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The Final Chapter of BCM310!

Finally, the final posting for BCM310, this also means the end of BCM310 classes. I had learned a lot from BCM310 classes. There are new issues being brought up in the class every week and the issues are new to me like pinkwashing, e-waste, walled-gardened and so on. I am not aware of all these issues although I am involved in it. Although it is kind of annoying for me to blog about the issues discuss in BCM310 classes every week, but this had also benefits me a lot. The need to blog had made me to do research on the every week issues and with this, I learn more and in-depth information about a specific issue.

Besides, I learned to view issues from different perspective and not just the surface. For example, I never knew that there are issues behind buying pink product and support breast cancer. From BCM310 class, I learn to view the pink ribbon from different perspective like from the company’s perspective, breast cancer organization’s perspective and so on. Company may view breast cancer and pink ribbon as a way to generate more income instead of wanted to help out. So, now I will think twice before I buy any pink product and this is the same goes to other causes related product.

Then, e-waste has left a deep impression on me. Everyone is chasing for the latest technology and had causes people in other country like China, Congo are suffering. For example, people in Congo are living in the environment that is polluted by all the open burning of electronic device. Besides, the chemical has polluted the soil and water and all this chemical will be absorb by their food and all the chemical will be end up in the human body when they consume it. We are risking other people’s health when we didn’t treat our electronic waste properly and I never realize this issue before I expose to it in the BCM310 class.

Other than that, I also learn about a lot of things like pay wall, walled garden and realize that our conversation online is being moderated and so on. Besides, I never realize that the citizen journalist is threatening the traditional journalist. Recently, I heard a news that the Chicago Sun had fired all its professional photographers and has started training reporters on iPhone photography basics and they are going to use the freelance photographers and reporters.  It had shocked me and I think the internet and citizen journalism had caused the traditional media to not doing well and changed their way to manage the business.

Lastly, I would like to thank my lecturer, Miss Rohayu for making every weeks lecture interesting and we had a lot of fun being in the class and thanks for patiently guiding us throughout the semester and giving us feedback and advice on our blog posting every week. Miss Rohayu, thanks a lot and we do appreciate your hard work to teach us and I am sure all of us will definitely miss you a lot! =)

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E-waste! Do you aware of it?

“By 2007, between twenty and fifty million tons of electronic and electric waste (e-waste) were being generated annually, much of it via discarded cell phones, televisions and computers” (Maxwell & Miller 2012)

People never think of what will happen when they abandon their electronic devices and the consequence when they abandon their electronic devices. This is what happens to the abandon electric devices.

Most of the e-waste are produces in the Global North (Australasia, Western Europe, Japan, and the United State) and dumped in the Global South (Latin America, Africa, Eastern Sates) (Maxwell & Miller 2012). Vos (2012) mentioned that due to increased safety rules in Western countries, it is 10 times cheaper to export e-waste to developing contries than it is to locally recycle. Therefore the Western countries had export their e-waste legally and illegally to the developing countries. Illegal exporting of e-waste stand a large amount of it.

E-waste is harmful to human health and the environment. Most of the e-waste is being treated by open air burning and acid baths to recover valuable materials from electnic components. This make the worker to direct expose to the harmful substances. These practices can expose workers to high levels of contaminants such as lead, mercury , cadmium and arsenic, which can lead to irreversible health effects, including cancers, miscarriages, neurological damage and diminished IQs (EPA 2013). These practices also damaged the environment of the country as the harmful substances are release into the air, soil and water. Vos (2012) mentioned that most of the workers at e-waste sites are usually migrants from extremely poor areas and are often children. This means that the children is the one that get affected the most by the e-waste and imagine that children walking in the middle of all the e-waste and surrounded by the smoke that generate due to the open burning air. What have we done to those children while we are enjoying our latest technology and abandon the old one.

Therefore, we have to do something to save the children, the people in the e-waste dump country as well as our earth. We should have recycle the electronic device instead of throw it away. There are some organization and company that are collect the old electronic device. For example, “Dell Asia Pacific started its computer recycling intiative in Penang in October 2002, 170 tonnes of 15000 units of computers and computer related equipment have been collected for recycling include desktops, notebooks, keyboards, printers, mouse, scanners and other related peripherals” (Wong 2006). But then, this is still not enough to encourage more people to recycle eletronic product. Company and organizations should have give rebates for the customers who recycle their elctronic product to encourage more people to recycle their product.

