Media and war (ISIS)

The development of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) over the last few years has been helped by the way the organization has increasingly used social media to spread its messages of terror and to recruit new members. ISIS uses different social media platforms to radicalize and recruit young, socially apathetic Muslim youths to this particular organization. The online propaganda campaign that is being used by ISIS has become a serious problem worldwide and specially for a number of western countries because many young people have travelled to Syria and Iraq to join the group as a result of watching the organization’s online propaganda. Indeed, Sheffield comments that ISIS has been using “tools like social media, product placement and targeting advertising” to attract new recruits and to spread its propaganda using the new media of the internet. This problem therefore needs to be mitigated by an effective response by the United States government to counter the effects of ISIS’s online propaganda. ISIS has become adept at using a variety of online techniques to develop its image and the scale of the problem which faces the United States can be illustrated by Jen Psaki a spokesperson for the U.S. State Department. It has been estimated that ISIS sends around 90,000 tweets a day on the Twitter social media network which shows the volume of messages that are issued by ISIS. In addition to the use of Twitter to spread its propaganda ISIS has produced a number of high definition movies that contain the torture or execution of hostages which have been distributed online via sites like YouTube. The organization also uses product placement and targeted advertising towards teenagers which help ISIS “expand its brand among jihadis outside of the Middle East” because the internet enables ISIS to operate globally and to communicate with its supporters regardless of their location. Therefore, an effective response to ISIS propaganda has to be implemented by the United States and its allies in order to prevent the spread of more extreme jihadist propaganda in the future. The United States must work together with social media providers to prevent ISIS from using these platforms to spread their messages of hate and violence against the west. This problem must be directly addressed by the social media companies such as Facebook and Twitter however a further problem exists because of the nature of the online supporters of ISIS. Indeed, according to Kingsley the unofficial supporters of ISIS “boost its brand by retweeting its hashtags and translating its Arabic members’ messages for potential sympathizers in the west” which also needs to be stopped. In conclusion, ISIS has managed to create an online presence across various social media platforms which it uses to disseminate its propaganda around the world using the internet. This problem must be addressed by the United States and the rest of the arab world in conjunction with social media companies to prevent the organization from spreading its messages of violence and hatred and ruining the reputation of islam by not presenting the reality of this religion . An effective response to this kind of propaganda could involve increased monitoring of the internet by government agencies such as the National Security Agency (NSA) in conjunction with social media platforms to remove jihadist propaganda when it is uploaded. This could be used to prevent the spread of ISIS propaganda such as torture and execution videos as well as content which depicts an image of a utopian paradise that appeals to young Muslims worldwide.

