Hidden In Plain Sight (Audio-visual Assignment – ‘What Is Hidden’)

With over 1 million Australians suffering from eating disorders, why is this illness so actively hidden from us. Lack of education and public misconception are one of the biggest challenges people with eating disorders must face. Although, once these issues are brought to the surface, they can be beaten.

 Eating Disorders are defined as any range of psychological disorders characterized by abnormal or disturbed eating habits, such as anorexia nervosa. The disturbance of eating habits aforementioned is not always clear; including – but not limited too – laxative abuse, binge eating and vomiting after eating. This furthermore leads to the hidden nature of eating disorders.

Braiya is an 18-year-old girl, who has recently overcoming a suffering, which began plaguing her in her early teenage years. She has been diagnosed with eating disorders, which have furthermore caused her to be diagnosed with anxiety and depression.

 “I’ve found that there is a big difference between knowing about eating disorders and knowing someone with an eating disorder. But what troubles me the most, is that I had no idea that one of my closest friends had been hiding their struggle for years”

– Mitchell Flanagan

Her struggle was hidden from most who knew her. The reasoning, by which she hid her disorder, was the fear of public misconception. This is similar among all people struggling with diagnosed (or undiagnosed) eating disorders. Braiya believes that the biggest problem with addressing eating disorders is lack of education, which then leads to the negative reactions people with eating disorders receive.

 “Negative reactions, through the struggle, would make me doubt my own ability to get through it. And you’d always be like, I can’t be sick enough, so I don’t deserve any help… obviously I’m not doing it good enough”

– Braiya

 In ABC news report – University of Canberra eating disorder specialist Dr. Vivienne Lewis explains that exposing the issue is the best, if not, the only way of tackling eating disorders. (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-12-11/almost-one-million-australians-suffer-eating-disorders/4420124)

 “This is a hidden illness which is impacting on far more people than others may think,” she said.

“Issues like these can’t stay hidden forever.”

This lack of education has led to a breakdown of communication between sufferers and their support network. Which has only caused the people affected by this illness, to continue hiding their struggles.

Follow my assignment process through my recent tweets.
– https://twitter.com/Mitchellf282
– https://storify.com/Mitchellf282/hidden-in-plain-sight-production-process

Definition of Eating disorders (Video)

Phil – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p7RwxtSpt0Y

  • Professional definition

Kati Morten – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWZL6eJHNS8

  • More personal FAQ
  • Addressing commonly asked questions

Overview of eating disorders here
Nov 22, 2013

  • At the end of 2012 it was estimated that eating disorders affected nearly 1 million Australians 1
  • Prevalence of eating disorders is increasing amongst boys and men 1
  • 90% of cases of anorexia nervosa (AN) and bulimia nervosa (BN) occur in females 1
  • Approximately 15% of women experience an eating disorder at some point during their life 1
  • An estimated 20% of females have an undiagnosed eating disorder 3

More helpful sits with statistics




Globalisation, Media flows and Saturation Coverage

So this is my first blog of BCM111 (International Media Studies). So be kind when reading and critiquing my work. Just a heads up, the following 8 post will be reflections of my lectures and tutorials for BCM111 as I complete the course. Make use of my Blogroll (on the side of the page) or my hashtags (at the end of the post) to differentiate my BCM111 post from my other blog post. Hope you enjoy the Issues I raise, and I encourage you to comment on my work, and do further readings on the subjects I discuss. I will hyperlink to relevant sources wherever possible to help you do this. Thanks!

Anyway, now that the formalities are out of the way. Let’s focus on the issues covered in week 2 of my BCM111 course.

Globalisation was the concept being explored this week. Focussing on the ideas of globalisation and how these ideas are applied to the media. In my post I will be exploring information and a general understanding of globalisation, leading onto media flows and the dimensions in which these flows are made.

Beginning with globalisation, the Oxford dictionary defines it as “The process by which businesses or other organisations develop international influence or start operating on an international scale” (http://www.oxforddictionaries.

For Example; McDonalds operates on an international level. Critics of globalisation suggested that the introduction of foreign companies – like McDonalds – could affect the culture of certain areas. This then raises issues surrounding orientalism (clashes between eastern and western cultures. I will explore this issue in further blog post, but for now here is a link to a definition or orientalism: http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/orientalism). This can have negative effects globally.

Although these various actors’ effect cultures that they amerce into, it is worth mentioning that the actors and corporations that go into countries, themselves also get changed. This is known as multi-directional flows. Organisations will adapt to suit the culture, appropriating their advertisement, products and in essence how they deliver their brand (or message).

