University of Colorado at Boulder Environment and media advocacy Discussion
Please read carefully and follow directions as it is vital to a good grade for this assignment. Below is the directions and everything you will need. The case studies have been linked please use as many as possible and examples pertaining to the assignment.
This week we will begin to turn theory intro practice though the analysis of environmental media advocacy campaigns as a class. One of the points of doing social science-type analysis all along has been to take this step from critical examination to advocacy oriented action – as the analysis can offer insights into steps for advocacy. Doing so will also help you in designing your Media Advocacy Project which you will brainstorm through this week’s project step assignment. To begin this process, this discussion asks you to draw upon the ideas about environmental communication and advocacy from this week’s core readings and videos to collectively examine what we believe works well and not so well in the case study campaigns and why. In doing so we can help each other to become more skillful environmental advocates while learning from these excellent examples of media-based advocacy.
About the Case | Environmental Media and Advocacy Mashup – Links below to case study
This week’s case study looks at a variety of styles of media advocacy and campaigning, from a variety of different perspectives. This includes op-ed-style articles, advocacy videos, creative arts, and forms of “new” media available online in the past few years. Full media campaigns are composed of smaller items like these that fit into a broader plan of outreach and action – focused on target audiences, timing, and campaign goals. For the forum assignment you are asked to look at two of these in detail. Please consider all of the examples though as understanding these options will help with your Media Advocacy Projects!
As you look, do consider both the content (aka. topic) and medium (aka. form) of these messages. Examining these sources with a critical eye informed by this (and past) week’s reading and videos will offer you insight not only in how to craft your own campaigns but how to become better producers and consumers of quality media as well. Consider what you have been learning throughout the course, including the ideas from the Climate Debate and Critical Media Studies texts as well as the lessons from the Media Literacy video series. In using what you have learned my hope is you will never see a media message quite the same way again. In this way, the aim is for you to become an agent for change, and more than just a subject of someone else’s skillful media message.
Remember the ideas of cultural cognition and motivated reasoning from the Climate Debate book and you will know what I mean!
How to Complete the Assignment
1. Create a new ‘reply’ to the discussion and give it a creative title in your first line based on what you plan to write (hit enter/return so it looks like a title on a line of its own).
2. Craft a post for this discussion responding to the following prompts:
Goal for your Post – Pick two out of four of the example sets from this week’s case study. Using the lists and ideas from this week’s core readings and videos examine these two cases based on the guidelines below.
Submission Length: 3-4+ paragraphs with sources. Reminder! A paragraph is more than just 3 sentences, it more so represents a complete idea, well articulated.
a. For each case example you choose, consider the lists of ideas and concepts as articulated in the videos and readings (in italics in the chapters) for the week. As a core question, how do you see these ideas manifesting in your chosen case examples? As you think and write, consider these questions as well: Can you compare and contrast the items within an example or across the examples? What would you keep, remove, or change about these messages to make them more effective based on the perceived goals? What techniques from the readings and videos are they using? How might these insights help you in your media campaign project efforts?
b. As you examine and write, make sure you consider 1) who you believe the target audience is, 2) what “job” or action the message is trying to get people to do, and 3) how the message is going about accomplishing that aim. Also consider the difference between topic and form of the message and how these manifest in the case examples.
c. Articulate your arguments clearly, the stance you are taking, and why. Think of this like making a convincing speech to a group rather than an assignment for a class. My hope is this prompt will lead to good discussions and debates in our forum!
d. Do your best! This is a challenging though powerful task. Combined with the points that Hoffman makes around targeting a message to the audience, this type of discussion is exactly how we can turn our education towards the practical purposes of galvanizing social change – a topic we will continue to explore next week.
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