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Media and War

Embedded journalism is a media practice, where a journalist stays with a unit of the armed forces during times of war to report directly about the fighting. Embedding came into existence after a request from United States journalists. During the Gulf conflict, reporters reported from the rear in nearby towns such as Dhahran or Riyadh. Lucky reporters, such as Molly Moore, who managed to embed with the United States units, produced excellent reports. However, there were delays in most of the reports while some were carelessly assessed by the military. Proponents of embedding have argued that the key aim of embedding is to provide protection. Reporters from reputed media houses all over the world are embedded when they visit volatile areas. Reporters who visit such areas without protection risk losing their lives. Van Klaveren, BBC’s head of new gathering, notes that due to terrorism activities in the Middle East, journalists are a target. In addition, journalists can gather first hand information on the battlefield apart from other life experiences. Ignatius agrees that he has been able to interact with the military up-close. Furthermore, he has been able to visit majority of regions such Iraq and Afghanistan to which readers have benefited immensely. On the other hand, opponents of embedding have been quick to point out its flaws. Firstly, embedding is prone to manipulation by the parties involved. The military may use it as a propaganda tool to further their interests during the war. While the media, on the other hand, has to uphold ethics by telling both sides of a story. For example, Kerry Sanders from NBC News, after covering a bloody aftermath is informed of a disturbing call. The airing of the embarrassing story outraged the Marines superiors because of the high number of casualties involved. Secondly, even though security is assured, journalists do suffer victims at times. For example, NBC News lost Jeremy Little when their convoy was attacked near Fallujah. Since the war started in Iraq, Fourteen journalists have been killed. Brokaw notes, “War is not about technology…it is about life and death” . Principally, the tagging along of a reporter to an army gives a wrong impression. The fact that countries like Iraq and Afghanistan, have been at war for the last thirty years does not mean that the conflict can be resolved through war. Embedding remains a very controversial practice, and journalists must uphold their professional ethics. When reporters embed, they produce biased and personalized stories. This is equivalent to censorship. This is because most of the stories are tailored towards the troop’s war expertise. Journalists need to improve their transparency when embedding. By doing so, they inform the troops and the public at large on the limits on how far they can go. This in turn reduces viewers’ mistrust and urge to seek other sources of information. In addition, it will also increase military responsibility. Media houses, need to moderate programs that are biased and impartial by encouraging unregulated views. Lastly, fixed delivering of war stories is inadequate. As noted partial embedding is also possible in attaining unbiased information. Reporters can explore villages or areas that are safe to get the other side of a story. The stories need to be complemented by other news coverage access thereby, providing a different perspective. This moderates the one sided view of embedded journalism. Editors and producers can ensure that information gathered is blended into an edible report.

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Media and War “Cold War”

The story ‘How pop culture helped win the Cold War’ talks about how pop music was used to support the United States. This soft power was vital to waging the cold war, cultural imperialism and superiority over the enemy. The story of the ‘Modern art was a CIA ‘weapon’, which informs us that the CIA used artists such as de Kooning and Pollock to wage a cultural war against the East during the Cold War. It used secret funds to support the pop musicians. The economic factors that led to the end of the cold war include the change in the global economic system. Several factors contributed to the triumph of capitalism over communism. Media was a lethal weapon in the propaganda war and projecting the Western values and lifestyle as superior. The West was projected as a developed region than the East, with a very classy living. As a result, the global public opinion was more attracted to the western culture than to the Eastern ideology. Additionally, the pop culture was more appealing to the young people, thus the spread of the American values via music .The cold war was a duel that was complicated, which saw the main actors employ the use of soft and hard powers. However, it is believed the former proved to be decisive in determining who won the cold war. The country that had the strongest soft power triumphed in the end. The pop music represented the American values, the message that it passed across was purely anchored in the life experiences in the United States. The CIA was a crucial entity in collecting intelligence, and it covertly used the media to infiltrate various areas and harness vital information that was needed to tackle socialism and communism. It sponsored the artists, expositions, and publication of magazines and articles abroad as one way of selling the American values and understanding the reaction of the population to socialism and communism relative to capitalism .I agree that the pop music and modern art were used as an illustration of how free the western world was in comparison to the Soviet art and music. The society was becoming freer as it advanced, and hence the demand for more individual freedoms and rights. The pop music culture stirred changes in the way the society perceived life, their expectations, and values. The triumph of the United States in the propaganda war coincided with the advancements in communication technology, which made it easier to spread the American artwork to the rest of the world. However, the CIA had to inject a lot of funds into the propaganda war to get a significant hold on the leadership in the art industry, which was to be exploited via media outlets. However, it is essential to note that the media-supported propaganda was more successful because the United States enjoyed the use of a popular language than the Soviets. This is because the English language was widely used in Europe and most of the third world countries. Moreover, the United States was endowed with more economic and human resources that were necessary to advance and win media propaganda. The American pop music, magazines, and soap operas dominated the world’s modern arts, which was engineered by the CIA to show the freedom and advanced lifestyles experienced in the United States. Communism and socialism were depicted negatively in the artistic works, thus playing down on the values of the East. Therefore, the media was a reliable soft power that was used by the United States to shame and bring down communism .


