Body Image: A creation of media.

This video called “Media’s Effects on Teen Girl’s Body Image & Self Esteem” talks about the problems usually girls have today with their body image. Nobody seems to be satisfied. If you ask a group of girls if they are satisfied with their body, no more than 15% will raise their hands. We are always trying to get slimmer, look prettier, if we have straight hair, you try to curl it to give it volume, if you have curly hair, you spend 30 minutes in the bathroom every mornig ironing to make it look straight.
What causes this behaviors? Of course, the media. Through the magazines we read the TV shows we watch and commercials we see, we build up this idea in our heads of how the perfect body has to be, how do we have to look and even how do we have to act -to be a perfect woman.

Yes, the media is to blame for this, but type in on Youtube “media’s influence on teenagers” and a million videos pop up about how bad the media is, how evil, how is hurting us and hour kids.. But I ask myself: Is it all medias fault?
It is too easy critizise the media and blame everything on “how media falsely portrays society” and without being hypocritical (since my older post “The Axe Efect – Women Depiction” critizises how media depicts women), I would like to take a stand on favor of the media.

Although I agree with the fact that media influences us, and specially teenagers, who are more vulnerable, we all contribute to this. We are stupid enough to still think that the media way is the correct way, and we believe everything they say. A lot of parents, when their kids are todlers, show them to play with “the right” toys. They buy their little girl a doll for her birthday, and they tell their boy to not play with her because he is too agressive, and he has to take care of his sister. Most of the times parents don’t even realize, they learned when they were young and unconciously teach their kids the same values.
Also, boys are taught from an early age that they have to be the ones to ask out a girl if they like her. And in high school they are the ones who ask girls to prom. What would happen if it was the other way around? Ha ha. That girl would be made fun of for the rest of her high school life. Guys flirt with girls, and girls act like their innocent, girls – in general terms- plan their weddings, not their fiancees. And it is usually because they are taught to like planning it.

Also, everybody LOVES to criticise. We all criticise everything, from politics decisions to that girls outfit today, or how the teacher graded my paper. Why? I don’t know. But it for sure would be very interesting to learn why. There are probably some sociologic studies out there that explain human behavior and why we love to criticise everything we can.

So even though I agree with this video, and I think the media has a huge power over the public – which is very easy to convince – our behavior, our perception of beauty, and the perception parents transmit to their children all comes from the society and from our own personal values. The media is just who spreads it out globally.

The Newsroom

Last year I watched the first season of the show The Newsroom. It premiered on HBO on June 24, 2012. The show examines the lives of the people who work at Atlantis Cable News (ACN) a fictitious major news outlet, which broadcasts News Night. Jeff Daniels plays the main character, the anchor Will McAvoy, who puts together the news show a different way of telling the news. His ex (Emily Mortimer) is his new producer. Due to McAvoy’s “rough way of presenting the news” they face a lot of problems with their boss, the press etc.

It is an interesting show because it gives a different perspective of a newsroom nowadays. While all the media stations are biased towards their owners interest, The Newsroom presents a different way of telling the news, basing on facts and not worrying about the publics critics. Nevertheless, critics are hard to this show for its long and elaborated dialogs. It was not believed that it would even make to the second season, but they just signed for the third season, so for those who can’t get enough, get ready for more.

Here is a sneak peak of the second season that came out on July 14, 2013.

The AXE Effect – Women depiction.

Interesting Axe commercial where women are portrayed as some kind of “animal” responding to their instincts awaked by the Axe effect.

I thought this was an interesting commercial where the Axe company portrays women as some kind of “animal” following their instincts , running through the jungle and swimming across the sea to get to the man spraying Axe over himself. This advertising technique of “showing” -young- customers how awesome their life would be if they used their product is being used by several companies, not only Axe. They create the -false- idea that their product would make you more handsome, attractive, rich, successful with women, and many other qualities. “If you spray yourself with Axe, women will come to you right away” This is the main message that this commercial transmits.

The Axe brand has been doing this kind of advertising campaigns for a long time now. They wanted their product to be identified as a “sexual weapon”. Their target audience is young men (18-24) who want to be successful with women. Axe has given the message that their body spray makes men more attractive to women — who they present as brainless brainless objects (sometimes headless) who exist to please men. (J. Zeilinger. January, 2013). Therefore, does sexism sell? Axe thinks it does. Paloma Aleman states that “[Axe’s] products somehow build confidence in straight men”.

Axe’s new campaign, which consists of five ads stereotyping women- Brainy Girl, High Maintenance Girl, Flirty Girl, Party Girl, and Sporty Girl. All five advertisements use stereotypes about women that supposedly “everyday men” have to deal with. But this campaign not only stereotypes women as pretty, sexy, funny, confident, etc. It persuades their target audience -the man-. One of the commercials, the Flirty Girl, does not even have a “subliminal” message, like we are used to in commercials, it sends a direct message to “you” the audience. The omnipresent narrator guides the unconfident, lame man (who could be you) from being the “boyfriend of a flirty girl, a man that stays calmly by as his lady works the floor” to take control of the situation by a “more manly” attitude. And you will only get this attitude if you use the Cool Metal Axe.

AXE_Effect2

This is not only an example of how the media persuades their target audience, it also exemplifies the stereotipation made -in this case of both women and men-. Do we need to be reminded that not all women look like these women in the commercials, and that, as a matter of fact, the Axe products do not attract women like they show in this commercial? Obviously the majority of customers do not believe that that -women running towards them- will happen if they spray Axe over their bodies, however, the Axe campaign does work says Marksoc Shri ram. We all complain about the irreal scenarios shown in commercials such as the Axe ones and how the media sells smoke, yet -one more time- they have proven the undeniable influence they have over the customers, not matter how irrealistic their advertising campaigns are.