This course is experimenting with Google Sites to do some dynamic interactive things with the class.

We may be back with WordPress in Spring 2011, but for now, questions about the class can be directed to:

Paul Mihailidis

Thanks, and have a great Fall Semester!


First, thanks much for the podcasts on Wednesday. Those were awesome, and it’s great to see such creativity in the projects. Much appreciate your hard work.

Okay, so next week is the last week of class (que the tissues)

Monday we’ll finish the Podcasts, then do a Media Literacy Art Project.

Wednesday – We’re going to do our Action Portion of Media Literacy, and evaluations.

I’m asking on wednesday that everyone bring one piece of paper, outlining how you think about media literacy. The paper should look back on how or if you ever thought of media literacy coming into the class…and what the term means to you know that we’ve gone through what we’ve gone through. This should be a statement of 1 page max.

Bring it in Wednesday, we’ll do evals, action, and then talk about the case study if needed. We’ll also hopefully be hearing a rap about the 5As of Media Literacy…

Then, of course, we’ll all share a good  cry together, and contemplate what life will be like with such a devastating event like the end of a class 🙂

Have a great weekend,

Great discussion Wednesday, which was never resolved really…ended on the question:


There was a divide between the “selfish gene” and the public good motivation. I’m not sure what model Wikipedia fits, but we do know: 1) there is no visible reward for posting, and 2) there is no way to ever know whether you literally made a difference. I don’t doubt the selfish gene is at play, but I do think it’s a weird, different, and new type of selfishness…one that may be better than ever.

Anyway, to be continued for sure.

WITHOUT FURTHER ADO, HERE IS THE PODCAST PRESENTATION ORDER (not listing topics, to build true suspense):

1. Christina Serednicki, Marissa Varade, Kerri Regan, Amanda Scaccianoce, Josh Krosnick

2. Megan Elder, Jon Hanford, Ellie Sharkey, Erica Moreland, Margrit Motola

3. Rory Mycek, Sean McDonnell, Lauren Schreck, Jilliam Decker

4. Sarah Radley, Matt Remis, Chris Mawson, Rich Illich, Shea Molloy, Janiece Holloway

5. Jeff Laurino, Nick Morgan, Andy Laslzo, Pat DeFrancisci, Leo Papadopoulos


Other updates:

1. Posted your final Case Study (due during the final block) under assignments

2. Monday, you’ll have the chance to upload final podcasts to Dropbox. Or, you’ll be shown how and then Wednesday we’ll start to hear your fantastic stories.

Have a great weekend.


ps: hopefully, as I promised before, we’ll have Twizzlers involved. Twizzlers are a top 5 candy, easily. I don’t think there is any debate on this.

Podcasting, etc.


Thanks for the great class on Wednesday. Our guest was more than impressed with all of you. She mentioned rarely seeing such great engagement around a subject in class. Make a teacher proud! Well done. I’ll bring twizzlers in to celebrate.

Anyway, next week we’re on to podcasting. Monday will be a podcasting workshop. Groups will formalize ideas, and be tutored on how to build the podcast, and what approach you will take with your stories. A few notes:

1. We can talk about which class to air our podcasts. We’re not set for 4/26 – 4/28, but those can go back a bit if needed. It all depends on how great they are going to be!

2. Your presentation of the podcast will simply be setting up the topic in the larger context of the media, why you chose it, etc. You will introduce, air the podcast, and then we will have a brief Q&A session afterwards. Remember you have 15 minutes for this.

3. Here is a site with podcast examples. Way longer than your but relevant to see how you want to tell your story (interview format? with bells and whistles? monologue serious? etc.)
On The Media Podcasts

4. Please let me know if you have any questions.


Lastly, a note on the lesson plan now case study.

I’m stripping back all the work around the case study so that you can concentrate on telling a detailed and in depth story of how a topic is being shaped by the media, and how that is influencing the public. Your case study should use texts from class, lots of media references, and include images, video, links, etc. to make your case study really engaging and relevant.

You need to start by introducing the topic in the context of the media issue, then explain the topic at length, and finally at the end put people into a media literacy framework. Why is this important? How does our thinking about this help understand it? etc. You should end with a reference to media litearcy (5As or not) and then pose a few questions around the topic.

Realistically the case study will be 5 or so pages with a bunch of references.

I’m writing this now in case you get a head start (ahahahahhahahhahahahahahhaha, that’s so funny).

Have a great weekend, see you Monday, and Don’t forget Chris’s “window”


It was interesting at the end of class to see the hands that went up wishing they never watched Food, Inc. I think we’ll have a solid discussion on this film in terms of media activism/appreciation Monday. It’s a tough film to watch indeed, I couldn’t handle some of the scenes, but I think in the same respect isn’t it needed? If we don’t have those stories told, how do we hold the folks who mass produce food at the cost of health accountable? With less regulation, as the film showed, we have no where else to turn. And markets only react when crisis occurs, aka the dead 2 year old.

In any case, I’m always struck by the power of such stories, and this is no exception. I’d love to hear your thoughts here if you want to share them. Specifically if this film changed the way you thought about food even this weekend.
Otherwise, here’s the weekly update:

1. REMIX assignment due in to me by 5pm tomorrow (Friday, 4/9). We’ll recap next week, and see what you thought of the task at hand.

2. Podcast Group Assignment is now posted (#4 under Assignments). On Monday, Phil our super-TA is going to give a demo on making a podcast, and we’ll get into groups for the project. I’ll pass out the assignment in class on Monday. It’s important you are there to get the assignment.

