Give and Take

The media and we human beings have a give and take relationship. We so confidently blame the media for the image it reflects, but we often fail to understand that the media is a reflection of not only our thoughts and biases, but our inner desires, and long withstanding traditions -customs. Douglas has written, “My friends and I were slaved to fashion, and slaved to mass media.” By controlling our inner temptations, we have become so accustomed to their methods of convincing  us what is in our best interest. A form of modern-day slavery, or are we just blinded by our inner consciousness and the media’s ability to read us in ways that we might not just be embarrassed but shocked. It is mainly irony that what we watch we accept it and in other forms we rebel against it. The media preys on our vulnerabilities of being of an opposite gender, or of a different race, or part of a certain faith.

During Super Bowl this year Coca-Cola was hurdled into a controversy over their advertisement: “The only thing more beautiful than this country are the people who live here.”: The Official Coca-Cola “Big Game” Commercial catch line was to “discover why #AmericaIsBeautiful.” Now from one stand point, people found it offensive that other countries were singing an American patriotic song instead of their own countries. On the other hand, I took it has immigrants embracing the fact that they have immigrated to the United States -America respects and accepts the multitude of languages and cultures that have made America what is it today. It all comes down to the “gaze” and how people will use their own mentalities and understandings to either negate or dictate a certain visual form of media.

Or on the other hand, the “GOT MILK” advertisement that was telling men to buy their girlfriends/wives milk, because it helps elevate the “bitch” form women take on when they are PMSing during that time of the month. In an article by the Huffington Post, it was reported that “The Board’s new ad campaign, conceived by creative agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners is entitled “Everything I Do Is Wrong.” It consists of several frightened-looking men holding cartons of milk as offerings for their better, angrier halves. Slogans include “I apologize for letting you misinterpret what I was saying,” “I apologize for not reading between the right lines,” “I’m sorry for the things–or things–I did or didn’t do,” “We can both blame myself” and “I’m sorry I listened to what you said and not what you meant.”” The stereotypes, the inside jokes about women being on their menstrual cycle have taken the form of the media, because “we” the people that have created this persona around this time of the month are the MEDIA.


Our culture is strongly linked with media and advertising. IF we are not willing to change our inside jokes, formation of cliques, the “that’s what she said” attitude, the media will continue to use our language to convince us to keep thinking in that narrow direction. Talking about “that’s what she said”, although always in a dirty context, this phrase is being vomited by people everywhere. Women aren’t defending themselves either. They are all in on cracking a few jokes too. Indirectly approving of such vulgar sexist language. 

Whether it’s stereotypes of Muslims, women, homosexuals, or others, advertisements and media are controlled by the public, they give us what we want to see, what pushes our buttons so they are highly successful in selling us their products. What’s sad, is that we continue to pass it by as “no big deal” or that was actually “funny”. Some things are plain wrong, and need to be never said, or done again. We continue to ask for more of the same, and we are consistently handed what we had asked for. Do these ads, really churn our stomach, or are going to pass-it-by.


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