Homework for Next Week (1. Begin Interview Assignment and 2. Post a description and link to an interesting news item you are following)

Hi Students:

Thanks for your excellent responses to the podcast profile on Kamala Harris, the Interview with Barack Obama, and the article on Harris’ cover photo in Vogue. Many of you mentioned the “power of the image” (and viral video clip!), the details that brought out the humanity of both subjects, the use of humor, the background research, and clear focus accompanying the pieces. Now it’s your turn to write an entertaining, informative profile on a fellow student. For further details on how to go about this assignment (due in 2-3 weeks), please read the linked PDF.

1). INTERVIEW ASSIGNMENT: Contact your partner this week

I ask that you write out your profile or interview and that you include at least one photograph of your interviewee (and/or one related to his/her interests). Use either the Harris Profile or Obama Interview as a model. Below is a list of whom you will be interviewing. To contact your partner, reply to the introduction he/she posted for the first class assignment. Email me if you need help making contact with your partner: mnoonan@citytech.cuny.edu

Amoussou,Germaine AND Aragon,Alejandra

Burgos,Kelvin AND Ghazy,Khaled

Reyes,Lissette AND Rivera,Kimberly

Navarro,Karen K AND Peluso,Grace

Mcdowell,Clifton AND Naranjo,Erika Gissel

Kane, Aminata AND Santos,Jozelyn I

Almanzar, Olga  AND Taveras, Arisleyda

Finger,Brittany AND Zeron,Ruth

Fares,Farouk Gumia AND Sharmin,Lubna

Consuegra,Pamela AND Cortez,Cristian

Santana,Zahira AND Castro,Matthew

Awada,Jawad AND Beltran,Leticia

Amoussou,Germaine AND Aragon,Alejandra

2). Post Assignment: “What Constitutes the News?” (Post by Sunday night)

This week’s video lecture (watch below) traces the history of how the very definition of “news” has changed over time. Today, “news” can be something as serious as the impeachment trial of Donald Trump or something seemingly “small” such as the sneakers Kamala Harris is wearing. Read the following two articles. One is on Bernie Sanders’ mittens. Here is link to some great memes of Bernie and his Mittens. The other article concerns a woman who put Gorilla Glue in her hair. Here’s the follow-up story. And the story continues: On Her Way to Fame! How are these stories “news”?!?!? Should they be??? As we think about this question, I ask that you post a brief description (and link) to a story you are currently following.

42 Comments

  1. Jozelyn

    It has become so interesting to me how almost anything can pass as “news” today. Overtime, I feel like the news has become more entertainment based, while keeping the informative aspect of it all. When you hear the word “news” your mind can immediately go to topics that relate to world crisis, business events and more. For entrainment, channels such as TMZ and E!News or social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and more provide a new form of latest “news.” I believe “news” in general try to be as entertaining as possible to reach a wider audience, particular those who find the news boring or even depressing to indulge in. News that is entertaining can be just as informative as any other news.
    For instance, the highlight of Biden’s election was Sander’s funky mittens that was seen in multiple memes the following days. For me, I simply thought that Bernie was cold and as an older man, he may not be so in touch with fashion or even care for it. Yet, the article proposed so many hidden meanings that the mittens could stand for. It made me think “Are the simple things in life really just ‘simple’.” As for the woman who used Gorilla Glue for her hair, I have many things to say but to stay professional, I will simply say that it was an action that definitely was not thought out. However, this reckless decision set a warning example for others as well as showed an act of kindness from many viewers. People reached out sharing their sympathy, offering advice and wigs, showing kind interaction amongst thousands. Isn’t that what the news is about? Trying to get society to interact and inform others? I believe so.
    The news I am following is mainly about body positivity. Ever since the pandemic, our mental and physical health may have been a challenge for many and I believe this stems from self-confidence. Nowadays, social media platforms and the fashion world are striving to appreciate the three S’s. Bodies that come in all shapes, sizes and shades. Yet, it is appreciated to a certain extent. In this article a Black model who embraces her size and natural beauty did a photoshoot with a woman who mainly photographs plus size women. After the photoshoot, the images of the Black model, who wore no clothing but was covering her respective parts, were taken down and deemed “inappropriate.”Yet, there were many images that were more revealing on the photographers page and the only difference was that they were white plus size models. It makes you question whether all shapes, sizes and shades will be truly accepted.
    https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2021/feb/10/model-instagram-apologise-nyome-nicholas-williams-alexandra-cameron-best-photograph

    • Mark

      You make so many interesting points about the media today Jozelyn. I like your emphasis on “entertainment” as well as the opportunity for sympathy — certainly important! An excellent final feature assignment for you might be to discuss the history of black and/or female models. Your story link is fascinating and connects a bit to the controversy surrounding model choices that Vogue editor Anna Wintour has made over the last decade.
      Great post!

