Category Archives: Media

Living in a Post-Gutenberg era

Question: What impact did the Gutenberg press have on society?
Answer: A lot. A whole bunch of a lot.

When Gutenberg invented the press in the mid-1400s, it made information accessible to the masses.  The technology made sharing      uncensored ideas with your neighbors, the village down the road, or even the world, possible.

Before the Gutenberg press, only the rich could afford books and manuscripts. In fact, books were so rare that your church probably did NOT have a copy of the Bible under its roof.

According to a web article posted by the University of Texas, it’s estimated you could only find around 30,000 books in all of Europe before the Gutenberg press.  Fifty years later, 10 to 12 million books circulated throughout Europe.

Yeah, I’d say the Gutenberg press had an impact.

Watch the following Xerox ad that first aired during the 1976 Super Bowl. It humorously represents the communication opportunities before the Gutenberg press and after.

Continue reading Living in a Post-Gutenberg era

I’ll be there for you… when the media black is over

Remember the TV series Friends? Monica and Chandler, Joey and Phoebe and Ross and Rachel all getting into situations and then gathering at Central Perk to talk. We’ll here’s The Nerdist’s take on how Friends would look like if it were set in today’s time.

I wonder if they would use Instagram or Snap Chat to take pictures of the ugly naked guy who lived in the apartment across the street?
Continue reading I’ll be there for you… when the media black is over

Gaming – Pass me the controller

 Written by Terri Reddout

 Gaming.  What do I know about gaming?  Nothing. Nada. Ziltch.

games & cultureOkay, that’s not true.  I did a little research and now I know gaming is a $60 billion dollar a year industry.  It is so big, so incorporated into society that even the academic world takes it seriously.

Games and Culture: A Journal of Interactive Media has been in publication since January 2006.  Each journal asks psychologists, sociologists, communication specialists and more to share what they learned about gamers communicate, how they associate with each other and what they can accomplish working collaboratively.

In one issue they look at how propaganda is being used in EVE Online.  Another article looks at the differences of culture between American and Russian players.  Apparently, there’s a perception that Russians approach the game in a more criminal manner.  The study shows it’s just part of their culture.

Thanks to my work with the students at CentralNewsWatch, I’m also aware of the growth of ESports.  In fact, the NCAA is talking about considering make ESport gamers NCAA athletes.

What else do I know about gaming? Continue reading Gaming – Pass me the controller

You won’t need 3D glasses to see the impact of 3D printing

By Terri Reddout

I’ll admit it. The concept of 3D printing confused me. How on Earth does the printer that kicks out letters and photos possibly print something in 3D?

Turns out it’s easy. Once you get the right printer and the right type of “ink.”

cubex_angleWhen I first wrote this blog in 2015 you could but a pretty good 3D printer, like this CubeX, for your home for $999 – $2000. Sounds expensive. Especially if you’re only going to use it to print multicolored rocket ships.

old-microwave-ad1I reminded my readers that the first microwaves cost thousands of dollars. (One source said that would be like spending over $10000 in today’s dollars.)

Now, you can pick one up at the local mega mart for under $100.

And, as I predicted, the same has happened with 3D printers.  I just spotted this Flash Forge 3D printer on Amazon for $349 with free shipping!

 So how does a 3D printer work? Well, let’s ask a scientist.

Continue reading You won’t need 3D glasses to see the impact of 3D printing

The future of television? Is it in your face?

004_0002Some of the earliest pictures my parents took of me have a television in the background.

So, television has been around as long as I have.

Well, in truth, the mechanics of TV has been around a lot longer than I have.  I’m really a child of early television programming.

Philo sketch
Sketch drawn by Philo T. Farnsworth for his chemistry teacher in 1922. You can learn more about Farnsworth and his battles with RCA at http://philointhehall.com/

The TV mechanism was actually invented by an Utah boy named Philo T. Farnsworth.  He first sketched the idea of the vacuum tube in his high school chemistry class.  He went on to develop the first electric television set in the 1920s.

The Great Depression and World War II supply shortages stalled the spread of television.  The research continued but at a slower rate because materials and man-power were needed for the war effort.

Continue reading The future of television? Is it in your face?