 

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Yellow Journalism

            “Yellow Journalism” denotes media’s use of lurid features such as captivating pictures, headlines, imaginary drawings and sensationalized news in the publication of newspapers to capture the readers’ attention and interest so as to increase paper circulation. However, this “traditional” and historical sense of the term has significantly changed as the tactics of yellow journalism get deployed in other forms of new media such as the internet, television and radio. Typical characteristics of yellow journalism include the presentation of little researched or falsified information, which is often filled with exaggerations, sensationalism or scandal-mongering. Particularly, content presented in yellow journalism also lacks reliable reference sources or at times falsified sources. The term ‘yellow journalism’ was created to describe the employment of the highlighted tactics in a furious competition in the mid-1890s between major New York City news houses producing the New York World and the New York Journal. The beginning of yellow journalism can be historically found back to Joseph Pulitzer’s New York World, which had successfully attained the largest newspaper circulation through the use of sensational reporting and battling against social corruptions (Great Projects Film Company, 1999). In order to enter and dominate the market, William, R. Hearst, who had bought the rival newspaper house in 1895, employed the same strategies. The two houses reached the choice of their opposition in the reporting of some of the major world events that included the Cuban revolutionary uprising and the Spanish-American war (Krauss, 1998). The two media houses are clearly remembered for enflaming the American public into a frenzy characterized by passion for revenge against the Spaniards, especially with the sinking of the Maine battleship in Havana (Great Projects Film Company, 1999; Krauss, 1998). Interestingly, yellow journalism somehow worked for both media houses by increasing their paper circulation and fame, but they later came under sharp analysis for lack of journalistic standards. Lack of journalistic standards characteristic of the early periods in which yellow journalism developed is still clear in today’s society to changing amounts across the globe. Some societies or nations such as those in the first world may have raised their journalistic standards to a higher level of honesty and diligence, but some regions such as the developing and underdeveloped regions of the world still experience significant yellow journalism. The varying extent of this phenomenon in journalism is also evident in varying standards across different media platforms. It is evidently agreeable that there is more ‘yellow journalism’ on the internet-based media platforms than on other media platforms such as newspapers or television. This can be attributed to the fact that the internet lacks clear-cut regulations and virtually anyone can put up content without much regard on truthfulness. An example of this the recently popularized, untrue story on the Samsung and Apple court case in which it was claimed that Samsung had paid $1.2 billion dollars in form of nickels to Apple. Apparently, this untrue story that started off as a sarcastic piece on the internet, but found its way into other forms of media.   While yellow journalism may not be very widespread nowadays, there is no doubt that the use of techniques that characterize this form of journalism is evident everywhere. Techniques from the ‘yellow journalism,’ era of mid 1890s have become permanent and widely used. The widely used techniques include the use of colored comics, banner headlines and copious illustration, which are mainly evident on the Internet and television. Yellow journalism’ still lives on, but in slighter forms because its characteristics have proven indispensable to media houses.

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Abraham Lincoln and the press