3. On Wednesday we’ll have a guest participating in our class, to learn about how we approach the 5A’s and Media Literacy. I’d like to ask that we make an effort to be in class on time and ready to yap about media literacy, to engage our guest around the great dynamic our class has. I appreciate your efforts, thanks.

4. The remaining part of the course will use Shirky’s text to explore appreciation and action, around Media Literacy. We’re due to utilize Shirky 3-5 next week. Please have this prepared particularly for Wednesday. Thanks.

5. And thanks to those who provided Lesson Plan topics. I’ve replied to you all, and we’ll be going over them in more detail in the upcoming courses.

With that, see you Monday, to finish Food, Inc and get into groups for your Podcast project.

Have a great weekend!


ps: I’ve also posted the slides on Tuned Out. We’re not done with that topic yet.
pps: Don’t forget about the genetically mutated Chicken…

So after class I was still thinking about that fundamental question:

What does it mean to be an informed citizen in the 21st Century?

I think that question may be the right one to ask. I think we can use the premise of the Tuned-Out book to think about whether we really are worse off in this new media environment, or whether we are indeed re-defining news and civic participation writ large. You know my ideas on this (you are more empowered than ever before), and so I think there is a shift that we can work to try and identify…

I think the best way to go about this (and I’d love to hear your ideas) is to have groups all answer this questions, and then another sub question. One’s I have so far:

1. How do we define News today?
2. What are the biggest influences of social media on under 40 people today?
3. Who is a journalist in the 21st Century?

4. What does it mean to be an informed citizen in the 21st Century?

Let me know your thoughts on this


I also thought about a great article I read this weekend about how much information and new media technologies are fundamentally changing the way we live (a paradigm shift unfolding). Here’s the article. If you feel inclined, read before Wednesday.

Texts Without Contexts, by Michiko Kakutani, New York Times, March 17, 2010


Driving home tonight, I was listening to NPR (nerd), and on On Point with Tom Ashbrook, I heard some of the most amazing dialog between citizens and scholars about the healthcare bill. I thought it was something we all should hear, because it gets to the heart of how much we know about this bill, and what it will do. There are so many people who have their own interpretations and perspectives about what the bill means, that it’s no wonder why we can’t really come up with a new way to understand citizenship. Even the scholars were talking about things I had no idea about. Too much information sometimes seems as dangerous as too little…

In any case, you can listen to the show by click here: ON POINT HEALTHCARE.(it’s our media literate duty to do so…)

And here’s the link Shea gave for the healthcare issue. It’s a pretty solid rundown. Again, we aren’t sure of the credibility. It’s classic online communication…

Wednesday, we’re going to try and come up with an outlining for making sense of things in the 21st Century (post on that to follow).

See you Wednesday,


Week’s update as follows:

1. Assessment slides are posted on the right. They cover Assessment, and then talk about what is news/who is a journalist

2. The REMIX ASSIGNMENT is also posted to the right, under assignments. Please remember that you can get this to me before or after Spring Break, but again don’t leave it until the last second, as it’s another assignment that takes some time.

3. LESSON PLAN TOPICS – By Friday, March 26th, I want an email of an in-depth description of what you want to explore for your final lesson plan assignment. We’ll go over this in more depth Monday. You can type a page in Word and attach the document, or just send an email. THIS SHOULD BE ON SOME DEPTH, SO I CAN GIVE GOOD FEEDBACK.

Next Week, we’re going to continue the Assessment discussion, with the aim to create and finalize a letter that we’ll title: Tuned-In: How American’s Under 40 are re-defining renews and empowering democracy. Please get the text ideas down…

And then of course there is:

  1. March Madness
  2. The pending Health Care Vote this weekend…
  3. TNL last Thursday

All things to discuss moving forward.

Have a great weekend.



Thanks so much for your attention to Control Room this past week. I think it’s an important film to watch, and really expands how much we understand issues we have little first hand exposure to. This is the first of a few screenings in the class. Up next is Food, Inc…..which is mind-blowing to me. That said:

1. I’ve posted a space for chat on Control Room. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the film, heading into next week. Please take a minute to head over and share your reactions to the film.

2. First Awareness Slides are posted to the right

3. Next week we are turning to TUNED OUT, so please prepare the first part of this text, as we’ll be using it in the class.

4. And finally, remember that Monday your forgotten worlds assignment is due in class. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Have a great weekend, see you on Monday


ps: If you can make Monday’s screening, that would be great. Here is the link to a description of the film: ONE WATER


For this week, quick reminders:

1. THE PROJECT IMPLICIT TEST & CHATTER IS FOR THIS WEEK. Please visit the link to the right “What is your Bias level?” and complete

2. Readings for this week are True Enough (4&5), and Overload (the CJR article), which is posted under content

3. I posted the first bunch of Awareness Slides, to the right under Class Slides

4. Tomorrow, we’ll continue with Bias, and start in on Control Room, the documentary.

5. FORGOTTEN WORLDS ASSIGNMENT – The assignment is posted to the right. Please have a look and be ready with questions for tomorrow. Here are some examples from students last semester. These students have generally agreed to share their work, please don’t replicate by any means:

Hershowitz – Chicago killings

Peone – Female Genital Mutilation
DelGatto Conflict in the Congo

I’ll bring some copies to class for you to see tomorrow as well.

As always, let me know if you have any questions, and have fun watcing the Oscars (if you don’t have Cablevision!!!!)