A discussion post and reply (OTM discussion 5)
We are going to do something a little bit different for this discussion. The first and second prompts are based on the most recent podcast; the third prompts is based on a past podcast. The prompts will include the link to a specific segment and you can respond to that prompt.
Instructions: (PLEASE READ!)
1. Listen to the podcast segment linked to your prompt of choice.
2. Choose ONE of the three prompts listed below and write a discussion post with your response. Be sure to (1) answer the questions provided in the prompt and (2) make clear connections between the content of the podcast and relevant course material.
3. After you make an initial post, choose a post made by one of your classmates and write a response. Be sure to (1) respond thoughtfully to what was discussed in the original post and (2) go beyond simply saying whether you agree or giving compliments. The goal of writing responses is to elaborate on what was originally discussed and to carry on the conversation.
A detailed version of the rubric for discussion assignments may be found here: On the Media Discussion Rubric
Your initial discussion post is due no later than THURSDAY 4/14/22 at 11:59 PM
Your response to a peer is due no later than MONDAY 4/18/22 at 11:59 PM
NOTE: There is no flexibility regarding deadlines. However, if you miss the opportunity to create an initial post by Thursday, you may still respond to a peer by Monday and earn credit for that part of the assignment.
Another NOTE: The class is divided into groups for discussion assignments. This means you will be able to view responses from other members of your group, but not the entire class.
Additional information about expectations for discussion assignments may be found here (also on D2L under Content > Start Here): On the Media Discussion Directions
If you have any questions or concerns regarding discussions, feel free to contact Daniel, your TA, at email@example.com
In the first segment of the OTM podcast, Gladstone speaks with science journalist Ed Yong about the population’s acceptance of certain narratives about the pandemic. Yong argues that this is concerning because marginalized communities’ experiences during the pandemic are being ignored.
In class we learned about the values in American journalism as explained by Herbert Gans. Using key concepts from course material and specific examples mentioned in the OTM episode, discuss:
What are some of the reasons that Yong offers for why there is not more concern about the number of COVID deaths? How does this relate to the values of news media?
How can the subjective values of news judgments affect how we understand how COVID 19 has affected marginalized communities? Which do you think has the strongest effect and why?
In the last segment of the OTM podcast, Micah Loewinger discusses author Kurt Vonnegut’s theory of the shapes of stories, which argues that there are certain story trajectories that continually entertain audiences. Loewinger and the guests discuss the “shape” of the pandemic and how that has affected media narratives about it.
In class we learned about what makes events newsworthy and some of the potential issues with news culture. Using key concepts from the course material and specific examples mentioned in the OTM episode, discuss:
What are some of the factors that Loewinger and the guest discussed that affect the newsworthiness of the pandemic? Which criteria do you think affect COVID reporting the most? Why?
Which elements of news culture reinforce or go against the shape of stories? How does that help or hurt how the public understands the status of the pandemic?
In a segment from the June 2021 OTM podcast, Micah Loewinger talks about Emily Wilder who was fired from the Associated Press for being open about her activism on social media. Despite the AP expressing that their decision was not the result of bad faith mobs, Loewinger discusses the costs of and challenges surrounding objectivity.
In class we learned about objectivity and balance. We also discussed ratings bias and how news organizations attempt to increase viewership. Using key concepts from the course material and specific examples mentioned in the OTM episode, discuss:
Is objectivity possible in a digital age world? In what ways can journalism still be objective? In which ways can it not?
What might be some reasons that current media organizations would not want to violate objectivity? Do you agree with some of the decisions Keller discussed in the podcast? Why or why not?