The dirty game we witness today between the press and politics did not start yesterday. According to “Farhi”, it already existed in the pre- civil war of 1860s in American. Politicians of that time such as Abraham Lincoln already knew the impact media could have on their political career which is a language even better understood in the current political arena. The players of this field used press for all the good and bad reasons. This relationship between media and politics dating back in the 19th century has not changed. Even though several changes have been initiated in the profession of journalism, the more they remain the same. Media is a powerful channel for communication. Traditionally, information was transmitted through print media. However, the growing technological advancement has seen the introduction of electronic media that may take the form of televisions, radios and e-mails among others. The consequence of this is lots of information coming from different sources and parts of the world streaming in every second (Wills). Not all information in the media is accurate. Any part or all of it can be distorted to meet individual’s interest. Thus, lacks reliability, especially the print media such as newspapers. In order to achieve his political agenda, Abraham Lincoln developed various strategies to influence the voters through the media. He would use the press to garner support for himself, campaign for his friends and at the same time campaign against his opponents. As an astute, creative and innovative politician, he would further his policies and determine what to be written about him. Some of the strategies he adopted include infiltrating, financing, and co-owning the media. Through infiltration, he wrote anonymous articles working in his favor and against the rivals due his quest for leadership. He continued to be a ghostwriter and in some cases used proxies even during his presidency. As observed by Hiatt , these actions were not only dangerous to the editors and reporters but also to him since they could face legal actions or rather they would be beaten by the offenders. However, the loyal newspaper owners, editors and reporters would be rewarded by state appointments in return of the favor. Having understood the power of the press to make or break a person, on some occasions he had to repress them. Though he acted with a hidden hand, he would restrict other liberties when he felt media was a threat to his course of action such as reporting defeat in war. He meticulously played this game by relaxing repression when elections were approaching. In addition, he would later snub the media while in office by using mass communication to communicate ‘matters of public interest.’ With his skills, Abraham Lincoln succeeded in the murky waters of politics and media. He balanced the needs of politics and press and knew very well when either was necessary. From my view, the press is currently even more pressing in all aspects of our lives. Except for the few developments in journalism practice such as following to professional standards and improved information broadcasting, media is still manipulated the same way as it was in the 19th century. Since politicians need media coverage, they have to develop a good relationship with the media owners, editors and reporters of the major media owners. Some have gone even to the extent of having the chief editors in their payrolls and rewarding the loyalties with government jobs if they win the elections. Also much of the problems in the media industry in the past such as biased reporting, lawsuits for inappropriate reporting, and low wages have not changed in the current practice. However, upholding ethical standards of practice will displace the corruptions such as prejudice and corruption that badly affect this industry.

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Turkish soap opera blamed for UAE divorces

Divorce is a great issue that Middle Eastern are dealing with from different aspects. One of the most ridiculous reasons of divorce is due to watching Turkish series. I totally agree that the increase of percentage in divorce rate is due to the lack of proper education and ignorance in marriage life. I would suspect that in most cases the women is the one who asks for a divorce. I also agree that most divorced couples by such reason are elder couples. Young couples are supposed to be well educated and have a wide vision of how should a marriage life be. Ware else elder couples and especially women, are not educated as much as the young couples. This is due to our strict culture in the elder generations which some families didn’t allow there girls to finish school, but to be housewives instead. The reason of the divorce is due to need of attention from the husband, which is another problem that we have in the marriage life of men. Those Turkish episodes presented to the audience dramatic scenes of how couples live together, showing care and understating between each other. Those series could reach up to one hundred and twenty episode which gives married couples an entire vision of the dramatic romance that non Arab people live. Talking in a religious perspective, those Turkish series break many of the Islamic rules and forbid married couple to do such actions. For e.g. some couples betray their wives or husbands by having other relations from the outside. Another e.g. is drinking alcohol in some episodes to reduce stress or a problem that happened between the couple. Having a divorce by such reason indicates weakness in the religious education and lack of adherence to culture and tradition. However we cannot blame the Turkish series for the increase of divorce rates in the Arab countries. The reason is, because there have not been any huge problems in Turkey due to dramatic series. Also Turkish people have no idea that Turkish episodes had made such chaos in the Arabian society, and of course it was not their aim to do such thing, but to have money and fame. The ones who should be blamed are we. As an Arabian society, we have accepted the fact to introduce the Turkish series to our world, so we have to be responsible for our people, and face different reactions whether negative or positive they are. The point of introducing the Turkish series is to see, learn, and understand the way of how different cultures people live in. Also it could be seen for entertainment and enjoyment. The problem is when people with weak mentalities and lack of education get affected by those episodes, and have the chance to express what they feel in their heat, it is sadly they do it the wrong way which finally leads to a divorce and destroy an entire family.

http://www.emirates247.com/news/emirates/turkish-soap-opera-blamed-for-uae-divorces-2012-04-04-1.452235

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Does globalization mean we will become one culture?

