Author Archives: caylahmorrow1
One example of how the media has spread stereotypes about gender, age, race, religion, culture, or economic class would easily be the 2016 Presidential Election. At a Trump Rally in Louisiana, there a black female minor who had been present. Trump had asked that she leave, and shortly after many people began to push and shove her out of the rally. There were videos all over social media and news channels. Many videos on Facebook showed only parts of what had happened at this event, and did not provide ALL information necessary to communicate to the public.
Another example was roughly 4-5 years ago, when there was an incident between a black minor (17 years old) named Trayvon who was walking to the corner store with a gray hoodie on. He walked in and grabbed skittles, Brisk, and Arizona. George Zimmerman was a man who was watching this minor very closely. There had been a robbery around the same time that was nearby, and when he was walking home, George tried to question him. He called the Police and the Police told him to leave the minor alone, but he did not listen and things ended up going down from there. George Zimmerman tried to fight him, but after Trayvon started to run away, George shot him.
There were many news channels discussing this incident. Some showed photos of Zimmerman with his prison jumpsuit on as well as photos of Trayvon from during school and with his family. This made George look like a bad person and Trayvon look like a typical well-rounded student athlete.
On other news channels, there were photos of the minor smoking marijuana and a photo with him carrying a gun, while then there were photos of George with his family. These news channels seemed to be very biased, choosing to use photos that represent these two individuals in ways where people can judge them. By using photos of Trayvon smoking and holding a gun, I feel like they were stereotypically trying to make him look like a typical black male who was very troubled, although that may not have been the case. These stereotypes were both positive and negative.
One final example would be affiliated to young singer Chris Brown. Chris Brown had been dating Rihanna years ago, and they were known as one of the cutest couples, up until he did something he could never take back; abusing her. There were many different understandings of what had happened. Some said she said something that put him over the edge, others say he found out she was being disloyal to him. Regardless of it all, the fact was that he put his hands on a woman and it was wrong. Many people disagreed on his punishment. Chris Brown had been sent to Prison, but not for very long. The public had been very upset, especially females around the world; however the system did not do much about it.
In the 21st century, music stars have become famous through social media, whether it’s through MySpace, YouTube, Instagram, etc. Here, artists have the ability to create their own image of who they are and see themselves as. MySpace, for example, allows “people to set up a personal profile on which they can post original music” (Chapter 6: Music). One can become a successful artist by getting likes/comments, or in broader terms, attention from the public. Justin Bieber is a perfect example of an artist who became famous through social media. When he was young, he had multiple videos on YouTube of him singing and playing instruments. All it took for the public’s approval, or the right person to see it. He becam famous when a talent manager discovered him. He quickly became “the first artist to have 7 songs from a debut record chart on the Billboard Hot 100,” (Justin Bieber).
I believe Justin Bieber became popular through his talent and public image. He was a young, attractive teenage boy with a great voice. It was only a matter of time before someone who could help him discovered him and assisted him in forming his image. Once Justin grew older and discovered more of who he really was and wanted to stand for, he began to establish his own style. This caused him to become even more famous. His music is great, but his image is almost “better”. Even after drama went completely South with ex-girlfriend, Select Gomez, and Justin threatened to make his Instagram private, he upset many fans and followers. My point in this is to show how fans are so consumed in the public image a celebrity or artist has that they are almost more focused on that than the very reason they are famous in the first place. People have become obsessed with the physical image an artist has, which influences people, both positively and negatively.
Artists, such as Justin Bieber, can positively influence people by encouraging them to follow their dreams and to never give up. When Justin first became widely known, it took him a few years to really become a notable artist whim attracted more than just teenage girls. Artists can negatively influence people as well through the ways they choose to live their lives. Artists who even do simple things like curse on a regular basis or drink/party all the time can push younger generations to do those things in order to feel acceptance in society. Regardless, artists have a major impact on the culture of our society, whether they realize that or not.