  2. Alejandra Aragón

    The news has evolved and change throughout time. Usually when I think of the news or something “newsworthy” is something very important and recent that is ongoing and current. This can be bad events such as, murders, protesting, city blackouts, shootouts, or accidents. They can also be good events such as a stimulus check, advertisements, newly found research, the opening of a new museum or train stop. It can be as small as the weather. And it can definitely be heavily based on politics. In this generation I believe more other forms of news have surfaced. News such as memes, celebrity related news, viral videos and any other sort of entertainment with a viral aspect to them. News consists of elements being; proximity, significance, timeliness, prominence and human interest.
    For this week we were assigned to read the Bernie Sanders Mittens and Gorilla Glue Articles.
    The Bernie Sanders Mittens article focused on the significance and meaning behind Bernie’s mittens. It was broken down to five reasonings behind his posture, attire and mittens. This article spoke to me as conspiracies behind these mittens. Throughout reading all these reasonings, about his slouched posture, his blue disposable face mask, his woven ski mittens, and his arms crossed, I couldn’t help but laugh. This made me questions if the article was written for entertainment purposes with its professional use of language and knowledge on political stands and views. Is it news? Im not sure, but it was an definitely an image captured that had definitely gone viral and blew up instantly, gaining a lot of attention and views.
    The Gorilla Glue Article, was based on this woman who had opted out to use Gorilla adhesive spray because she had ran out of her gel. Upon reading the first few sentences, I immediately knew the consequences this woman was going to face. You would think that no one in this world would ever opt out for such product, but theres always someone out there curious enough to do so. Was it news worthy?… I believe it is good that it went viral. I believe it brought much more awareness to not opt out for products that are clearly not meant to be used on yourself. I guess because one person out there was capable of doing it, it doesn’t hurt spreading the warning to others.

    The news article I am following is about the newly found air pollution research in NYC Path and MTA transit. It explains how maybe using a mask should’ve been something we should have been doing long ago. The amount of bacteria found in the air is as dangerous and can be associated to lung illnesses and asthma.
    https://nypost.com/2021/02/10/nyc-subway-has-filthiest-air-of-all-northeast-transit-study/

    • Mark

      Very interesting and thorough reply Alejandra. The range of topics you define as “news” is spot on. The article you attach is also an excellent example of how “news” can be helpful to readers, aimed in particular to their “proximity” as NYC subway riders. Nicely done!

  3. Khaled Ghazy

    In the political climate the news was increasingly getting portrayed as “fake news” where individuals view channels that are primarily news channels such as Fox news, CNN, and CBS is biased and are aimed to influence the viewer. Increasingly news has transformed from breaking news to covering social media stars. News channels are transforming their content to be as entertaining as possible to reach a wider audience. In the modern age of social media facebook, snapchat, and twitter are becoming the go to place for a lot of peoples regarding news. The augnagration of Joe Biden was overshadowed by Bernie Sanders outfit choice and all news media started to take fasaniation. I don’t believe that the coverage of Bernie was appropriate to cover during the augnagration. When Bernie was asked about his fashion he refused to answer and continued to talk about his political views. Just as the woman who glued her hair with super glue, news media started to cover the story not just on their channel but through their social media accounts. A news story I’m following is the drama between FKA twigs and Shia LeBeouf. The reason I’m following this story is because I was a big Shia LeBeouf fan and hearing these stories about him and his abusive past made me view him in a different light. You truly don’t know a person behind the fame and reputation. https://pitchfork.com/news/fka-twigs-discusses-alleged-shia-lebeouf-abuse-in-interview-with-cbs-gayle-king/

    • Mark

      You make some excellent points here Khaled. Your connection of news needing to be “entertainment” to the increase in “fake” news is one to keep following (perhaps for your final feature assignment). We’ll also talk more about this topic in the coming weeks.

  4. Ruthie Zeron

    “What constitutes as news?”