Starbucks is one the best coffee shops due to my opinion, and millions of people. Yes, it could be considered as “cheap coffee”, but it attracted people smartly by the special coffees that are offered. Also they managed to have a branch nearly everywhere in the world, which shows progress. As mentioned in the article, many other brands managed to spread widely in huge range making success. However, the understanding of different cultures and the entanglement between cultures by globalization does not mean that the world is having one strong culture. Each part of world has an extreme and strict culture that does not accept it to be ruined or mixed with cultures from the outside. We are different by names and tribes that differentiate people and give each person his own identity. Each tribe has its own ways of living and personal environment of raising up there children under a specific cultural rule. Money also differentiates people, because it is a source of power, so it is very difficult to change a mentality or cultural views of a person who owns power in this world. It is reality that we are being globalized, but this is a personal choice. For e.g., I can choose to be strict with my culture, or I can be Americanized or Parisian. An example of a country that is not globalized is North Korea. They choose to be separated from the world and to live under their own culture. Tourism makes people look into the outer world, but still does not change the mentality of people who lived on a certain culture and tradition. Globalization is opening the human brain to learn how other people live and think. You cannot compare humanity with animals such as chimpanzees, hyenas or dogs. Animals are completely different as in creatures and in the ways of living. Animals are adapted on certain grounds that god made them adapt in, and built there body to mange certain temperatures, food, greens, underwater, etc.  A human being is made to think and improve. The human race is built on these cultures and different identities that live in this world differently. That is how people speak different languages, eat different food and have their own beliefs. In a political perspective, if people were to be as one culture due to globalization, we would see that peace will spread on this world. However this is not the case, because wars for example are just growing bigger and we are expecting another world war. This world combines us together creating love and hope between cultures and traditions. I think globalization is a method of fighting people and accepting such fact. If people wanted safety they can make this world safe. If greed was killing the human’s desire, then this world will be destroyed by humans.

http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20120522-one-world-order/all

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Dozens executed in North Korea ‘for watching foreign films’

The ruthless, treatment and law of North Korea lead to death of many people due to ignorance of humanity. North Korea is a prison for twenty five million people, were they have extremely no idea about the world from the outside. Due to the extremely strict law, the JoongAng Ilbo newspaper reported the execution of 80 people, just because of watching South Korean movies. This is an extreme inhuman situation and cruelty that the rest of world should help those prisoners to come and see the real life. They forced thousands of people including children to watch such thing, which implants fear in the human heart and children. It is not the children’s fault to be born under an insane government and be treated as animals. Moreover, the ways and techniques that are used to kill those innocent people are unjustifiable to the extent you can’t even recognize the corpses. Shooting is not a way to kill poor people just because they watched a movie or possess a bible. How can those people live by knowing they have killed innocent pure heart people that they have never cause any serious problems for the country or its population? What will the children feel like seeing their parents or family members killed in front of their eyes? And what is harsher is that the relevant of the victims are thrown to prison, but why? Killing them I think will be much better for keeping them in prison but not doing anything wrong. This is not the way how to treat people to walk on a certain path and not to break any rule. A human is created with mistakes, no one has been created perfect, and no one is a prophet of god or an angel. A human is created with a brain to understand the law, but not to be forced and executed in order to receive a certain massage. The soul of a human is the most expensive gift that god gives a person. This is why a person always wants to be safe and do the right thing and be thankful to live, because he knows that if his soul is gone, then he will not have another chance. God is what created a human, and he is merciful and forgiving, but why not you? A human is a weak creature but it is never noticed by each single. Kim is the first person that should be executed due to his greed and unforgiving. Yes he could be powerful now, but no human will survive for ever. It is not that he decided to be powerful, but this was his chance in life. I think he lost his chance by the murder of innocent people and keeping them alive in a dead ground.