A premature eulogy for the music business

I grew up in a house in the middle of a 10 acre cherry orchard.  My parents were around 17 when they gave birth to me.  So, when I turned 10, they were 27.  They were my parents, but they were young people too.

slumber party
That’s my sister in the center swinging her head to the Beatles. I’m the redhead to the right, behind my sister.

I tell you all this to explain why at all my slumber parties we were allowed to turn the stereo up to 10 and dance into the wee small hours in the morning.  At my 40th high school reunion, they were still talking about those slumber parties.

Like you, music has played an important role in my life.  I remember when we got the Beatles’ Hard Days Night album.  In high school every dance had a Credence Clearwater Revival cover band playing.  In college, I listened to Chicago, Peter Frampton and Boston.

When my son came along we couldn’t start the day without dancing to Heart of Rock-n-Roll by Hughie Lewis and the News, Every breath you take by The Police or Born in the USA by Bruce Springsteen. Continue reading A premature eulogy for the music business

Just because it’s on the Internet doesn’t mean it’s true

Written by Terri Reddout

Where were you on 9-11?

Chances are you were toddlers or younger.
I was in my Weber State University office working. My friend called and wanted to know if I started recording the news.  When I asked why she told me to get in front of a television set, now!  I did. That’s when I saw the replay of the second plane crashing into the second tower.

The next 36 hours were filled with my news students gathering stories and putting together a newscast focused on how the terrorist attack impacted the community and its people.

At the end of the day on 9-12, a student called me over to the computer and said, “Terri, you’ve got to look at this.”  Here’s what the email he opened looked like.

Screen shot 2015-03-04 at 1.08.36 AM

Continue reading Just because it’s on the Internet doesn’t mean it’s true

Love…and media… are all around us

One of my favorite movies is Love Actually. The movie begins with aging rocker, Billy Mack, bastardizing one of his former hits, Love is All Around Us to Christmas is All Around Us.  The idea was to capitalize on holiday sales. In truth, Love is All Around was originally recorded back in the 60s by The Troggs.

The song came to mind as I mulled around what to write for this blog. Love IS all around. But I contend an even more prevalent force surrounding us is media.

According to a report issued by the San Diego Supercomputer Center at USC each of us consume over 15.5 hours of media each day… outside of work. Wow! That’s a lot of media. We’ve developed into a multitasking society where we have a television show on, while using social media on our computers and sending text or Tweets on our smart phones. So, it is possible for a person to consume more than 24 hours of media within a 24 hour period.

Continue reading Love…and media… are all around us

First, let me take a sip of this refreshing Pepsi…

Written by Terri Reddout

Product Placement

Product placement is where a brand is incorporated into the scenery of a movie or television show.  And it’s big.  Really BIG.  In 2017, product placement represented $8.78 Billion in spending.

A little product placement history

One of the first product placements I remember is Reese’s Pieces in the movie E.T. The Extraterrestrial.

Yes, originally Spielberg wanted to use M&Ms, but Mars turned him down.  So, the producers went to Hershey’s and they gladly gave permission to use their little known candy.  The deal struck between Hershey’s and the movie producers involved a Hershey promise to spend $1,000,000 to promote the movie.  In exchange, Hershey’s could use E.T. in their ads.  After the movie’s premier, sales of Reece’s pieces increased by 65 percent.

When they re-released E.T. in 2002, Hershey’s struck a similar deal (as this commercial demonstrates.)

There are four types of product placement.

  • One is the deal like Reese’s pieces.
  • A second type involves the company providing the movie producers big ticket items such as cars, appliances, technology equipment for free.  Almost half of all product placement is based on this type of deal.
  • The third type is “straight fee.”  This is where the advertiser pays to have the product included in the film or television show.
  • The fourth type is “organic.” The product becomes part of the storyline without any goods, services or money being exchanged.  This can be a bit risky if the product is being used in a negative or derogatory manner. Continue reading First, let me take a sip of this refreshing Pepsi…

Power and Communication

Power influences our communication

It defines much of our communication and why we do what we do. There may be many reasons why you and I show up for this class each class period. Some of those reasons deal with power.

  • You are reading this blog because I said it is part of an assignment where you can earn points toward a final grade
  • You are taking this class because someone paid your tuition and they expect you to show up for class in exchange
  • I show up because, if I don’t, the university will dock pay from my check or they may even fire me

What are some other reasons why you show up for class that deal with power? Continue reading Power and Communication