    The media is saturated with a lot of dark news; sometimes, it is necessary to have some lighthearted and funny stories circulating as well. Those were my thoughts when footage of a nonchalant Bernie was televised. It wasn’t until after reading the article “The Meaning of the Mittens: Five Possibilities” that I realized it was so much more than a funny story. There is some legit symbolism there, an expression of “ sartorial dissonance” as Klein says.
    On the other hand, some stories are just straight up silly and baselessly gain traction in our social media driven world. It is hard to believe that a person can gain fame and fortune from having used gorilla glue instead of gel! I think the fact that this person is now famous, says a lot more about us as a society and is a sign of “the times”. We clicked on the story, we contributed to the Go Fund Me account, and we were the force that propelled her to celebritydom.
    As different as these stories seem, they allow us to draw our own conclusions about events going on in the world. We decide what we take away from them and this helps form our worldview.
    Currently, I am following the story of Musk’s latest tech project “Neuralink”. It is a device that would be implanted in the brain and would potentially treat diseases such as dementia. It is in the preliminary testing stages at the moment, but if successful, would be a true testament of symbiosis of AI and humans! Here is a link to the story: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/12/05/elon-musks-neuralink-bold-ideas-hurdles.html#:~:text=%22I%20created%20%5BNeuralink%5D%20specifically,loss%20or%20Dementia%20and%20paralysis.

    • Mark

      Excellent insights on the media Ruth. I particularly liked your well-written opening point:
      “The media is saturated with a lot of dark news; sometimes, it is necessary to have some lighthearted and funny stories circulating as well.” Your link to the Elon Musk story is fascinating look into ever-evolving medical technology — an important topic indeed and highly worth following.

  5. Kimberly

    I think its kind of crazy how certain stories are considered “news” instead of just gossip. Like the fact there is actually someone out there writing about celebrities and what they were wearing yesterday and stuff of that sort. The bernie sanders story I think the journalist was honestly trying to read between lines that didn’t exist. The man was just cold and trying to keep his distance during a pandemic and not trying to party. He was leading by example. As for Gorilla glue girl I was initially following the story only because it kept coming up on my instagram feed and everyone was talking about it, but not because I honestly cared about it. I think it was more of a publicity stunt more than a accident because its common sense. But even if it was an accident I feel like she dragged it for more and more attention and I saw eventually she even got a manager for booking her. It honestly didnt make sense. I think I can see how Bernie’s article could be news minus the looking into the mittens as much but the gorilla glue story to me was just a 15 minutes of fame.

    A story that I’ve been following is https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2021/02/16/biden-i-will-not-forgive-50000-of-student-loans/?sh=4d473c6b176e
    I’ve been following it because I really don’t wanna pay my student loans if I am being taxed my entire life. But also I hate how biden said he cant cancel 50k in debt because “he doesnt have that power” but has the power to fund wars and deportations.

    • Mark

      Excellent points about news being all too often idle “gossip.” Your comment on Biden’s claim to not be able to call off student loans is also right on! An excellent final feature assignment in fact …

  6. PamC

    Bernie Sanders is a political figure that is very outspoken in the community of young people. It is popularities comes from him being so openly critical about his opponents and also about the coworkers he works closely with. Due to Bernie being the prominent political figure he is combines with the context of where he was, at a historical inauguration, I can see why his mittens photo was considered news. In reality, this was just a meme that became wildly popular among all ages. However, afterwards we saw Bernie take his likeness and start selling merchandise. Being that he donated these earnings to Meal on Wheels, it falls directly within his political preaching. I think that it may be considered a comical news story including a prominent political figure.
    Tessica Brown’s story also became a wildly popular meme because it surprised so many people. The story itself was also entertaining. Because there were so many people that donated to help and because the story itself was so unbelievable, it did become a national story. Tessica ended up donating the money herself back to the hospital who helped her. I think if this was the most reported on part of her story then it would be a more serious story. However most people just used the situation for jokes therefor I don’t think this can be classified as a real news story. Although I can see this being reported on by a news channel just to pass the laughs along.
    A story that I was following was the Gamestop stock that Robinhood stopped people from buying. Technically I feel that this is also not a news story but there was a case filed against Robinhood because it was supposed to be a free market for all. Many people were also on the side opposite from the millionaires in which the GameStop Stock surge hurt the most. The trial was actually trending recently so I have been following the story even though I wasn’t necessarily personally involved with the story.
    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/gamestop-robinhood-vlad-tenev-house-hearing-watch-live-stream-today-2021-02-18/

    • Mark

      Very interesting post about the media, especially how both Bernie and Tessica used their surprise fame for good ends. Ultimately, the media is also a window to encourage people to care about others. The Robin Hood story is indeed a fascinating one to follow. Now on the Bitcoin story …. ! Excellent post, Pam.

  7. Leticia Beltran

    Today’s news tends to cover important things but you have to look into some things yourself as we can relay on the news . Sometimes they’re misleading and giving false information so it goes to which one to trust or which one is more reliable. Theirs so many ways for people to find out what new or the news, such as social media which plays a huge role today. Young people look at social media and get their information from there.