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/northkorea/10442375/Dozens-executed-in-North-Korea-for-watching-foreign-films.html

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The Champs-Élysées, a Mall of America

Paris, the city of lovers has been a main destination for tourists. The Champs Elysee Street is known to be the most beautiful avenue in the world, but sadly it has been destroyed by American globalization. I really think that the Champs Elysee should be a luxury street with higher prestige of coffee shops and boutiques, because such fast food restaurants like MacDonald’s and normal standard shops like Addidas and Nike, attract a lower stage of people which ruins the beauty of this street. Historically, the Champs Elysee was the street were rich Parisians use to visit, or even live by. In these days, Parisians would deny the fact to visit the Champs Elysee as it has been destroyed by the amount of tourist that visit. One of the main problems that you could face in the Champs Elysee is the bad treatment and service in coffee shops. The coffee shops aim to have money and don’t care about the comfort of the customer. They also give costumers fake bills and prices if they think a customer is rich and would pay straight away. If the customer noticed that something was wrong, they apologies by saying “sorry it’s the wrong check”. Moreover, because the low standard people can be seen in the Champs Elysee, such as the people from the suburbs and gypsies, the Champs Elysee has turned to be an unsafe street. There have been much robbery and stealing, due to the increase of rich tourists such as Arabs, Russians and Chinese. The Champs Elysee have turned to be a place that cares about business and gets what a tourist needs. The government has forgotten about the French culture and transformed one of the main destinations world wide to a low standard, and cheap market just because of tourists and money. The Parisians are mad in such transformation which has taken place. I think they totally have the right to protect their own culture and develop what they think will benefit the culture of France. France is very well known with its luxurious brand shops and quality food which are way better than American shops, and healthier type of food. Yes it have been mentioned in the article that Avenue Montaigne is the luxury street by Champs Elysee, yet it does not have the shape, size, and charm of the Champs Elysee. If those shops and restaurants were placed in Champs Elysee, a much higher standard people will be visiting, and they will even pay in a marketing perspective. The government should also find a way to get rid of the gypsies that annoy the people and damage the image of this beautiful street. The government and the municipal should put more effort in keeping a good eye on safety and tourist rights.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/15/world/europe/americas-mass-market-invasion-of-the-champs-elysees.html?pagewanted=2&_r=3&smid=tw-share

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CASE STUDY 3: THE HORROR GENRE

 

Horror movies have become a much more attractive type of movies than it was before. This indicates that the improvement of technology and the ability of attracting people through horror have improved. Pictures in horror movies have affected many people differently, both in bad and good ways. Seeing a picture of horror have affected young children, which have lead to certain diseases such as mental, and psychological. The control of human being over a child’s way of thinking and imagining such creepy unreal creatures is very weak in this case. A child can live in fear through his imagination, which could lead a child to a serious health illness that he will suffer from during his whole life. Moreover, this situation could be greater when it comes to religious beliefs. Some religions believe in the existing of devil or demon. In this case, when a child watches a movie that has an extreme well done image of a demon, this could damage the life of a young child. Also, another reason how horror movies could affect the young aged children, is by the different genres that have been explored. The improvement of exploring horror genres have made and increasingly well production of the horror movies. Getting to know the new genres could help in improving the media producers and make an amazing show to attract audience. However some of those productions have not made full success, but it still transplant in the human brain the genres that are linked to horror. These links are the cause of the increasing bad visions and imaginations of the young children. Also, when a child thinks a lot, especially before sleeping, it is well known that usually a dream comes on what comes last in a human’s brain. In that case children will have problems during nights and sleep, and will always be in fear. As we can see worldwide, the least preferred movies worldwide are horror movies. The reason for this is that no one would like to have pressured nerves, or high pressure. Some people cannot watch blood, because it makes them feel sick. So many people do not even try to think about any genres that could link them to fear as it could really harm their own health. What could be seen as a positive affect from those genres is how you could deal with those people who have problems in real life with demons and devil. It is a good thing to know the reason why a person is not having a comfortable life, and those genres could help you to get the key which makes a person get rid of his complex, full of horror life. Other people treat devil with exorcism, before reaching the main harsh genre of horror which is death.

 http://cw.routledge.com/textbooks/9780415448239/downloads/horror.pdf

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