Category Archives: media

How to Be Media Literate

By: Nina Badalementi

Doesn’t being literate mean you’re media literate?? Well, the answer is no… Being media literate is so much more than reading and comprehending content. It is distinguishing between true news and “fake news”, understanding credible sources of information, and understanding different perspectives of a story and learning to expand your own perspective. If we take the information we get from media as it is we are at the disposal of the messenger it came from. It is up to us to take a step further and go beyond the face front of the media in order to be truly intelligent in this age of media we live in.

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Source: mindomo.com

In order to be media literate, we must have 5 different knowledge structures. A knowledge structure is not just knowing information, it is an organized structure of significant information on a given topic.

The first area of knowledge structure is media effects – this is all about knowing the effects of media on people, on society, on the world and so on.

The second is media content – this ranges from what goes into creating media to the various genres of it to the process of how it is set up and formed.

The third area is media industries – this consists of the business and corporations that create media, those who own the media, how it is written, who determines the content and how, as well as how the media industry functions.

The fourth is of the real world – this means we need to go out into the real world and experience things in order to have real knowledge of them versus just reading or watching videos on them.

The fifth and last knowledge structure area needed is self – it seems as though everyone must already have this one down, however, this is about much more than “knowing yourself”. It is an active pursuit of understanding how you work and think and the perspective that it gives you. This knowledge structure may be the most difficult one to master. It also may be the most important.

NinaMaria is a senior double majoring in Communication and Electronic Media and minoring in Marketing. She is serving her first year on the EMU PRSSA E-Board as Vice President of External Relations. She hopes to find a career in Media that combines her interest in broadcasting and her passion for people. She also hopes to work in a big city one day. Contact NinaMaria through her email nbadalam@emich.edu.
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How To Act During A Crisis

By Michael Doute

We all saw what recently happened with H&M recently, but in case you may have forgotten (which is easy to do when there’s a new controversy every hour), I’ll summarize what happened. H&M was selling hoodies for kids that were jungle/exploration themed, and they decided to use a black child to model the “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle” hoodie. Nice.  The internet responded pretty much how you would think and all of social media collectively bombarded H&M for being tone deaf or downright racist. Since then, H&M has apologized and no longer sells the hoodie in question and the mother of the boy who originally modeled it shared her thoughts on the controversy. Most recently, H&M closed all 17 of their stores in South Africa in response to violent protests.

It’s mind blowing that companies continue to pump out such controversial ads, especially after Dove’s most recent shortcoming. Now, it is neither my intent nor my place to discuss whether or not H&M or this particular photo is racist. What I want to do is offer a suggestion to people that might help them avoid making similar mistakes as H&M: practice diversity.

This seems to be a pretty polarizing controversy online, as some people are defending H&M while others are blasting them. However, two things are for certain: this is a crisis, and it has negatively impacted business. All that it would have taken to prevent this crisis, or others like it, is some diversity of experience at the creative level. In whatever room this campaign was dreamt up, there was either a lack of diversity or not all people were given equal voices.

To wrap it up, this wasn’t an effort to say that H&M is or isn’t racist. This wasn’t even to say that this ad was or wasn’t racist, but was instead to suggest that companies need to invest more time and effort into ensuring that their creative and management teams are diverse in experience. If not, mistakes and missteps like these will continue to happen and continue to hurt business.saw what recently happened with H&M recently, but in case you may have forgotten (which is easy to do when there’s a new controversy every hour), I’ll summarize what happened. H&M was selling hoodies for kids that were jungle/exploration themed, and they decided to use a black child to model the “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle” hoodie. Nice.  The internet responded pretty much how you would think and all of social media collectively bombarded H&M for being tone deaf or downright racist. Since then, H&M has apologized and no longer sells the hoodie in question and the mother of the boy who originally modeled it shared her thoughts on the controversy. Most recently, H&M closed all 17 of their stores in South Africa in response to violent protests.

It’s mind blowing that companies continue to pump out such controversial ads, especially after Dove’s most recent shortcoming. Now, it is neither my intent nor my place to discuss whether or not H&M or this particular photo is racist. What I want to do is offer a suggestion to people that might help them avoid making similar mistakes as H&M: practice diversity.

This seems to be a pretty polarizing controversy online, as some people are defending H&M while others are blasting them. However, two things are for certain: this is a crisis, and it has negatively impacted business. All that it would have taken to prevent this crisis, or others like it, is some diversity of experience at the creative level. In whatever room this campaign was dreamt up, there was either a lack of diversity or not all people were given equal voices.

