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Reinventing Mass Media with 10,000 Little Jon Stewarts


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Despite the potential for media as a tool for engagement and democracy, the media industry today acts largely as a one-way flow of information and ideas. News, advertising and entertainment reflect only a handful of dominant narratives, and messages countering those narratives are easily shut down by corporations with the money and influence needed to shape the conversation. Major copyright and patent holders can – and do – intimidate those who challenge their products, and a lack of rights awareness combined with a tightly centralized media industry put innovation and freedom of speech in jeopardy.

However, a handful of voices have permeated the mainstream, and demonstrated that it is possible for nuance and dissent to take root and effect broad change. Popular critics like Jon Stewart, W. Kamau Bell and others are using humor and remix to challenge the media industry even while working within it, and a surge in the ethos of self-creation has given rise to the Maker Movement, MOOCs, crowdfunding and more. As a new generation of media producers grows up in these new systems for empowerment, our concepts of what it means to access, control and create media and technology are at a critical moment of shift.

In this session, The LAMP’s Emily Long will discuss this sea change in media-making and technology use through the lens of working with low-income communities to create “10,000 little Jon Stewarts,” and what’s next in a venture that confronts how we learn, create and interact with media messages.

Published in: Technology
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Reinventing Mass Media with 10,000 Little Jon Stewarts

  1. 1. Reinventing Mass Media with 10,000 Little Jon Stewarts Emily Long, The LAMP @emlong | @thelampnyc |
  2. 2. @emlong | @thelampnyc
  3. 3. @emlong | @thelampnyc
  4. 4. Source: Rideout, Victoria J., et al. “Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8- to 18-Year-Olds.” Kaiser Family Foundation, January 2010. Media exposure of 8- to 18-year-olds by age, race, gender and parents’ education @emlong | @thelampnyc
  5. 5. Mission of The LAMP (Learning About Multimedia Project): “Educate and equip people to shape the media landscape through hands-on learning.” @emlong | @thelampnyc
  6. 6. @emlong | @thelampnyc
  7. 7. Leslie Moonves CEO of CBS Corporation Robert Pittman CEO, Chairman of Clear Channel Communications Brian L. Roberts CEO, Chairman of Comcast Corporation Bob Iger Chairman of The Walt Disney Company Rupert Murdoch CEO of News Corporation Jeffrey Bewkes CEO of Time Warner, Inc. Philippe Dauman CEO of Viacom
  8. 8. Where is everyone else? •Also in 2013, two-thirds of newsroom staff were male, 12.3% were minorities.5 1. Smith, Dr. Stacy L. et al. “Gender Inequality in 500 Popular Films: Examining On-Screen Portrayals and Behind-the-Scenes Employment Patterns in Motion Pictures Released between 2007-20012.” Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism, May 2013. 2. Smith, Dr. Stacy L. et al. “Race/Ethnicity in 500 Popular Films: Is the Key to Diversifying Cinematic Content held in the Hand of the Black Director?” Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism, October 2013. 3. Data compiled by Barbara Ericson using data provided by College Board. Available at 4. “In Search of Growth: Harvey Nash CIO Survey 2012” available at 5. American Society of News Editors, 2013 Census. Available at •Of 500 top-grossing films in 2012, women represented 28.4% of all speaking characters.1 In the top 100 films for the same year, 10.8% of speaking characters were Black, 5% were Asian, 4.2% were Hispanic.2 • In 2013, no women took the AP Computing Science exam in 3 states. 11 states had no Black students take the exam, 8 states had no Hispanic students take the exam.3 •In 2012, 9% of CIOs at American-based tech firms were women (down from 11% in 2011).4
  9. 9. @emlong | @thelampnyc
  10. 10. @emlong | @thelampnyc
  11. 11. “So you want people to stop using media?” @emlong | @thelampnyc
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  15. 15. @emlong | @thelampnyc