What Have I Learned?

By: Megan Miles

I have learned that in order to see a change in the way media sources provide information, it starts with you, and having an open mind to every bit of information available to you (or not available to you). Even though you may think you have found the answers, they may be hidden amongst a position that you don’t necessarily align yourself with. 

This class sparked my need to let go of my negative media habits and improve how I use media everyday. Since it is impossible to avoid it entirely, I would like to minimize my time online by placing my phone on time restrictions and changing the color filter settings on my phone. I think this would benefit my mental health because I tend to get caught up in the likes and arguments and I think it would lower my stress to let it go a bit more and focus on my hobbies and videos. I have been working on a YouTube channel and from now on, I will be watching extra carefully to make sure that all of the facts available are in the videos if such topics come up. 

My media diet will be less time spent online, perhaps only two hours a day, with much more time spend on editing, drawing, embroidery, hiking, photography, finding new adventures and beginning my journey as a launch team member for a new church in Boise. This class has taught me to be critical of everything that you think you know and challenge yourself to think from a different point of view. I think I struggled with the idea of putting my preconceived notions aside at first but now I am a better artist, a friend and a person who deeply wants to understand. 

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Music Has a New Role

By: Megan Miles

Music is understood by everyone no matter where you’re from. There is no doubt that music is a good source of entertainment, it helps to cheer everyone up, to calm people down, or played in parties and ceremonies to entertain guests. It also links us to our culture and tradition like the folk songs sung by great artists like Gurdas Mann, his lyrics contain many things that still linger in our culture. Music is capable of connecting people to one another. When people go to a musical concert, they are with those people who share their musical tastes and together and they feel the emotions that the music evokes. However, there seems to be a dark side to accepting fame, what are producers and record labels not being transparent about? Today’s music industry has evolved and limits creativity, taken scouts always seem to be hunting down the next star. What begins as an honest attempt to bring talent out of the woodwork, becomes a frenzy of handwork and no play. In 2017, former K-Pop star Henry Prince Mak was subjected to 24-hour work days, zero compensation, plastic surgery and suffering relationships due to the grueling nature of his record label’s contract. Stardom is no easy feat, even for American artists, it is fascinating to see how many artists have songs about feeling like robots or puppets on strings like they’re being controlled. Kesha, a well-known popstar, released her first album since 2012 and her lawsuit against Sony Music producer Dr. Luke, who she says abused her and won’t release her from her contract. The industry is so entangled with keeping up appearances that no one really seems to know about the inner workings of the industry. 

Movies=Power

By: Megan Miles

Through movies, media greatly influences social norms. People can learn about culture, like which beliefs they should follow, which values to support, and what the cultural norms are. In American movie culture it is extremely common for a woman to play a supporting role in a film. Pixar is one of the largest producers of children’s films in the world and until 2012, had never made a movie with a female in the lead role. Brave set a standard for the millions of young girls who are desperate to see strong versions of themselves. Representation is the cornerstone for building up strong role models for those who watch films or engage in media. Geena Davis is an Academy-Award winning actress and activist for gender representation who said, “if she can’t see it, she can’t be it.” Negative stereotypes people see in media can create life-long imprints which can affect their attitudes toward male and female roles in our society as well as career occupations and self-esteem. 

Filmmakers are responsible to their viewers to depict the human experience as accurately as possible, which includes people of all genders, race, and background to empathize someone unique from you. Ultimately a filmmaker is trying to evoke an emotion or response from the audience. Part of our lack of sensitivity could be related to the amount of gender inequity audience members have seen in film. Some filmmakers may feel that any response by society, positive or negative, gives meaning to their film, but film can be a dangerous tool similar to any medium. 

Dear Verizon,

To: Verizon 

From: Megan Miles

Subject: First Amendment Right Violations 

The purpose of this document is to introduce Verizon’s argues which states their First Amendment rights are being violated by net neutrality rules. Net neutrality requires that internet service providers provide equal access to all websites, rather than picking and choosing which sites a user can access or providing faster loading speeds for some sites. 

The net neutrality argument includes large ISPs who stand to gain financial benefits from tech companies, small business advocates, civil liberties activists, and everyday consumers. Verizon in particular has noticed the discrepancy and has made an FAQ page to correct the issue, yet their stance on net neutrality remains vague and difficult for consumers to understand. 

