BCM 111

Week 2 – Blog Post 1

The popular culture I consume are Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Cinematic Universe is a well-known movie company, the fans of Marvel are all around the world. People around the world know about Marvel by their superheroes
Superheroes have always played a pivotal role in popular culture. From their first publication on comic book pages in the late 1930s to the video game revolution in the 1980s. Even today, superheroes are still as popular in Generation Z as baby boomers and Generation X.
Nevertheless, the superhero movie was revived in 2008, when Marvel Studios gambled and released Iron Man, while Robert Downey Jr. became a famous genius, billionaire and playboy philanthropists. Iron Man later became the first work in the first stage of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Since the release of “Iron Man”, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has continued to expand and develop, covering a series of heroes and villains from all corners of the universe, as well as a real world inspired by the storyline.
What makes the Marvel Cinematic Universe work so well is attributed to the fact that Marvel Studios embrace both the comics and the movies – instead of taking inspiration directly from the pages of the comic book only.
Marvel Studios has successfully introduced a generation of cinemagoers to a host of rich and diverse characters. Fans are attached to these characters, they root for them to succeed and will always go to the cinema to watch their latest adventure.
Regardless of personal taste and feelings towards the movies, Marvel Studios are still creating well-respected and grounded pieces of cinema and will continue to shape Hollywood base on these ideals for years to come.
By giving the fans what they want to see, for example: strong female leads and movies that tastefully feature issues that reflect the broader mood of the world. Marvel will continue to sell tickets well into the future, shaping the minds of future generations and ultimately making superheroes “cool” again (not like they aren’t already, mind).
The reason that I will consume on Marvel it is because I like the ‘Iron Man’ as a superheroes character, every teenagers and kids have their favourite character. Because of the different series, every time when a new movie released, there are people using different social media platform to discuss about the characters and the plots in the movie. 
The latest movie from the Marvel Studio is “Avengers: Endgame”, everyone is talking about it once it released, it has been the most popular topic around the world at that period of time. Marvel’s gambit to propel “Avengers: Endgame” to become the top-grossing movie of all time finally paid off. When people talking about Marvel, which means that the Marvel Studio is widely favoured and well-liked by many people. 
We can refer to the book “Cultural Theory and Popular Culture” by John Storey. In the first chapter, he proposes 6 definitions of popular culture, the first one he proposed is ‘…simply, culture that is widely favoured or well-liked by many people’. Which can support how Marvel Cinematic Universe shaped the popular culture.

Week 3 – Blog Post 2

In my opinion, I think citizen journalism through social media has both positives and negatives. Because of the emergence of new media, the number of people reading traditional media is declining. Both the markets and the technologies are growing symbiotically as the availability of media services has grown. Most people nowadays use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms as their primary source of information and news.
The journalistic industry is changing from traditional forms of media to online modes. On the internet, there are new forms of journalism available to the public, but this has negative effects for the traditional media and is placing them under pressure if the industry wishes to prevail in this new era. The reasons for this are include the decrease of advertising revenues and the competition with free online media.
Citizen journalists can communicate and publish information through a wide variety of forms, such as opening blogs or making accounts on different social media platforms independently or are given the opportunity by large newspaper companies to publish on their website in different formats like blog posts or reviews. 
Web 2.0 has improved all forms of citizen media, including social networking sites, wiki pages, and blogs. There is more diverse information to share rather than just articles and texts, users can now create memes, gif, etc which attract different demographics, which encourages them to share their beliefs and ideologies. Mobile phones now have the ability to share images, videos and web content with a simple process.
YouTube is one of the biggest platforms which allows any user to create their own video channels and contribute their messages. it is also the most common platform where citizen journalists post their information and share this to the world, for example citizen journalists could conduct a street interview and post it on YouTube, they can create a short video to promote issues surrounding climate change or journalists can share videos about things happening around the world, like political protests.
These social media platforms are changing the audiences for these messages and information from passive recipients to proactive consumers who share what they want, when they want it and how they want it.
To use a contemporary world example about citizen journalism, I think Hong Kong is a good example. In 2019, Hong Kong had its biggest protest ever which against plans to allow extradition to mainland China. During the protest, different traditional media outlets reported different versions of the truth about some key conflicts and situations in the movement. Most of these outlets have lied in an effort to protect the police because they are controlled by the government and seek to hide the truth. But because of forms of citizen journalism, members of the general public risked their lives to go to the front line and record what they have seen and post it on social media and show the truth to the public. 
Roberts J, 2019, “The erosion of Ethics: from citizen journalism to social media”, Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, Vol. 17, No. 4, Pp. 409-421 
Sánchez-Villar J, 2019, “The use of blogs as social media tools of political communication: citizen journalism and public opinion 2.0.”, Communication & Society (Formerly Comunicación y Sociedad), Vol. 32, No. 1, Pp. 39-55

Week 4 – Blog Post 3

Instagram is one of the social media platforms that I use to present a sense of myself. According to the 2020 rankings of the most popular social media platforms which is determined by the number of unique monthly visitors, Instagram is the third biggest site preceding Facebook and YouTube with 9 million monthly visits. The demographic of Instagram users is generally younger than Facebook with 75% of people aged between 18 and 24, as opposed to 84% of Facebook users in the age bracket of 25 and 30.
On Instagram, users can post almost anything they want, as long as it adheres to the guidelines of the platform, which usually relates to appropriate material and not infringing upon specific media’s copyright. There is another popular feature of Instagram, coined ‘Instagram Stories’. These allow users to take short videos or photos and posting them for a maximum 24-hour period. Similarly, to other social media platforms, when posting on Instagram, users can add hashtags (e.g. #BLM, used to create an international discussion and movement on racial discrimination) relating to the post’s material such as a feeling or discussion topic. This links their post to a broader global medium page which you can use to find people with similar ideas and opinions. This also helps Instagram to further develop their algorithms as to a user’s interests.
When creating an Instagram account there are many privacy settings available, including the option to have a public or private profile, which determines who can see your posts. When an account is set to ‘private’, users can approve the people who request to be friends but when set to ‘public’, any Instagram user or someone that searches the user’s Instagram handle can see all material posted and become a ‘follower’. Instagram also has a feature called ‘Close Friends’, which lets users create a separate list of followers to grant special viewing permissions. When posting a ‘story’ to Instagram, users will be able to differentiate between posting for everyone and posting to their group of Close Friends.
Instagram also presents many business and marketing opportunities. This can be achieved by businesses simply posting promotional material, buying advertisement space from Instagram or by hiring a social media influencer to promote a business’s product. 
The intended audience of my personal Instagram account are my friends and mutual friends from school, family and other people who I have connected with. As an international student, I can use social media platforms like Instagram to keep in contact with my friends and family by interacting with their photos or videos that they upload, and they too will also be updated with what I am doing by what I upload. 
By posting on Instagram, your followers will be updated with the recent activities and highlights of your life. Often people don’t share the mundane, boring aspects of their lives, instead they will choose the most interesting parts of their lives to share with the public to save them photographically as a good memory.
Christina S, Adriana M, Naomi G, Kristen G, 2018, “Why do college students prefer Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram? Sit affordances, tensions between privacy and self-expression, and implications for social capital”. Computers in Human Behaviour, vol. 86, pp.276-288
Tobias-Mamina R, Kempen E, Chinomona R, Sly M, 2020, “African Journal of Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure, vol. 9, no. 3, pp. 274-287

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