These examples of globalisation and multi-directional flows, work the same way in the media. Media is appropriated and changed from country to country, this is essential because different cultures understand information in different ways.

Global flows – linking in with globalisation – explores what influences international communities and cultures. Issues like Technology, economy, politics and military interest. From these issues comes the dimensions which define global flows

There are 5 dimensions of global flows.

  • Ethnoscapes
  • Technoscapes
  • Financescapes
  • Mediascapes
  • Ideoscapes

The definitions of these scapes can be found at this link: https://www.amherst.edu/academiclife/departments/courses/1011F/MUSI/MUSI-04-1011F/blog/node/229354

These global flows also affect how media travels internationally. Which is a no brainer since this is the international media subject.

This week’s lecture was a basic outline of globalisation and the links it has to media flows. As the course progresses, I predict that we will explore these issues more in depth and focus on their relations to the media.

Thanks for reading. I encourage you to leave comments in the section below if you have any questions or feedback.

Climate Change as Global News

false-blanace-e1349303753730Week 10’s lecture was presented by Dr Tanja Dreher. Dreher focused on the balance – or false balance – of reporting on climate change in the media, especially in Australian media. Dreher also spoke about the concept of ‘voice for the voices.’ However, since my blog is restricted by a word count, I will only be focusing on the theory of balance, relative to the reporting of climate change in western media.

If you want more information on ‘voice for the voiceless,’ check the references at the end of this post for further readings and links to relevant sites.
To understand how the media reports initially, I recommend you reading my previous post (http://wp.me/p4pl8U-1H) which explains ‘news values’ and the dimensions of reporting that journalist follow. The relevant news value in terms of reporting on climate change are; relevance, and elite referencing.

In terms of relevance, climate change is only in the media at certain times. For example, after a climate change summit in which your political leader attends, that’s when climate change is newsworthy. But during the rest of the year other subjects (such as war and international relations) are reported on, pushing climate change back.

So what is balance and false balance?

The concept of balance in the media is the idea that opposing perspectives should both get reported on equally, to avoid bias. Although, in some cases, this promotes bias. The Fig1-pie2-with_logo1_copyFig1-pie2-with_logo1_copybalance of reporting on issues such as climate change, academics – such as Bud Ward – shun the media for ‘providing space disproportionate to its scientific credibility.’ (Ward 2009: 14) When considered the fact that – according to NASA – ‘Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that climate-warming trends over the past century are very likely due to human activities,’ (http://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus/ This link will also take you to a list of scientific organisations that support these claims, further readings to support this statement are also below in the reference list).

So, since this is a media subject, let’s explore these facts in terms of the balance of media.

For a theory so widely accepted, why would journalist report on both sides of climate change so evenly? The first reason is large oil and coal industries vested interest, (more information on this idea can be found in this Greenpeace report: http://www.mintpressnews.com/greenpeace-report-big-oil-funding-climate-denial-research/51598/) corporations who would be disadvantages by reforms in the way we handle climate change would be greatly affected. So these corporations allegedly fund research against climate change. Which means commentators and influences in our media are most likely being pushed to report on facts that disprove climate change. This is an example of ‘false balance’ of power.

The false balance leads to confusion in the public. As the public is mediated by what they are told, many contradictory arguments confuse and deter individuals, resulting in the matter becoming less urgent issue.

It is only fair that I mention sources where you can research, in detail, the research of climate change scientist. Evidence against the NASA statement in particular can be found here: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303480304579578462813553136. This sites report is based on the statement, “Yet the assertion that 97% of scientists believe that climate change is a man-made, urgent problem is a fiction. The so-called consensus comes from a handful of surveys and abstract-counting exercises that have been contradicted by more reliable research.”

Another good site that compares hundreds of essays and journal articles on both sides of climate change is; http://climatedebatedaily.com/. However, the balance of media is again questioned. Why is there hundreds of articles supporting each side? If the media were to accurately depict scientific research, shouldn’t there be thousands of articles supporting climate change and a few opposing it?

Links to images used:



Further readings that support the large consensus of climate change:

R. L. Anderegg, “Expert Credibility in Climate Change,” Proceedings of the National Academy of SciencesVol. 107 No. 27, 12107-12109 (21 June 2010); DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1003187107.

T. Doran & M. K. Zimmerman, “Examining the Scientific Consensus on Climate Change,” Eos Transactions American Geophysical UnionVol. 90 Issue 3 (2009), 22; DOI: 10.1029/2009EO030002.