Therefore, next time think twice before you want to dump your electronic device.

 

Reference

EPA 2013, ‘What is E-Waste?’, United States Environmatal Protection Agency, viewed 6 June 2013, retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/international/toxics/ewaste/index-uew.html#ewastetabs

Maxwell, R & Miller, T 2012, ‘Introcduction in Greening the Media Oxford University Press’, pp.1-20, viewed 6 June 2013.

Vos, S 2012, ‘Electronic Waste Disposal’, Nicholas School of the Environment,15 November 2012, viewed 6 June 2013, retrieved from http://sites.nicholas.duke.edu/loribennear/2012/11/15/electronic-waste-disposal/

Wong, LZ 2006, ‘Recycle your computer’, The Star, 1 August 2006, viewed from 6 June 2013, retrieved from http://thestar.com.my/lifestyle/story.asp?file=/2006/8/1/lifefocus/14793678&sec=lifefocus

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Moderating the conversation online

The participation on online conversation in this new era is very common globally. People can express their opinion through forum and comments on particular article, status, picture and so on. The common examples of online conversation are comments on Facebook, comments on the news article and conversation on Forum.

All of this online conversation needs to be moderate especially for comments or conversation on the traditional media sites like online news site and online broadcast sites. It is because one bad comments might affect the company’s reputation or create negative news towards the company. ABC online broadcaster (2008 cited in Martin 2012) stated that “The ABC cannot afford even one bad incident. The damage to our reputation and to community trust would be too great. Our funding may be threatened, and we may be subjected to greater regulation”.

Pritchard (2012) from The Observer said that “the number of comments posted below stories on our website has ballooned by an extraordinary two-third this year and is currently running at 500,000 a month – a huge increase in participation from you, the audience in our journalism”.  With the advance of technology, people can easily go online with their smart phone at anywhere and anytime, therefore with this, people can participate on the online conversation easily. This made the moderators’ job become difficult. The moderators work as moderating the conversation and comments on the site. Jonathan Landman, deputy managing editor for digital journalism at the New York Times says that “the team of four part-timers who were helping to moderate comments has already grown to 11, and he expects The Times to hire more people and train others to help out as comments expand onto other stories”(Glaser 2008). With the growth of the number of comments, the increase of the number of moderator can help The Times to moderate the comments on its site more effectively.

 Pritchard (2012) mentioned “that growth of the participants or audience to comments carries with it the risk that insults and abuse will correspondingly be on the rise.” Therefore, the moderators need to moderate the comments carefully to minimize the risk. “All comments must be approved by humans before being posted on the site” (Glaser 2008). Other then minimize the risks, it help to avoid all the negative comments that may affect the company in a negative way.

“I think quality is more important than quantity. You have to create a space where the conversation in the kind of conversation that appeals to the people in your world. There are places where the conversation gets really ugly and people don’t go to the New York Times to get yelled at.” said Jonathan Landmark, deputy managing editor for digital journalism at the New York Times (Glaser 2008).

In my opinion, I do not think that the sites moderator should be the only one to moderate the comments and the participants of online conversation, the audience should moderate their own comments before they post it online. The participants should know how to balance between the rights and responsible to post the comments online. Martine (2013) lists out a few rights for participations and they are right to participate in discussions and forums, right to engage and interact on social media and websites, and right to post up an opinion without fear of violence or harassment. It’s true that we have freedom of speech on the internet but we cannot post up things that may hurt or insult others directly or indirectly. Freedom of speech is defined as ‘every person may freely speak, write and publish on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that right’ (Washington Constitution Article 1, Section 5 cited in American Civil Liberties Union 2012). Therefore, we need to bear the responsible of what we post online. Martine (2013) mentioned that we have the responsibilities to respect others and as well as respect ourselves. We must know “it’s our responsibility not to impede the basic rights of others or in any way participate in behavior that is detrimental to others. Besides, respect ourselves is equally important. We must be aware of our footprint and how this affects how we are perceived and who and what we represent” (Martine 2013).

As in conclusion, we must have self regulation to self regulate ourselves before we post up comments. We must have moral values and ethics and we must know what is proper to post on public and what is not. Although we have freedom of speech and the rights to post up whatever we want but we have the responsibilities to respect others and ourselves, therefore, think before you post anything up online publicly.