    One story that I’m following today is the serial killer on the A train because i have family members who take that train to Brooklyn for work and my boyfriend who lives near there as well. It’s scary to have someone killing on the train , people have to be more safe . When i take the train i usually stay around a group of people because you can never be too sure about your safety.

    • Mark

      Excellent point about our need to be wary about what’s “true” and “not true” in the media today, Leticia. That story about murders on the subway is truly frightening — calling attention to another role the media plays: keeping readers informed in order to try to be safe.

  8. Zahira

    It is interesting now days to see what is considered as “News”. I think that over the past few years there are things that have been put out there that I don’t believe that they should have. For example with this two stories is hard to see as to how they would be consider as news. In Barnie Sanders article they made a great point when they said that on that day there were more impactful/important things going on but what they choose to put out there was Barnie’s Mitten’s. The only way Barnie’s mittens could be considered as “News” is when you think about the many meaning that can be seen behind it depending on someone’s point of view. There was an impact made for many people in the political world and outside of it . When I say impact I mean the surprise they got as people started seeing a “dangerous socialist as “everyone’s lovable grandpa”. Quite honestly in this article there isn’t in need of much explaining I think that the image on display really says it all his posture and how isolated he looks even with so many people around him.
    Also similarly to Tessica Brown who put Gorilla Glue in her hair now this story “news” is really something just seeing the picture being shown you can see all the emotions and the problem at hand. I would consider this news is when it comes to waning people against making the same mistake. But to be honest I don’t think it should be news yes it’s sad that it happened but honestly is not anyone’s fault but hers for using something that obviously is not meant for your hair it’s since it is meant to be permanent. I get her wanting to get help and find a solution to remove it but there are far more important thing goin on in the world that need to be solved and thought/ talked about.
    At the moment this is they story I’m following https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/11/us/fort-worth-wreck.html . This news is very sad and heartbreaking and is quite a miracle that only 6 people dies in an accident of over 100 vehicles.

    • Mark

      I like your analysis of the media here Zahira, especially your point about the silliness of so much news today. Your news link is definitely a better example of more significant news coverage.

  9. Mr.Kelvin

    I believe over time the definition of news has been devalued. This is mainly due to how people may spend time looking at what’s on the headline and see if it interests them. Yes, writers can write about any honest situation that is happening but businesses care more about just how much attention they can get from it. Sometimes the easiest way to try and get more attention to write an article about whatever is currently trendy on the internet. In the case of Bernie’s mittens, the article linked was clearly written to capitalize on the popularity of Bernie since everyone on social media was going absolutely crazy with laughter and wonder at Bernie’s getup. The issue with it is how the writer tried so hard to put in different meanings of why Bernie has that posture and outfit, like he is holding some reserved judgement for what is going on with his outfit and spot away from people or some form of street cred that should be noted, when the reality is that there is no meaning. Bernie is an old man so he can get cold a lot easier than young people and he is most definitely using old clothes that still serve the purpose of keeping him warm during these freezing times. It is amazing how some people can take a simple image and churn out two pages worth of nonsense out of it.
    With the gorilla glue challenge, that is another example of newsletter trying to cash in on a trend. I am not one for challenges like these because these prove to be really harmful in the end and can be really dangerous and should not be worth the attention at all. Still, the articles do fair much better than the Bernie once since they keep track of Tessica Brown’s journey of getting the glue of her hair, noting every unsuccessful attempt she made and even going to the emergency room to get rid of it. The articles even mention people’s interest in updates to the situation and offering possible solutions to deal with the glue. The attention did help her meet a plastic surgeon that was able to successful get rid of it for free and provide additional treatment to keep her hair from falling off. The last article feels it was just made as an additional page of text to let everyone know she is doing much better since that incident, having gotten an agent and selling her own products. Least that kind of stuff is news-worthy, even if the cause is absurdly stupid to begin with.
    As for a story that I am following, I was reading this article https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/18/technology/who-wins-the-online-corner-store.html?emc=confirmation_ot&regi_id=160969602 . It touches on the current struggle that many small business are going through in this pandemic where in-store shopping is not much of an option for people and online shopping becoming a much bigger convenience for many customers. A lot of small businesses are not prepared for going online, not able to pay for a website and handle online orders, or rely on stores like Amazon to sell their goods while paying fees that can be quite costly.

    • Mark

      Good discussion of the the silliness of the news today, Kelvin. Your article link is very interesting and a good example of “quality” news coverage. The topic of how the pandemic will affect to future of businesses (especially in NYC) would make for an excellent final feature assignment by the way.

