Sunday, November 7, 2010

Brand Recognition and Affiliation

When I was back home in Denton, I saw a billboard in our town that was an advertisement for Bud Light. The unique thing about this billboard was that all of it was in Spanish aside from the logo itself. I don't have an exact picture, but here's something like what I'm talking about:

I thought it was a powerful ad in that it catches the eyes of the majority of the town because of the difference in language, but also influences those that speak the language because they aren't used to seeing an advertisement in their native language in Denton.
While this advertisement has several appeals such as attention, the most direct appeal is affiliation. A need for affiliation often includes grouping yourself with a certain crowd or culture. The Spanish Bud Light billboard exemplifies affiliation by making it seem like that advertisement was meant for the Hispanic group. People feel like the company is making its product with their group as its focus.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Dog's Breakfast

Patrick meets Ryan, his future brother-in-law. He doesn't like the fact that his sister is marrying someone. To further escalates things, Patrick overhears Ryan talking on the phone about conspiracy against his future wife, Marilyn. At the mini-climax, Patrick attempts to kill Ryan and while his initial effort fails, Ryan is killed. This creates a transition between acts where Patrick is forced to hide Ryan's body.

In Act II, Patrick hides Ryan to prevent his sister from discovering that he has died. Things complicate as Ryan has horrible thoughts about the death, and believes he has gone crazy when Ryan's corpse shows up multiple times in and around his house. Marilyn is concerned because Ryan has been missing for some time and decides to call the police. Detective Morse, coincidentally Ryan's aunt, is sure that Ryan has been killed and suspects both Marilyn and Patrick at different times. This adds to the stress and effort to hide the death of Ryan.

In Act III, Ryan's body appears again, but this time Marilyn discovers it with Patrick. Because the detective already suspects them, they decide to hide the body by shredding it into small pieces and feeding it to their dog. Looking back at it all, Patrick realizes that he actually liked Ryan. As soon as this happens, Detective Morse reveals herself to be Ryan, and that he had never died at all.

27 Minutes - Patrick discovers Ryan is dead.

65 Minutes - Detective Morse suspects Ryan is dead, not missing, and suspects Marilyn.

78 Minutes - Patrick discovers Ryan isn't dead.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

TV is Full of Itself

Television is a self-reflexive technology that builds off of itself. By this I mean programming on television talks about other things on TV. For example, this often occurs on a comedy sitcom where a person will joke about how their station is better than a rival broadcasting station. A more common instance where TV speaks about itself is shows that literally just review what happened on other shows, generally reality shows and news programs. Programs like Entertainment Tonight and The Colbert Report are examples of recaps of what has happened recently on TV.
In a sitcom, self-reflection of TV can be seen in the Procenium arch, where an implied TV is. The Procenium arch is essentially the wall that is open to us to see the show, from the well-known basic living room set up of TV sitcoms. This is often a focus on shows where a character looks to this implied TV.
Two examples of this in shows are That 70's Show and Family Guy. In That 70's Show you can see a scenario where the classic living room is viewed, with the 'missing wall' being the angle from which we view the scene. The TV is smashed by the bowling ball and becomes the conflict of this episode.

In Family Guy, often times the characters offer their take or input on a show in a sarcastic and humorous way as seen in this scene;

Even though I completely disagree with Family Guy hating on the best show known to man, The Office, this clip shows yet again how a sitcom can involve other programming into its own.
Now here are a few more clips that relate to other shows;

And here are a few more where characters from other shows have appearances;

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Breakfast Club LS MS CU

In The Breakfast Club, the first scene shows a long shot of the high school where the movie takes place. It is a still shot, with narration dubbed over by one of the main characters in the film who is explaining the time and location of the event. This long shot was created in order to explain the setting and orientation of what is going on, as well as to show how it is the weekend and the school is abandoned and quiet.

The next set of shots are medium shots, and show some information about the situation. Several still scenes of the empty, boring, and plain looking high school inform the viewer of the dry situation the students find themselves in. Narration continues, further explaining they're situation and punishment.

Finally, close-up shots are shown of several of the characters. Their emotions are clear, all feeling ashamed, sad, and perhaps a little angry as well. Everyone is clearly frowning and upset with their current problem; detention.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Star System

The Star System in the early era of movies was a way in which the "Big 5" (MGM, Paramount, 20th Century Fox, Warner Bros., RKO) employed actors and actresses to work specifically for their studio. They contracted actors and actresses so that they could use their talent most efficiently. Movies were produced on a much quicker pace than in the current movie industry. They became the faces of specific studios so they were very important in keeping revenue up, and to compete with the other studios. Although they were contracted to a specific studio, talent was often "loaned" out to other studios. The star became associated with a specific genre of film and even a certain role that they repeatedly played. The type of talent that a studio employed often determined what kind of movie was to be made over any other deciding factor. In one specific example, John Wayne, whoever he was working for at the time, often had Western films constructed around his talent and fan base.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Old Family vs Modern Family