 Oreskes, “Beyond the Ivory Tower: The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change,” ScienceVol. 306 no. 5702, p. 1686 (3 December 2004); DOI: 10.1126/science.1103618.

Further Readings:

Jari Lyytimäki (2009) ‘Mulling over the climate debate: Media education on climate change’. Journal of Sustainable Development, vol. 2, no. 3.

Gavin, N. (2009) ‘Addressing climate change: a media perspective’, Environmental Politics, vol. 18, no. 5, pp. 765-780.

They’re Just Stories.

News stories are called ‘stories’ for a reason. They are narratives consequential of journalist routines. These routines draw on several different components, each offering a dimension to the story that would hopefully make it more appealing to the public. These are called ‘news values’.

I will explore news values shortly, but first I want to address that news reporting is based heavily on appealing to the audience and satisfying them. This is done by reporting on relevant, or ‘trending’ news stories. As a result, most news will be common among multiple media outlets.

So, there are several layers of appeal that most journalist would try to fulfil when writing a story. These are as follows;

Cultural Proximity

  • Familiar and culturally similar events. These events resonate with our sense of nationalism, where by the audience will be more likely to watch the event if they are form the same ‘imagined community’ or nation.


  • Similar to Cultural proximity, however this value is more related to what’s trending at the time.


  • The more unexpected the event is, the more popular it will be. This then promotes sensationalism in news stories.


  • Events that can be drawn out, and can produce multiple stories are more likely to be reported on. An excellent example of this was the disappearance of MH370, this event dominated the news for over a month.

Elite References

  • A story is more plausible – and the audience will believe it more – if there is an expert opinion used as evidence. These opinions often come from people we hold in high regard. Such as; academics, politicians and even celebrities.


  • A negative story is easier to package. There is also less opposition so the story is more likely to be received easier.


  • This relates to the editorials composition of his news platform. For example – in a newspaper – the sensational and relevant news story will be on the front page. This story is often negative, so to avoid negative motifs throughout your paper (which can lead to a disgruntled audience) an editor may put a positive, yet unimportant story on the second and third page.


  • This value is simple. The more personal the story, the easier it is for the audience to relate.

Although, due to the declining popularity of traditional forms of media, it has become even more crucial that these conditions are met. This also leads to sensationalizing these values, which –although it makes for better reading – the audience still remains uneducated.



Further Readings:

Harlow, S., Thomas J. Johnson (2011) ‘The Arab Spring| Overthrowing the Protest Paradigm? How The New York Times, Global Voices and Twitter Covered the Egyptian Revolution’. International Journal of Communication, Vol 5 pp.1379-54.

Chouliaraki, L. (2008) ‘The symbolic power of transnational media: Managing the visibility of suffering’. Global Media and Communication, vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 329-351.

Hanusch, F. (2008) ‘Publishing the perished: The visibility of foreign death in Australian quality newspapers’, Media International Australia, vol. 125, pp. 29-45.

Elad Segev (2008) ‘The Imagined International Community: Dominant American Priorities and Agendas in Google News’. Global Media Journal, vol. 7, no. 13.

Is Drama as a Genre Culturally Specific?

Drama as a genre is considered –like Comedy- are culturally specific. I have explored cultural specificity in the last blog post (hyperlink here).


The lecture this week was a discussion surrounding the adaptations and appropriations of Sherlock throughout history, starting from Edgar Alan Poe’s first detective narrative, published in 1841. Then onto more recent adaptations like ‘Sherlock’ and ‘Elementary’ The lecture then exploring the ideas that the adaptations are different from region to region.


In this post, I will explore the difference between the American and English genre of Drama (specifically crime drama)

The English genre of crime drama was firstly known as ‘English Country House,’ it was given this name because more time than not, the crimes took place in an English country house. The most notable writer of this time was Agatha Christie, specialising in writing English detective fiction.

Another Crime drama sub-genre is the, ‘locked room mystery’. Were a crime is committed under apparently impossible circumstances. E.g. a locked room that no one could enter or leave.

(More information on Crime drama here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crime_fiction#A_reassessment_of_critical_ideals
Remember, Wikipedia is not always a reliable source so I encourage you to use this source to get a vague understanding, then do further readings with the sources below.)

The America crime drama genre has slight differences compared to the UK dramas. This is necessary when trying to appeal to different demographics. Although there are some fundamental concepts that don’t change, these concepts are widely recognised by a variety of audiences. Similarities between America and English crime dramas are:

  • A hard boiled hero
  • The hero is separated from the villain by a very grey area (often the hero must do questionable things to beat the villain)
  • Usually a broke character

The America crime drama is known as ‘private eye’ drama. Characteristics of the ‘private eye’ – that are not prominently included in the English counterpart – include;

  • More romantic involvement to appeal to Americans need for sensational storylines.
  • A more comedic storyline

Romantic indulgent and comedy are two major ideas that Americans need in their television programs, for the programs to appeal to the audience.