 

Reference

American Civil Liberties Union 2012, ‘Student Rights and Responsibilities in the Digital Age: A Guide for Public School Students in Washington State’, January 2012, viewed 30 May 2013, retrieved from http://aclu-wa.org/student-rights-and-responsibilities-digital-age-guide-public-school-students-washington-state

Glaser 2008, ‘Traditional Media Ready to Elevate the Conversation Online- with Moderation’, Media Shift, 16 January 2008, viewed 30 May 2013, retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/mediashift/2008/01/traditional-media-ready-to-elevate-the-conversation-online-with-moderation016

Marine 2013, ‘Rights and Responsibilities Online: Safer Internet Day 2013’, The Modern Parent, 5 February 2013, viewed 30 May 2013, retrieved from http://themodernparent.net/rights-and-responsibilities-online-safer-internet-day-2013/

Martin, F 2012, ‘Vox Populi, Vox Dei: ABC Online and the risk of dialogic interaction’, in Histories of Public Service Broadcasters on the Web, editors, N. Brugger and M. Burns. New York: Peter Lang. pp. 177-192.

Pritchard 2012, ‘The readers’ editor on… moderating online comments’, The Observer, 21 October 2012, viewed 30 May 2013, retrieved from http://www.guardian.co.uk/theobserver/2012/oct/21/readers-editor-moderating-online-comments

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White Bread Media – Google can be racist!

What is white bread media? In my understanding, white bread media means the racism, stereotype, discrimination, and misrepresentation like negative portrayal in media. There is a lot of racism, stereotyping, discrimination and misrepresentation going on in media, for example, the advertisement below gives out message that the black is the slave for the white while they bow to the white. This is an act of racism towards the black.

“Media matter because they do not merely reflect, but are also players in, key public debates, providing representations and framework which shape understandings and action.” Dreher 2013.

Media play an important role in our daily life and it influences us a lot. Therefore, as Dreher said, media shape our understandings and action. We get information from the media and we act according to the media, therefore, if the media give out stereotype and misrepresent and discrimination information, it will directly affect our action. For example, there are a lot of movie stereotype black as bad guys, criminal and so on, therefore, we will think that most of the black are bad guys and criminal and automatically stay away from them and be aware when around them. This is the impact of the stereotype and misrepresent from the media.

Do you know that Google can be racist as well? I had found an interesting article discuss about how the Google can be racist. A study has revealed that Google search results contain “significant discrimination” in ad results depends on the whose names are typed in. “According to Harvard professor Latanya Sweeney, names typically with black people were more likely to produce ads related to criminal activity” (Asian News International 2013). Latanya Sweeney had ran more than 2000 names of real people through Google searches and she found that the names that sounded black like Travon, Tamika, Ebony and Rasheed were 25 percent more likely to trigger a link taking the viewer to a search of their criminal record than names that sounded white for example, Brad, Cody, Amy and Jill. Mahdawi (2013) stated that “Googling “Emma” will probably trigger nothing more sinister than an invitation to look up Emma’s phone number and address, while Googling “Jermaine” will probably generate an ad for a criminal record research.” With this, Google might expose the racial bias and misrepresent and stereotype the black has criminal records.

Makemeapp

Besides that, Google also came out with an application called “Make me Asian” and “Make me Indian” which being accused as being racist. Google had removed these two controversial applications and has deleted the developer’s profile and all her other application after nearly 10 000 people signed petition to take down these apps. These applications stereotype Asians to have slanted eyes, being a farmer and have Fu Man Chu Mustache while stereotype Indian to have broad nose, long black hair, war paint and a feathered headband. Most importantly, these applications’ developer, Kimbery Deiss wrote that “Compare the results with your friends and laugh heartily”. This statement shows a serious discrimination towards Asian and Indian which hint that Asian and Indian is a laughing stocks. Besides, both applications have been downloaded between 50 000 and 100 000 times. These numbers show that there is a serious discrimination towards Asian and Indian happens at the western countries.

Lastly, do you think the doodle above from Google is racist? Apparently Google is being accused for being racist by having a runner looks African American and the track looks a little too much like a slice of watermelon. What do you think about it?

 

Reference

Asian News International 2013‘Google search results show “significant racial discrimination”: Report’, Asian News International, 5 February 2013, viewed 16 May 2013, retrieved from ProQuest online database.