  10. Farouk

    What Is News?
    We live in an age where just about anything can go viral. Seemingly mundane or obscure stuff that some of us wouldn’t even bat an eye to. Pizza rat, Bernie’s mittens, and Gorilla glue girl to just name a few. Why is it that these stories are more likely to go viral than Trump’s acquittal or the rise in unemployment?
    Well, it’s simple actually. These are “feel-good stories.” Not like a story about a small town that got a new school built. But a funny story that many people can relate to. A story you share with your friends, and then they do the same. That’s why this type of news goes viral. They’re brief, straightforward, and humorous.
    But we need to ask ourselves, are these types of stories news? Well…yes and no. Theoretically they count as news because it’s conveying information to the masses. It doesn’t matter the substance as long as it’s reporting and informing its news. However, it is a concern that these types of stories steal some of the spotlight for far bigger and more important topics. Yes, not all news should be dark and depressing. But if that’s what’s happening, people should know. We can’t try to ignore these issues.
    We need to stand up and fix the problems before they increase.
    The current story I’m following is the Libyan interim government election. Libya is a country that has been ravished by a grueling civil war since 2011. Now that decade has passed, and its future is finally looking promising. This was an election for a new U.N. intermediate government that will take control to help stabilize the country for the time being. In a country with lots of warring factions, this is easier said than done. But the hope is for a fair election with a peaceful transition of power. Only time will tell what the future has in store for Libya.

    https://thehill.com/opinion/international/538860-libyas-new-interim-government-pressed-to-deliver-elections

    • Mark

      Well-written and insightful response Farouk. I particularly like your line:

      But we need to ask ourselves, are these types of stories news? Well…yes and no. Theoretically they count as news because it’s conveying information to the masses. It doesn’t matter the substance as long as it’s reporting and informing its news. However, it is a concern that these types of stories steal some of the spotlight for far bigger and more important topics.

      What ISN’T covered when the media is flooded with “feel-good,” silly topics is of supreme concern, as your story on Libya indicates. It’s amazing in fact that Libya is about to have elections — given the turmoil of the last few years.

  11. brittanyfinger

    It is so crazy to me that anything in this world today can be considered news. One picture of someone or something and it can blow up like crazy. Someone posting or doing something thats funny or weird to other will blow up instantly. News should be consisted on government, health , education, environmental , politics and many others. However sometimes the news is bad because it can be fake news. Many people listen to the news too much and then live in fear. As for “Burnies Mittens” I think it shouldn’t have gone as far as it did, it is nothing that serious to make the news. All the memes and comments on it were truly sad , he is an old man who was just cold. The internet loves to judge and make people feel like they need to dress and act a certain way to “ fit” in. Bernie had no idea that it was something for it to be on the news for he is just keeping his distance during the pandemic just like everyone else should of done. I think the journalist was just trying to make if far , trying to grab the readers attention and to get more out of then it was supposed too. As for the girl with the Gorilla glue I just think it was totally uncalled for. How do you not know or know what should go into your hair? Why would one put gorilla glue in hair , when has anyone ever did that. I honestly think she wanted it for the money and views. Making a gofund page for money and her whole hair removal process was free. Her story was all over the news, snapchat stories and Instagram so it was definitely something to follow. Everyone had their jokes , opinions and whatever else they had to say. I honestly think that it shouldn’t have made the news. There’s more important things going on in the world then what she did . I think its crazy that situations like heres gets put onto the news. A story that I’ve been following for the past year is the tragic death of Kobe Bryant. Kobe was just an inspiration to many including me. I am a huge basketball fan , well just a huge sports im general but his death impacted me like I knew him. I chose to follow this story because I just felt like there was more to the crash , like there was a piece missing that no one knew about. Also the main reason I am so focused on this specific story is so Kobe’s wife Vanessa , their beautiful daughters , and their family and friends to get some sort of closure.
    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.cnn.com/cnn/2021/02/09/us/kobe-bryant-crash-ntsb-investigation-report/index.html

    • Mark

      You raise good points here about the frivolity of so much news today, Brittany. Your link to the Bryant story is a good reminder of the importance role inspiration plays in our own lives.