These fundamental concepts of the detective narrative are different among these two cultures. This gives evidence to the notion that shows need to be adapted when being aired overseas. These points also raise the question. Are the English more sophisticated since their television programs appeal to their mind (focusing on good storylines and character development), rather than the America genre which appeals to the audiences expectation for comedy and romantic entanglement?

Let me know what you guys think in the comment section below.

Further Readings:

Journal article for Sherlock

Chapter in Book :Police and Crime Drama :Investigating Male Authority

Chapter in Book: Sherlock Holmes and the Authenticity of Crime.

Breaking Comedic Rules & How Comedy Translates

This week we had Sue Turnbull lecture us on the translatability of comedy over various cultures, exploring local television in a global context. Sue used ‘Kath and Kim” as her major case study, whilst also mentioning other comedies that have been translated over cultures; such as ‘Jonah from Tonga’ and ‘The Office’.

From the case studies used in the lecture, it soon became quite clear that there was a problem with comedy. Comedy does not translate over cultures. Especially from the US to the UK, or vice-versa. But why? Why do people in America find funny what those in England or Scotland do not?

There are two comedic theories which explore possible reasons for this. The first is Susan Purdies ‘breaking of rules’ theory, and the latter is Andy Medhurst ‘triangle’ or ‘three point’ theory.

Susan Purdie theorises that comedy depends on the breaking of rules of language and behaviour. This idea of breaking rules, completely relies on the culture or society you live in. Purdie explains, for the audience to know the rule, for the audience to notice a break in the rule.

e.g. People in Alaska may not find a joke about Tony Abbott funny.

This is known as cultural specificity, and from this derives adaptation. Adaptation, according to this rule is surely needed so that comedy can suit where it’s being played.

Here is a practical example. Think about why this gif humorous, and how it breaks ‘rules’.


It challenges stereotypes like;
Women’s clothing & colours
Long hair (generally related to women)
Feminine movement
Yet he’s a man!

However, (hypothetically) if this was seen by a culture which views cross-dressing as normal and pink as a manly colour. They would not recognise this rule as being broken.

The second theory, Sigmund Freud denotes that humour could be broken down into three elements.

The teller
The receiver
The ‘butt’ of the joke.

This means that jokes are always aimed to denote someone. Palmer explores the butt of a joke as a method of raising ourselves up in cultural society. ’jokes, told throughout the Western world, conventionally link the butt with the character traits of stupidity or stinginess [in order to create humour].’ (Palmer, 61) Relating back to cultural specificity, since cultural societies are different, the members of society send themselves up in different ways. This means that different cultures will have different ‘butts’ to their jokes, and will find different comedy funnier.

This lecture – although it seemed less academic (due to its subject matter ‘Comedy’) – provided a level of analysis which prompted several questions, and continues to prompt more. These theories have helped me understand how comedy translates into different cultures. I encourage you to explore further, asking questions like: Who is generally the ‘butt’ of the joke is your favourite programs? Is comedy the only genre that needs adaptation to be successful overseas? And are there any other theories that help you understand how comedy works, locally and internationally?

Reference List:

Palmer, Jerry. Taking Humour Seriously, London, New York: Routledge, 1994.

Further Readings.


Mulder, M.P & Nijholt, A. Humour Research: State of the Art, Netherlands, Enschede: TKI-Parlevink Research Group

  • This source explores the Superiority theory, in which states; jokes maintain the established social roles and divisions within a society. They can strengthen roles within the family, within a working environment and everywhere there exists an in-group and out-group. When [ethnic] jokes are concerned, jokers choose groups very similar to theirs as the target of the joke only to focus on the mutual differences and in that way strengthen the established divisions between the two groups. (Mulder and Nijolt 2002: 3)

Turnbull, S (2010) ‘The long tail of mother and son: the transnational career of an Australian situation comedy’. Media International Australia incorporating Culture and Policy, no. 134, pp. 96.

Miller, J.L. (2010) ‘Ugly Betty goes global: Global networks of localized content in the telenovela industry’. Global Media and Communication, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 198-217.