Bautista, C 2013, ‘Google Removes “Make Me Asian” App After Protests of Racism’, Mashable, viewed 16 May 2013, retrieved from http://mashable.com/2013/01/21/google-removes-make-me-asian-app/

Curtis, R 2013, ‘Google searches show racial bias, study finds: Company denies profiling after research shows names identified as black prompt more criminal record ads’, Toronto Star, 6 February, viewed 16 May 2013, retrieved from ProQuest online database.

Dreher, T (upcoming 2014). White Bread Media. Chapter submitted to The Media and Communications in Australia, eds Stuart Cunningham and Sue Turnbull, Allen and Unwin

 “Google’s Racist Apps Removed After 8 400 + Sign Petition”, DiversityInc, viewed 16 May 2013, retrieved from http://www.diversityinc.com/diversity-and-inclusion/racism-google-7600-protest-make-me-asian-make-me-indian-apps/

Hiawatha, B 2013, ‘Racial bias alleged in Google’s ad results: Name associated with blacks prompt link to arrest search’, Boston Globe, 6 February 2013, viewed 16 May 2013, retrieved from ProQuest online database.

Mahdawi, A 2013, ‘Can Googling be racist?’, Guardian, 5 February 2013, viewed 16 May 2013, retrieved from http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/feb/05/can-googling-be-racist

Wolford 2012, ‘Google Accused of Subtle Racism Over “Black Guy Running On A Watermelon” Doodle’, WebProNews, viewed 16 May 2013, retrieved from http://www.webpronews.com/google-accused-of-subtle-racism-over-black-guy-running-on-a-watermelon-doodle-2012-08

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Digital Walled Garden

“On the internet, a walled garden is an environment that controls the user’s access to web content and services. In effect, the walled garden directs the user’s navigation within particular areas, to allow access to a selection material or prevent access to other material.” Rouse (2005).

The search engine like Google and Yahoo, the social networking like Facebook and Twitter, and YouTube are example of walled garden in the internet. Google controls the results for our search. Whereas for Facebook, “Facebook makes all undeleted massages, wall posts, photos and other interactive accessible, from today back to time the user creates their accounts, but Facebook does not guarantee such items will always be accessible” (McCown & Nelson 2009). McCown & Nelson (2009) mentioned that Facebook is “capturing large quantities of valuable personal information and interaction” (McCown & Nelson 2009). To make it simple, everything you do on Facebook are being recorded and it can’t be erase included all the personal messages that you considered as private message are just private to the public but not to Facebook. Facebook may understand you better than you do to yourself because it holds all your private and personal detail, your hobbies, your feelings, your mood, the places you like to visit, the thing you passion about, the one you care about as you stalk him or her on the Facebook.

Is it a good thing or a bad thing to have walled garden? They hold a great power and control what we can find or access to, but is it really a bad thing? For me, I don’t think it’s a total bad thing to have walled garden, it had some good points too. As for Google, it control the results in order to help us to the get the most relevant result instead of wasting our time to go through each and every website to find the information we want.  Google will place the website the relevant to our key words with inverted pyramid and with this, we can easily get the information that we want on the first page of the search result. As for YouTube, it will recommend the user video that is under the same category with the video that they view previously. YouTube will recommend the video type that the users are into it to make it convenient and easier for the users.

Then, as for Facebook, it’s not a bad thing to have Facebook to record our personal information and interaction because those information make us who we are now. It can be consider as an online diary for those active Facebook user as they frequently update their status on their Facebook and it recorded the changes of you and your life.

“If we face the truth, walled gardens attract users because they are easy to use, they have lots of integration, lots of options for what people do online are in one place, and frankly if user numbers are the indicator of success, then some of the top performing online websites, applications, communities, and platforms are walled gardens” (Brown 2011).

Just like Facebook, although it’s scary to think that Facebook may know you and understand you better than you do to yourself, but , Facebook still the most popular social networking site worldwide and people love it no matter what. So, will you stop using Facebook or let Facebook to continue to help you with your “diary”?

 

 

Reference

Brown, N 2011, ‘Facing e Truth, We all Love Walled Gardens’, Digital Society, viewed 1 May 2013, retrieved from http://www.digitalsociety.org/2011/03/facing-the-truth-we-all-love-walled-gardens/

McCown, F & Nelson, ML 2009, ‘What happens when Facebooks is gone?’ Joint Conference n
Digital Libraries
, vol.15, no.19, pp. 251-254, viewed 1 May 2013, retrieved from ACM online database.