All In The Family, a situation comedy that ran throughout the the 70's, based many episodes on then-controversial topics that were rare on television, all while maintaining top ratings. In the specific episode we watched, a man with an artsy flair to him was assumed to be gay by the main character, Archie. Many different words with negative connotations were spoken about Mike's friend to insinuate his homosexuality. All In The Family can be compared with the new ABC comedy; Modern Family. In this show, two regular characters are a gay couple raising an adopted child. The two shows are similar in that they can cover some uncomfortable topics, depending on who the viewer is. Many episodes feature how the gay couple, Cam and Mitch, create awkward situations based around their orientation. Just like in All In The Family when Archie learns from his experiences with homosexuality (that to be gay doesn't necessarily mean you can't be tough as seen with his friend, an ex-football player), the father of the family in Modern Family, Jay, often learns from his previous assumptions of gay men (his son-in-law who is gay is good with construction work and played football in college). All In The Family addressed equality with women through the scene where Archie was in disbelief with the situation where he couldn't lift a chair that supposedly only women could lift. He found it completely unrealistic to assume that a woman could do anything physically that a man couldn't. In today's shows like Modern Family, this issue wouldn't ever really surface. Women's equality has really been done to death in media, and only a minuscule part of the population still have any problems with it, so unlike gay's rights, women's rights isn't a huge focus like it was 30, 40, and 50 years ago.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Government Regulation

I chose government regulation and intervention as the most influential force in the development of the radio industry in the 1920's because many standards and ideas were set that shaped just how this new technology would be primarily used. Government regulation is a tool for the government to assist the country's economy. The United States promotes capitalism, where minimal regulation is enforced on any industry. Socialism is generally perceived as the opposite, as it encourage public, not private, ownership of industries. Generally in the United States government regulation is only enforced when it appears to be strongly needed for an industry to function or to prevent any major economic failure, such as a monopoly being formed. Regulation is neither directly good nor bad but the degree to which it is applied can greatly affect an economy. Over-regulation can lead to a dissatisfaction among citizens as far how an industry is run because they have little direct control of it. Also, heavy regulation reduces or even eliminates competition so that potential for unfair prices and limited product choices is more likely. Under-regulation has a potential for exploitation within industries through monopolies or unequal opportunity to compete. As well as exploitation, under-regulated economies can lose jobs to outsourcing to cheaper options. Regulation during the 1920's in regards to the new radio industry greatly influenced its direction. Most specifically is the fact that AT&T was made to break up their near-monopoly over the industry in its beginnings. Government regulation was also used during World War I to have absolute control of the airwaves during the war reserved for the military. Once the airwaves were available for use after the war, the government decided it was necessary to regulate who had what frequencies and how many they had, known as frequency allocation. The supreme court wasn't immediately on board and to this day questions occasionally arise on the constitutionality of frequency allocation.

Regulation? No. This picture right here is madness!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Social Learning

The social learning theory is a way media effects its viewers through user imitation in attitudes, behaviors, and general thinking. The original theory comes from the experiments done by Bandura, where he showed children videos of adults beating a Bobo doll with a number of alternate endings that either rewarded or punish such behavior. He then put the children in a similar situation and found that the behaviors displayed were similar to those of the adults. Many example contain negative sides to social learning, but occasionally there are positive effects. This can be seen in the amount of fatalities from car accidents in the US. The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) shows in their statistical studies that in 2008 there were less fatalities from car accidents than in the past 14 years. Regardless of the fact that more cars and people fill the roads each year, the number remained below 35,000. The chart can be viewed here. While car safety improvements can definitely be attributed to the decrease in deaths, another cohort responsible for the decrease is a raise in awareness about the issue. Here are a couple of commercials that have put the theory of social learning into action by raising awareness and encouraging viewers to think before making a big mistake behind the wheel.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


I think the concept of framing is well demonstrated in the tv commercial from Kia Motors where, throughout the one minute spot, Kia works to associate purchasing one of their vehicles with straight up having a blast. This is a common tool used in advertising where the company infers that if you purchase their product, all aspects of your life will improve, regardless of whether or not the product has any direct influence over things like happiness or relationships. Framing is a media practice that helps enforce hegemony by showing the viewer how to think of an issue and what is associated with that issue. In these two photos you can see how a different setting can help the viewer determine what they think of the subject;



In this example, the theme, the war in Iraq, can be determined or "framed" by the setting and context. Liberation vs defeat. Assistance vs pain. Life vs death. Both images contain the same subject, but due to framing, the viewers' outlook can be affected.
In the Kia commercial, characters are shown having a great time, all the while using their new Kia vehicle. If someone thinks about what they are actually watching, they will notice that clearly, the car itself did not create their "fun times". Ironically the only scenes which involve the characters having a good time while with the car both have warning subtitles at the bottom, the first being that the jump they did over the hill with the car was done by a professional and you should actually never attempt such a maneuver, and the second scene where one of the character stands up out of the sun roof of the car while the white subtitles warn that you should always have your seat belt on. Regardless of these facts, the overall feel of the commercial leaves you, if only sub-consciously. thinking that buying that Kia might add a little spice to your boring life, thanks to that which is the almighty framing.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

My first RTF post

Hey I'm Jacob and I am taking RTF 305 because:
  • I enjoy television
  • I enjoy film
  • I suppose I enjoy radio...
  • It was what my FIG was taking
I like hearing and discussing topics about different media and how it is always changing. I am majoring in Advertising and RTF ties into advertising in so many ways. Thanks to radio, television, and in the past ten years the internet, advertising has become more present and powerful than ever before. I hope to learn how media affects our lives and through this knowledge better understand how to use advertising in it's greatest potential. Here is an example of how media interacts with each other over different mediums.


From the original Doublemint Gum commercial, Chris Brown released his single, Forever.

From this single, a newly wed couple created this video.

From this wedding video, the writers of The Office were inspired to create their own version using characters from the show.

Chain reaction baby. Mind freak!

Anyways here is a blog I like;