  12. Aminata Kane

    If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you do read it, you’re misinformed”- Denzel Washington
    The interpretation of that quote that was stated by Denzel Washington was needed. When you don’t read the newspaper, or don’t watch the news you become blind to what going on in society, which can be a good or bad thing. However, when you do watch the news, or read the newspaper constantly, you become misinformed, which is true. The misinformation in news and social media outlets is purposely done because every source has its own biased narrative that has to be run.
    The definition of “news” has changed drastically throughout the decades. With the use of social media, everything has been bombarded, everyone wants to be first, and alot of media outlets lack journalist integrity. The lacking of journalist integrity has caused people to lose their jobs and destroys their character. When the media destroys your character, the idea of having a second or third chance is purposely unseen. The media/news is so powerful that they can brainwash the public, which has happened numerous times. The term fake news is purposely needed in my opinion, because unfortunately, some people within society do not take the time to do research. If something is plastered by a “reliable source” such as CNN, FOX it’s considered true, and that is not always the case. Reliable sources sure as CNN or FOX has a specific political party that they subscribed to, that the viewers watched.

    The term news has expanded. News back in the day was very political, might report on what going on in the environment in the neighborhood. Depending on the topic, news nowadays is now used as a form of entertainment. There are different elements within the news. The Bernie Sanders Mittens wasn’t news, but it was made to make a light joke, to see an old man, to be sitting in the cold and wearing mittens to keep him warm during the inauguration. The Gorilla Glue Woman has made a deplorable action into putting industrial glue in her hair. Her behavior has caused a media frenzy, which made her have 15 mins of fame.

    An article that I am currently reading, is “ How Streetwear’s Willi Smith Forced Fashion To Face The AIDS Crisis” written by Isabelle Hore-Thorburn. This article focuses on Willi Smith who became a streetwear designer before the term streetwear became a term. His designs were a combination between street end and high end. Unfortunately, Willi Smith’s life was cut short, due to having aids during the late 80s.
    https://www.highsnobiety.com/p/willi-smith-aids-fashion-industry/

    • Mark

      Aminata:

      I just love your opening quote(!):

      If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you do read it, you’re misinformed”- Denzel Washington

      Your link to the article on Willi Smith’s life and designs is an excellent example of “important” news. The role that the fashion industry can play to help gain awareness for important issues is a topic worth pursuing (perhaps for a final feature assignment).

  13. Cristian Cortez

    When it comes down to it the news is basically what the anyone can get their hands on. Now you can find more humor and memes like Bernie Mittens and see people doing the extreme like the lady using Gorilla Glue on her hair and it being stuck to the point where she needed to go to the hospital to get it removed, if someone was to read this they would look at her like why put something that was made to get things stuck together with a strong bond would be a good replacement for a hair product. Would I consider it news, not really I feel like there more to lighten the mood around the events going on around the world. I feel like news are supposed to give more informational stuff rather then jokes and humor. Looking back at over the years the news has drastically have gotten downhill where I feel like don’t really talk about the more important stuff anymore and try to avoid or raise issues even further.
    The article that I’m currently looking at is: https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/deep-freeze-subsides-texans-now-face-electricity-bills-10-000-n1258362. This is what I call news since its dealing with a serious topic on how people in Texas are getting charged a huge amount on their electricity bill due to the Storm going on over there. “Typically, the bill is around $125 to $150 a month, he said. But his account has already been charged about $630 this month — and he still owes another $2,600” which is absurd since the city should have a backup plan to help people in these situation or at least not charge them or charge them less on a situation that isn’t there fault and need in order to survive

    • Mark

      You make a great point about how “news” has deteriorated over the years Cristian. The Texas story you linked is an excellent example of authentic news, with lots of important material for Americans to think about : including the consequences of Unregulated capitalism …

  14. Clifton McDowell jr

    To a certain degree I feel the reader themselves is what constitutes something as being “news” or just “gossip”. Someone who does not really follow politics because they feel a lot of it is filled with lies and politicians just trying to get there agenda across may not see those stories as news. For myself though I feel news is anything that gives factual information and not just conspiracies or someones opinion with nothing backing it up. With the memes of bernie sanders and even when pence had a fly on his head, it was covered on so many news sites and social media but that was just humor, no information or “news” given; same can go for the lady and gorilla glue which i followed because that was just ridiculous. Now a days i feel anything can be put into a news source if it will bring traffic, clicks, and views.

    One story that I’ve been following is about the next stimulus checks. This is important to me because I’ve been home from work since February of last year, trying to pay bills and my tuition and our government does not seem to be in a rush to help anyone. Hoping this administration will be better.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2021/02/18/1400-stimulus-checks-what-we-know-about-how-soon-they-could-arrive.html

    • Mark

      You raise a super important point about the failure of media outlets to provide very much “real” news nowadays. Your link to updates about Stimulus Checks is a great example of an important story that really matters to so many Americans . This is definitely real news. At the same time, just getting Biden elected was an important achievement, as the Republicans would not have passed another Stimulus Bill. Perhaps the “liberal” media helped in this way. Excellent post.

