internship related to your major in order to gain more experience.
  5. Take advantage of the benefits of the company you work for.
  6. Try everyday to become more a multitasked type of person.
  7. Learn social skills that will help you manage yourself in a more professional way at work.
  8. Do some research about your interests.

 Sometimes in life, we experience moments of doubt because we don’t know what we want to do with our lives. Angie G. Norris had those moments too, but she went in search for a job that she really enjoy working for. Today, she shares her learning experience, and advises everyone to go out in search for what you really want in life. 

If you would like to contact Angie G. Norris contact her at:



The New Advertising Era

The New Advertising Era

Imagine the day in which old banner ads will be gone from the public eyes? Would that day really come? Do you picture yourself only reading ads from your i-phone or PC?

Well, according to an article posted by Dorian Benkoil, a Poynter Online blogger about the intersection of news and technology, brings up how Social media such as Twitter and Facebook are rapidly becoming the new source of advertising. As Social Media Grows, What Will Become of the Plain Old Banner Ad? This article talks about how the so-called online “display” advertising is taking over traditional banners for advertising. During the trade organization’s MIXX conference both Facebook and Twitter CEO’s talked about the features of each of their platform. Dick Costolo, who was just named Twitter CEO, talked about how the power of Twitter’s platform new features like Promoted Tweets and Promoted Trends would bring new advertising efforts. Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, talked about the ways that ads can be used on Facebook. Mainly at the conference was discussed how social interactions on fan pages an through Facebook Connect get consumers to buy at a much higher rate than advertising alone has ever has.

But the true question would be is really social media killing display ads?

According to David Silverman, in a PricewaterhouseCoopers report prepared with the IAB, there is more than a third of almost $23 billion spent on Internet advertising. In a closer look at the Pricewaterhouse study shows that while display ads ticked up to a 35 percent share of ad spending in 2009 ( from 33 percent in 2008), search grew by the same 2 percentage points but higher dollar amount (from 45 percent to 47 percent). Search’s share has risen sharply over the past four years while banners have been essentially flat. During the conference, Like Facebook and Twitter YouTube executives also stand out bringing out to the table their new “cost-per-view” advertising format, in which a viewer is giving a choice of which ad to see in a video, or giving the choice to skip an ad after five seconds. The marketer pays only for a video that has been shown. According to the executives these types of ads can be 10 times as high as for interruptive ads.

Ordinary Banners

Open Graph (with Facebook Connect)

Is there hope? There is always hope…

Social Media is the hope for display ads because of its ability to customize ads based on user interaction. According to Barry Salzman, Google’s managing director for media and platforms for the Americas, said that by 2015, 75 percent of ads will be “socially enabled.”

This article caught my attention because during our history we have experience certain transitions that in a way or another always bring change into our lives.  For example, when television came out everybody thought was the end of radio, but it was not. We are experiencing the same now with the new type of advertising that is taking over the traditional one. It Looks like Social Media is killing traditional ads, but is actually shifting it towards a new era. There are things that need sometimes a twist, a change in order to keep alive or a continuity.

Sometimes change bring challenge to us. In one hand, current professionals in advertising and advertisers might be wondering about their jobs, and how they can keep up to date their businesses now that advertising is shifting towards a new era. On the other hand, it’s a call to amateur advertisers and a call of attention towards students like me majoring on Advertising. Whether is going to be traditionally advertised or “socially enabled” it would be like Marshall McLuhan quoted “All Advertising advertises advertising.”

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