To wrap it up, this wasn’t an effort to say that H&M is or isn’t racist. This wasn’t even to say that this ad was or wasn’t racist, but was instead to suggest that companies need to invest more time and effort into ensuring that their creative and management teams are diverse in experience. If not, mistakes and missteps like these will continue to happen and continue to hurt business.

Michael Doute is a senior majoring in public relations. He is currently the VP of Professional Development for the PRSSA organization at EMU. Mike’s passion is with storytelling, and he hopes to end up working for a company that allows him to be creative.

Basics of Media Relations: The Bread & Butter of PR

By: Abby Cousineau

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The role of a PR practitioner has changed so much over the years, but one responsibility that has always remained ours is media relations. Media relations is the “bread and butter” of PR and has been our specialty since the days of Edward Bernays. While our jobs have certainly evolved to include various responsibilities associated with social media, marketing and advertising, we are still the ones responsible for earning space in the media.

Since media relations is so vital, we wanted to learn more, and we brought in an expert to teach us. Last month, Chris Austin, senior account executive at Identity Public Relations, ran a workshop about media relations for us. We learned about what media relations is and the role of the PR practitioner in the process. Here are the key highlights from Chris’ workshop:

The media room is shrinking every day. There is less money and reporters have more work to do than they did in the past. Reporters rely on media relations specialists to provide accurate and interesting information and story ideas.

While social efforts often grab most the attention today, the media is still important. The media provides thee important things to clients:

  1. Visibility/awareness
  2. Credibility
  3. Relationships

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Many different types of media coverage exist. Each client is different and may require unique media coverage to tell their story. You can learn more about the different types of coverage here. Some examples include:

  • Bylined column
  • Expert Source
  • Executive or company profile
  • In-studio TV or radio guest
  • On-site TV guest
  • Brief/press release pick-up

Pitching is how we give reporters story ideas. Pitching is usually done through email and is concise, interesting and informative. Chris offered the following tips for what the media looks for in a pitch:

  • Newsworthy content
  • Interesting to the reporter
  • A story their readers will want to read
  • Provides useful information
  • A story that can be written by their deadline
  • A story that applies to a broad spectrum of readers, listeners or viewers

And finally, he summarized what the news actually is:

  • Timely
  • Relevant
  • Useful/impactful
  • Controversial
  • Unusual

Are you interested in media relations? Did you think this summary was helpful? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Abby Cousineau is a senior at EMU majoring in public relations and minoring in graphic design and marketing. She is currently serving as president of EMU PRSSA and is excited to be leading such a creative and dedicated group of individuals. You can usually find Abby outside anytime the weather is nice or otherwise spending her time behind a computer screen, working on one of her design projects. Connect with Abby on Instagram @abcattt.

The Five Types of Media Coverage you Need to Know

By Nicole Raymond

At a recent EMU PRSSA meeting, we had guest speaker, Chris Austin from Identity PR speak to our chapter about media relations. Among a plethora of vital information to remember when approaching media relations, Chris defined the six different types of media coverage you can score for your company or clients.

1. Bylined column: A column anywhere from 500 to 2,000 words but generally between 800 and 1,000 words. This type of column is written by the public relations professional after they interview their client to gather information. The public relations expert then writes a draft of the byline and the client reviews and makes edits to the document. The PR professional then sends the byline to publications with the client’s name attached.

Ask an Expert

Source: https://thewritelife.com/find-an-expert-source-for-your-next-article/

2.  Expert Source: A reporter interviews your client and uses select quotes to accompany a story. For example, if a reporter is doing a story on cybersecurity and you have a client who is an expert in the cybersecurity field, you can connect the two and the reporter will interview and use the quotes from your client in their story.

3.  Executive/Company Profile: This type of media coverage is just what it sounds like, it is a piece written on an executive in the company or about the company itself. A profile piece is reporter driven, and they are placed in trade publications.

studio_sm

Source: http://www.library.fordham.edu/itservices/videostudio.html

4.  In-Studio TV/Radio Guest: This piece of coverage consists of an interview with an anchor on television or radio. These types of segments can be live or taped, and television segments use heavy visual aspects. The goal of this media coverage is to entertain audiences.

5.  Brief/Press Release: One of the traditional media coverages is a brief or a press release. This type of media coverage is a way to get client news out. It is written by a public relations professional and sent out to media sources to cover the story.

Every organization has a story to be told, and you can use one of these six types of media coverage to help share that story with the organization’s audience!

Nicole Raymond graduated from EMU in 2017 with a Bachelor’s in Public Relations and served as PRSSA’s VP of External Relations from 2016 to 2017. Raymond is currently a graduate student in the IMC program here at Eastern.