As an organization interested in media impact, our “water cooler” chatter around the office often includes TV Series and Documentaries that mirror past and present, sentimental TV specials, and media trends that affect us. Read on to see the meaningful media and cultural phenomenons HI staff has been talking about in June:
- Featured Analysis: The People vs. O.J. Simpson and O.J.: Made in America
- Zika Virus, the Olympics and Agenda Setting
- Shark Week
- The Evolution of Broadcast Censorship
Virtual reality is in the eye of the beholder. Filmmaker and entrepreneur Chris Milk optimistically calls VR an “empathy machine,” while the Wall Street Journal warns that VR’s “hype is about to come crashing down.” Across this spectrum of opinion, the only thing everyone can agree on is that it’s a newly accessible medium offering novel experiences for audiences.Do these experiences lead to empathy? If you define empathy as, “knowing and feeling what another person knows and feels,” of course some VR stories do. So do some books, radio programs, and movies – each in their own way. Saying VR is an empathy machine is like saying a paintbrush is an art machine. There are myriad ways to generate aspects of empathy with media, just like there are infinite ways to create forms of art with tools.
As an organization interested in media impact, our “water cooler” chatter around the office often includes TV series that shocked us and exposed us to something new, or video games we were impressed by. Read on to see the meaningful media HI staff has been talking about in May:
- Featuring: Law and Order: Special Victims Unit
- Game of Thrones
- Bates Motel
This article was originally published on The Huffington Post.How many presidential candidates have you actually met in person? Not that many. A large majority of us — the electorate — meet our candidates through media. Whether it is watching a debate on television, scanning social media commentary from friends, or reading political analysis in a newspaper, nearly all of the evidence the presidential electorate utilizes in its voting decisions is delivered by media. If we are to have a chance at understanding how this evidence leads to a decision on Election Day then we must zoom in on the cycle of evidence and decision formation: did a campaign commercial or a debate appearance sway the voter’s choice? Did either compel the voter to donate to the candidate’s campaign or PAC?
“This isn’t a financial story – this is a psychological story.”This was the strategy behind Madoff, the ABC mini-series written by Ben Robbins that tells the tale of Bernie Madoff, the stockbroker associated with one of the largest Ponzi schemes and fraud convictions in American history. Ben joined Harmony Institute to discuss the production, the developing relationship between news and entertainment, and what captivates viewers.
People have different beliefs about what sorts of things are morally relevant. Most people agree that it is morally wrong to harm a child or cheat a stranger, but there is less agreement on the morality of respect for authority figures, loyalty to one’s community or country, or sexual chastity. Moral Foundations Theory (MFT) posits that that there is an organizing principle underlying this moral diversity; namely, that people’s moral concerns can be organized into five broad domains or “foundations.” These are harm, fairness, respect for authority, ingroup loyalty, and physical/spiritual purity.
As an organization interested in media impact, our “water cooler” chatter around the office took a different turn for April. This month, we ventured out to the Tribeca Film Festival. Many associate the festival with film, so we decided to spend our time exploring the lesser known but equally interesting side — the stories told through the interactive, immersive and virtual reality exhibits. Read on to see some of the meaningful media HI staff has been talking about from Tribeca in these emerging forms of storytelling:
We recently had Nancy Schwartzman visit Harmony Institute to talk about her work at the intersection of youth, culture, new technology, sexual assault, and storytelling. Her first film The Line, in collaboration with a campaign supported by The Fledgling Fund, started a conversation about sexual consent, assault and drawing your own boundaries among college students around the nation. Her next film xoxosms continued to explore youth culture and online relationships, seeking to understand “digital intimacy.”