Turnbull, S (2004) ‘Look at Moiye, Kimmie, look at moiye’: Kath and Kim and the Australian comedy of taste’. Media International Australia incorporating Culture and Policy, no. 113, pp. 98 – 109

The Emergence of Hong Kong as a Media Capital and the ‘Clash of Civilisations’

Over the past several weeks, I have been reading other blogs submitted by my classmates, and even blogs from the 2013 BCM111 course. Most of the ones I have read are just addressing the theories presented in the lecture; e.g. Clash of civilisations, cultural essentialism and the definition of media capitals.

Instead of me typing to you the definition of media capitals and clash of civilisations (which you should know if you’re a media student or my tutor), here is a variety of YouTube videos to explain it.
The following video is of Edward Said, as he explains the clash of civilisations, it is the most in depth video and I recommend referencing this one:

Hong Kong media capital definition – “Cairo, and Hong Kong. One might refer to these cities as media capitals, since they represent centres of media activity that have specific logics of their own; ones that do not necessarily correspond to the geography” – Micheal Curtin in ‘Media Capital: Towards the study of spatial flows’ (http://www.sagepub.com/mcdonaldizationstudy5/articles/Globalization_Articles%20PDFs/Curtin.pdf )From this definition we can see that media capitals are centres for different medias, of different cultures, to conglomerate and be distributed.

The lecture this week partly focused on the ‘Clash of Cultures’, and the flaws of this theory. The main flaws were ‘cultural essentialism, (http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/essentialism) and Orientalism (http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/orientalism). However, I will be focusing on the media capital of Hong Kong, and how it disproves these theories.

Michael Curtin in ‘Playing to the World’s Biggest Audience: The Globalization of Chinese Film Industry’[1] 140107020455-run-run-shaw-story-top140107020455-run-run-shaw-story-top
Using Hong Kong and Run Run Shaw as a media capital case study, I’ll run you through the brief reasons why Hong Kong is a media capital. So, a film producer from China named Run Run Shaw, relocated to Hong Kong with the Desire to build a pan-Chinese Mandarin cinema. Although his passion soon changed to television, this would show to be a significant advancement for the Hong Kongs leading broadcaster TBV. With Shaw, came his considerable resources, and as Curtin explores, TBV prosperity was not solely because of this, but largely due to Shaw’s aggressive marketing strategies and his ability to recruit and train creative behaviour. (http://books.google.com.au/books?id=pwmw6_OibiQC&pg=PA271&lpg=PA271&dq=benefits+of+Hong+kong+as+a+media+capital&source=bl&ots=w-7NO4v7fj&sig=Yw0TDLzic9-BZcwhQH5CQKgPPBU&hl=en&sa=X&ei=jpMzVOngKor68QWYx4LYDg&ved=0CCoQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=benefits%20of%20Hong%20kong%20as%20a%20media%20capital&f=false)

This growth in television saw a rise in the genres of drama and Cantopop.

From this growth in television, prompted growth in other Medias in Hong Kong. Curtin continues to explore this, stating that the “Three industries [music, television and movie] appeared to complement one another.”

So if they all work in cohesion, it should strengthen the media capital as a whole right? Yes.

This cohesion of media attributed to the flourishing nature of Hong Kong as a media capital, the embracement of television, and new modes of production, appropriated form film created a better viewing experiences, making the matter produced more appealing internationally. Another positive from having close working media was the sizeable pool of talent which again attributed to Hong Kong’s international appeal.


Financescapes (explore more in my previous post: http://wp.me/p4pl8U-10) also is relevant to this discussion. Hong Kong had all this success because it became an important financial centre for the Chinese. Curtin discussed this as a relevant point to the success of Hong Kong, stating “[this financial centre] provided ready access to capital and other commercial resources [which benefitted the prosperity of HK media].

The increased finance was partly due to the rise in Cinema chains. This generated profit and added to the raising of production budgets and quality of movies in Hong Kong. Furthermore making them more attractive to “Chinese audiences in Taiwan and Southeast Asia. Further profiting Hong Kong.

From this information we can assume that Hong Kong is both western and eastern in culture. Resulting in hybridity among cultures, furthermore leading to the success and growth of Hong Kong as a media capital.

Please leave your comments and feedback below. If you have any questions i would be happy to answer them. Thank you.

Links to Images used:



Further Readings:

Curtin, Michael (2009) ‘Matrix Media’. Television Studies After TV: Understanding Television in the Post-Broadcast Era. Eds Graeme Turner and Jinna Tay. London: Routledge. pp. 9–19.

Thussu, Daya Kishan (2007) Media on the Move: Global Flow and Contra-Flow. London and New York: Routledge.

Moran, Albert (2009) New Flows in Global TV. Bristol and Chicago: Intellect