Rouse, M 2005, “Walled Garden”,viewed 1 May 2013, retrieved from http://searchsecurity.techtarget.com/definition/walled-garden

Suffian, I2009, “Reflections of the 2008 Malaysian General Election: Role of the Internet in Political communications” viewed 1 May 2013, retrieved from www2.lse.ac.uk/IDEAS/publications/reports/pdf/…/Msia_Suffian.pdf

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Paywall

In this digital age, everyone go online to get information and knowledge. Like us, students, lecturer will upload the lecture notes and require reading online instead of giving us the hard copy of it. We also browse thru the web to get more information for our assessment and research. The most popular website for information is Wikipedia. Students will go to Wikipedia for a basic understanding about the topic before browsing thru those long, compact and hard to understand journal. Even though Wikipedia is easy to understand and convenient, but Wikipedia’s information is not credible; therefore, journal is needed for further and credible information for research. For us students, we are lucky to have free access to both library and e-library sources. We can easily get the journal and news article we wanted without need to pay the online database like Elsevier for our research. Unlike us, people need to pay to get the journal and even news article.

 “As the internet matures, consumers are increasingly being asked to pay for online content, much of which had historically been free.” – Jonathan and Attari (2012)

For example, New York Times (NYT) implemented metered paywall on its website. What is paywall? “Paywall is an arrangement whereby access is restricted to users who have paid to subscribe to the site” (Oxford Dictionaries 2013). “New York Times (NYT) recent decision to switch from online access to metered access requiring digital subscriptions.” (Jonathan & Attari 2012) New York Times , the Internet’s fifth most visited news site in United State that start to implement a paywall are likely to have a broad impact towards its visitors. Therefore, instead of New York Times, people will switch to other news sites that provide free content for information. Besides, people may switch to other form of sources to get information like credible blogger or credible website.

Jonathan and Attari had done an interesting research on “Paying for What Was Free: Lessons from the New York Times Paywall”. They have done a survey on 954 New York Times readers shortly after New York Times had announced that it would enact a metered pay wall and 11 weeks after the paywall was implemented. The results of the research show that “When participants were provided with a compelling justification for the paywall – that the NST was likely to go bankrupt without it – their support and willingness to pay increased. In contrast, when participants were provided with a justification that emphasized financial stability, their support and willingness to pay decreased.” (Jonathan & Attari 2012)

Besides, Jonathan and Attari (2012) found that “Most of the readers planned not to pay ultimately did not” and the readers “decreased their visits, devalued the NYT and frequently planned to exploit loopholes to the bypass the paywall or switch providers altogether”. The paywall system will also form a wall between the readers and news, it block the readers to read news.  It may cause the reader to stop reading the credible news but get news or information from the social networking like Facebook as they on Facebook 24/7 and its convenient. Most of the people use Facebook to update themselves with the hot news and this is dangerous because Facebook source is not credible and it maybe a false information about the news. Although paywall system is not expensive, for example $1 for unlimited access to 24 hours, but people just not willing to pay for something that is original free.

What’s your opinion towards paywall? Are you willing to pay little and get credible source?

 

Reference

Farhi, P 2009, ‘Build That Pay Wall High’, American Journalism Review, viewed 24 April 2013, retrieved from http://ruconnected.ru.ac.za/pluginfile.php/105822/mod_resource/content/0/Build_That_Pay_Wall_High_American_Journalism_Review.pdf

Jonathan, EC & Attari, SZ 2012, ‘Paying for What Was Free: Lessons from the New York Times Paywall’, Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, vol.15, no.12, viewed 24 April 2013, retrieved from http://online.liebertpub.com.ezproxy.uow.edu.au/doi/pdf/10.1089/cyber.2012.0251

Neylon, T 2013, ‘Life after Elsevier: making open access to scientific knowledge a reality’, The Guardian, viewed 24 April 2013, retrieved from http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/blog/2012/apr/24/life-elsevier-open-access-scientific-knowledge

Owen, LH 2012, ‘How to get your readers to love paywalls’, viewed 24 April 2013, retrieved from http://paidcontent.org/2012/10/31/how-to-get-your-readers-to-love-paywalls/

Oxford Dictionaries 2013, “Paywall”, viewed 24 April 2013, retrieved from http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/paywall