  15. Karen K. Navarro

    News of any kind used to be delivered to the people through newspapers from multiple newspaper companies and would consist mostly of sports, politics, and stocks. Nowadays, we receive news directly from our phones through social media outlets. Twitter being perfect; has an explore tab where the top news can consist of anything and everything that draws in the public eye. However, news websites post articles that can range from the latest political scandals all the way to Bernie Sander’s mittens becoming a meme and symbolic. The article written by Naomi Klein on the website, “The Intercept_” goes in depth with the symbolic reasoning behind Sander’s mittens and how it became such a big deal all over social media. Another piece of news that’s out there is Tessica Brown who used Gorilla Glue as a substitute for hairspray. Marie Fazio wrote an article, “The New York Times” covering the whole story as it unfolded and detailing how supporters of Ms. Brown was giving her advice and also enticing her to release more video footage about her dilemma. Considering how these two stories are different from each other, they still very much constitute news. Not only do these two articles do different things in regards to what they are conveying, people today are more vocal about giving their opinion on a topic they can relate too. Especially since we live in a society where we now post what happens on our day to day on the internet.
    A story that I am currently following surrounds college students who may be eligible to receive an $1,800 stimulus check payment. The article written by Mackenzie Sigalos on the “CNBC” website, follows up on how congress reached a deal on a new $900 billion coronavirus relief package. Within this relief package, college students like myself may be eligible to qualify to receive up to $1,800 in relief money.
    Link: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/12/20/second-stimulus-check-college-kids-eligible-for-covid-relief-payments.html

    • Mark

      Well-stated points Karen. I particularly like your media analysis in the line:

      News of any kind used to be delivered to the people through newspapers from multiple newspaper companies and would consist mostly of sports, politics, and stocks. Nowadays, we receive news directly from our phones through social media outlets. Twitter IS a perfect EXAMPLE; IT has an explore tab where the top news can consist of anything and everything that draws in the public eye.

      Your link to the article about stimulus checks to students like you is a perfect example of News that Really matters!

  16. Erika Gissel Naranjo

    The concept of “news” is now so distornionated between actual news and gossip and entertainment that almost nothing can and is being taken seriously. The credibility of these news outlets are also now compromised. I love that every week you add videos and or things that are currently trending and allows this class to be so engaging. I loved the bernie sanders and his gloves fiasco and a fun fact is that after he went viral he made and sold out some merchandise with his face on it and donated all funds. For me the traditional news is definitely things worthy of local attention like the weather, politics, murders and so forth. When it came to the lady with the gorilla glue I don’t consider it news since I first heard of it on social media and it is not news worthy for me I quite frankly found it ridicuouls.

    The news article I am following is the constant development in the antics of Texas mayor Ted Cruz.

    https://people.com/politics/ted-cruz-hands-out-water-in-texas-after-mexico-trip-backlash/

    • Mark

      Thanks for your interesting post and positive comments, Erika. Yes, the Cruz story is at once entertaining, sad, and significant. How do folks like these get elected??? Now that’s the big question — one that certainly relates to how well (or how badly) the media is doing, particularly when it comes to covering the political scene.

  17. Lubna Sharmin

    Education is essential in our life to move forward in life. Not everyone can effort it; these days, education became so expensive that many people are affected by that, and some people are brave to take out the load, and later it becomes so hard for them to pay off that loan due to many reasons. That’s why nowadays student load has been a preeminent problem in our society. I was following the news of $50,000 student debt forgiveness. According to that article, Mr. Biden is trying his best to forgive many student loans. Also, he used his power to cancel almost 80 percent of the student debt by executive authority run up by some 36 million borrowers. Besides, the article also mentions how the pandemic affected millions of low-income people.

    “Mr. Biden, already wrangling with Republicans over his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief proposal, has thrown his support behind legislation calling for $10,000 in relief.”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/04/us/schumer-democrats-student-loan-forgiveness.html

    • Mark

      Your point about Education being so important in our society is a great one Lubna. Yes, it’s so crucial for our society to 1) make sure students don’t have excessive debt and 2) are successful in their studies — even during a pandemic. The media also has potential to be a Great Educator and should spend much more time on this particular issue.

  18. jawad awada

    In today’s world the term “news” is something that depending on your views can be defined differently by many people. We as individuals may say something so none worthy of any attention yet it will be considered news when in reality there are much bigger problems happening in the world we live in that need more attention. Whenever the word “news” came up I usually had the perception that something extremely important just happened somewhere in the world and needs to be something of an awareness to us as individuals.

