Wednesday, July 20, 2011

my most memorable mediated experience

Obama adressing the nation (

Our source of information can affect how we perceive that information. A big event that affected me as well as many Americans was the killing of Osama bin Laden. Once the information was given to the mass media people found out about this event within seconds. Different types of media can affect how one experiences an event.

The information was released in the late evening. I happened to be on facebook and saw someone's status update to "Osaba bin Laden is dead!". My first reaction was that this can't be true. What do my friends on facebook know? Was I really going to trust information I received from a friend over the internet? An event like this was so shocking I couldn't believe it until I heard it from our president. I immediately turned on CNN anxiously awaiting president Obama to address the nation and assure us that this indeed was true. It was necessary for the President to be the one to break the news to America. It gave America the confidence to believe that the death of Osama bin Laden was now a fact.

To help the country truly understand this event, many of the news stations showed an animation of exactly how the American navy was able to capture and kill Osama. ( This enriched my mediated experience. It allowed me to visualize and really feel what was going on. The news also showed other peoples reactions to this event, which made me feel like I was sharing this experience with the rest of America. This shared experience is the perfect example of the ritual model of mass communication, which is explained in Mass Communication: Living in a Media World by Ralph Hanson. The ritual model states that the public consumes media messages so that they can feel like they are being a part of a shared experience that brings us together as a people.

Watching the news that night, I was under the impression that all of America was celebrating together, however there was a minority of people with different thoughts and beliefs on this event. Another name for a group who differentiates itself from the larger culture is called a subculture. Baron explains this term in his article called "What is Culture?" This subculture believed that Osama should have been locked up rather than killed.

How information is presented to someone, greatly affects his or her reaction to it. Some people who are media literate need to make sure their source of information is reliable before they can believe something. Other people who are not so media literate will just believe what their friends on facebook say. Where someone is, who they are with and what their source of information is can affect ones mediated experience.

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