According to the FCC’s final ruling, the internet “has thrived because of its freedom and openness — the absence of any gatekeeper blocking lawful uses of the network or picking winner and losers online.” Therefore, allowing Verizon to overturn net neutrality laws would likely cause the internet’s success to decline rapidly. 

It is within my control to reject this case on the grounds that the Verizon company does not hold the same rights as a consumer and shall be treated as a business without the right to cause harm to their customers. I wish them the best of luck as they continue their journey to find a solution that works for each and every person who chooses to use their products. 

Popular Products

By: Megan Miles

Media products are economically different because any brick and mortar structure is going to cost more than electronic media. There are extra fees tacked onto having a magazine cover or billboard designed, marketed, and distributed to consumers. Electronic media has a significantly lower production and distribution cost. In the case of social media, a product marketer would pay for an ad design and the ad space, and maybe pay a few influencers to share the product through their audience. Popular social media celebrities can instantly reach an audience with products and cost much less to advertise through than most print media sources. The media industry use resources which satisfy the wants and needs of consumers, in American society this system caters mostly to men. In Miss Representation, we are shown the number of women who are on executive boards of several of the most powerful media companies in the nations which are embarrassingly low for such a “diverse” society. Consider when Patty Jenkins was announced the director of Wonder Woman in 2016, that was the first time a woman had directed a big-budget comic book movie in America’s movie history. As described in the documentary there was some backlash over encouraging women to watch a film which embraces the all-powerful female perspective. If you Google Patty Jenkins, it doesn’t mention her success, but it does concentrate on Chris Pine (Steve Trevor) who is Gal Gadot’s (Wonder Woman) male co-star. In American society a women’s success and empowerment is overshadowed by male influence and what consumers are accustomed to. 

Sexual Assault in Athletic Department

By: Megan Miles

Boise State Unifies its Brand Identity with New B Logo ...

In light of recent news, the U.S. Department of Education has announced they have begun investigations of several former student athletes who have filed lawsuits against Boise State University, for failing to address their claims of sexual assault by coaches and other student-athletes. We at the university have taken essential positive steps toward a safer learning environment for every student on campus under the NCAA’s recent adoption of a sexual violence policy

It was determined that the athletic department at the university violated Title IX because it did not immediately investigate the complaints of the athletes even though the claims were thorough, nor did it prevent a sexually hostile environment from expanding throughout the campus.

Going forward Boise State University has agreed to the following conditions to prevent the harm of our fellow Broncos and prevent economic disparity:

  • The athletics department will be informed and compliant with NCAA policies and processes regarding sexual violence prevention or proper termination will ensue as a result of those actions. 
  • All student-athletes, coaches and staff have been educated each year on sexual violence prevention, intervention and response. 

If you see or hear of sexual violence, or are a victim of assault report it to the Dean of Students Office. If there is a safety/security concern please contact campus security, and talk to your Resident Assistant and/or Resident Director. If you need additional assistance, please reach out to Boise State’s Health Services to seek out counseling assistance including walk-in assistance.

We deeply care about you, our communities, and one another here at Boise State. This campus is a place where you have the right to feel safe. This is a place where you have the right to feel welcome. This is a place where you have the right to feel worth it, and as our Interim President of Boise State says, “I ask all Broncos to share in my commitment to support each and every member of our diverse community through these times of increasing threats and violence.”

Important By Association

By: Megan Miles

I was hired by my sister’s childhood friend, once her business was funded by some investors she wanted photos to advertise her product on Instagram. I chose to edit and put these images together, because to me they appear to confirm the belief that “only the sweetest of girls” wear Happi Snappi. Pastels, cupcakes, and young girls are traditionally found together. While working with the company’s owner, we talked about our audience being primarily younger mothers who knows their child is the sweetest and wants their appearance to match what’s on the inside. I used that specific font because it is relevant to a range of ages, younger mothers because the retro font is popular today, yet it may be nostalgic for older audiences. 

Moms are always looking for ways to accessorize their children, it’s what their mom’s and their grandmothers did before them. This advertisement places value on femininity and convenience as you can simply interchange the flowers on each headband or hair clip with a simple snap. It is meant to accentuate a person and boost self-esteem by making someone look nice with a flower in their hair. Advertising in our society has the influential power to guide people to make purchases on just about anything. It causes people to feel seen or heard as products they ask for comes straight to them in the form of a model wearing a product. We all want to feel important and be taken care of, so we mimic the edited people in magazines so that we become important by association.