    When it comes to the Bernie Sanders story it is honestly insane to believe that something like that made the news. All I saw was a cold politician trying to stay warm in that freezing weather and after it made the news it just makes you realize that anything at this point would be considered “news”.

    There are a few stories that i’m currently following at the moment but one that i feel like is very interesting is the rise in cryptocurrency. Around three weeks ago an emerging cryptocurrency known as dogecoin has become highly touted of late and it’s stock rise has gone up. It was basically created as a meme and nothing serious was supposed to come out of it and recently it has been going up. One of the reasons it has been rising is thanks to the tweets sent out by Elon Musk. Along with dogecoin, bitcoin has been increasing at an insane rate (again thanks to Elon Musk) and it is definitely a story that I have been keeping an eye on because there are a lot of good things that can come out of it if these cryptocurrencies keep rising the way they are.

    • Mark

      Excellent post Jawad. That cryptocurrency story is one worth following. There’s a lot to learn about how “money” works in the world and how bitcoin may shake our notions of what “money” is and might be in the future.

  19. Germaine

    Today, “news” is something serious is about since the beginning of the pandemic everybody was talked, harassment, and violence against Asian people even me I complain about it because I remember when I came to u.s and when people hear that you came from Africa they star call you by any name that they want to call you because at that time Ebola virus was happening in Africa but that is the reason for me to say COVID-19 came from Asian because the COVID-19 can happen everywhere around the world. According to NYPD data, 2020 saw hate crimes targeting Asian communities jump 1,900 per cent in New York City. which was formed in response to the rise in racial violence says that it received more than 2,800 accounts of anti-Asian hate between March 19 and December 31 last year. “In San Francisco, an 84-year-old immigrant from Thailand died after being violently shoved to the ground during his morning walk by a 19-year-old man. In nearby Oakland’s Chinatown, police said a man pushed three unsuspecting people, injuring a 91-year-old man, a 60-year-old man and a 55-year-old woman. A 64-year-old woman was robbed outside a Vietnamese market in San Jose, California.” Asian are not a Virus so we need to love and unity each other no matter what is happening. #Stop Asian Hate #Asianlivesmatter.
    I like how Mayor de Blasio says Asian Hate Crime Task Force working to combat slew of bias crimes in NYC.
    https://abc7ny.com/queens-hate-crimes-asian-americans/10364245/

  20. Lissette Reyes

    The news comes in different forms. On TV, newspapers, and digitally on our phones. When I think of news, I think of politics, world problems, stocks, crime, and even the weather. So why is something like Bernie’s Sanders mittens and Gorilla glue girl relevant? Before this assignment, I wasn’t aware that Bernie Sanders became a meme or that a girl put gorilla glue on her hair and became viral. For people like me that don’t have social media, articles like these keep us informed and up to date on events trending on social media.

    For Bernie Sanders, I just see him bundled up during a cold day and trying to keep a distance from others. In the gorilla glue girl article, I would understand why something like that would be news. The woman made a mistake and asked for help on social media, in a way it’s informative because this gives people an insight into what this woman is going through and that you shouldn’t put gorilla glue on your hair under any circumstances.

    An article I’ve been following is https://apple.news/AsbnzoLlYTxK4tujaM2GGtQ
    Which is an article based on the rescuing of sea turtles in the Gulf of Mexico. Due to the low temperatures Texas is facing, it’s freezing up the Gulf of Mexico, and it’s home to thousands of sea turtles.

    • Mark

      Great response Lissette. I loved that story about the turtles. So interesting. It also shows the best of how humans can be.

  21. Matthew

    Anything can be considered as “News” nowadays. If you search up on google “What is news?” you will get a definition from the dictionary that states the definition of news is “newly received or noteworthy information, especially about recent or important events.” This is why anything can be considered news nowadays. The “Gorilla Glue Girl” put glue on her hair thinking that it would be a good substitution for hairspray, when she found out that was not the case she documented it on social media, because of this many people became interested in what would happen next and wanted updates although this is not important or necessary for people to really know, people are curious and want to know more which is why the woman became so popular in such little time. The news channel simply lets people know what is going on in the world and what people are so interested in.
    The weather forecast is on the news because people care and want to know what the weather is going to be like for the day and for the week. Stock is on the news for those who are interested in stock. Most people have many things that interest them in this world which are why News channels and Papers, and even social media releases this information to the public. So anything that is being released to the public can be considered “News” as long as people are interested in it.

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