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Media Meet 2020 - Pre Conference Newsletter

Published by medialab, 2020-08-27 09:15:41

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THE SPECTACKLE Media Meet-Annual Media Conference PRE- MEDIA MEET NEWSLETTER Published by Department of Media Studies, Christ (Deemed to be University) 27-29 August 2020 Private Circulation Always Read Between the WORKSHOPS Lines Always Read Between the A Workshop on Media Literacy- A Guide to Survive Information Overload Lines Srimoyee Biswas Over the course of the presentation an intro -Srimoyee Biswas 5JOUH ductory idea of the term ‘media literacy’ was elaborated upon.It was also highlighted that Transcending the Walls of The Department of Media Studies at one couldn’t understand or evaluate the need a Classroom: PARI CHRIST(Deemed to be University) held its for media in isolation instead, revenue mod- Education first pre-conference workshop on “Media Lit- els built around advertising were necessary to eracy - A Guide to Survive Information Over- understand how the industry as a whole func- -Shruthi R Bharadwaj load” on 25th July 2020. This was the first in the tioned. Taking a standard definition of media and Krupaharini M series of events coming under Media Meet, the literacy, various terms like ‘access’, ‘analyse’, annual flagship event of the department. ‘evaluate’ and ‘create’ were elaborated upon, Pandemic - A Parallel with relevant examples which one might come Threat to Cyber Security across in the news platforms. -Sai Snehha N Photo courtesy: Abijith RJ Taking up events which stood out, its presen- tation by the media were analysed where the Podcasting: Creation of an Convened by Professor Joel M Jacob, the vir- speaker specifically mentioned that any agen- Intimate Experience tual workshop began with the introduction to cy must not resolve to ‘theatrics’ to pull the the event and the speaker, Dr Kailash Koushik. attention of the audience towards a particular - Aiswarya N A Media Studies faculty at the Hosur Road incident. After the session was concluded, the Campus, he is involved in various facets of aca- virtual floor was open to questions for the au- Digital Marketing: The demia. His area of interests is media labour and dience. Several questions regarding the preva- Future of Small Business the critical political economy of the media. He lence of media, censorship, bias and regulation is currently working on a project where he is were raised. -Christina Tom Jose developing a book on “Media and Democracy”. Some of the key takeaways from the question The audience consisted of parents of the stu- and answer session was the fact that the media Reporting Cybercrime dents studying at CHRIST.The workshop was should act as a ‘voice for the voiceless’ and the Demands Heightened planned to undertake the concept of media lit- introduction of newer regulations should be eracy and transform it into a movement by in- in place for quality reporting. After the vote of Media Literacy volving parents who are major stakeholders in thanks, a brief preview of the upcoming session society. Elaborating on the current pandemic was highlighted and the audience was encour- -Sai Snehha N AND Sathya N and the infodemic, the need for media literacy aged to participate in the upcoming session and issues regarding the same was taken into which shall be on the theme of ‘cybersecurity’. Understanding Game account. Design, One Game at a “Our understanding of the world depends “ on the media we are consuming’’ says Dr Kou- Time shik while explaining how important it is for Our understanding of the world any individual consuming media to be aware of depends on the media we are -Divina Ann Philipose the existing structures which shape their per- ceptions. consuming Growing Prominence of Advertisements in the ” New Normal -Dr Kailash Koushik -Varsha Manoj Nair

Transcending the Walls of a Classroom: PARI Education A Workshop on Media Literacy for School Teachers – Delving Into the Intricacies of News Coverage Shruthi R Bharadwaj and Krupaharini M Our attention towards rural India is intrigued only nomics. when there are barbaric incidents. She challenged Ms. David cited examples from the students’ project T3 JPEng stereotypes about rural life by sharing the story of that was published online by PARI. She also elab- he Department of Media Studies at CHRIST a woman, from PARI’s Faces Project, who said, “I orated how their ground reporting was a fruitful (Deemed to be University) conducted its sec- want to teach my sons to never treat women the way experience for them. It allowed them to empathise ond pre-conference workshop as a part of the an- I was treated.” This contradicts the notion that rural with and meet people whom they otherwise would nual Media Meet on “Media Literacy for School women have backward stances about gender equal- not have met. Teachers” in collaboration with People’s Archive ity. Enhancement in the application of learning along Rural India (PARI) on 30th July 2020. Priti said, “These biased views are the result of our with media literacy could be observed as they ques- lack of awareness and interest in their everyday tioned and understood that reality is beyond what life”.The contingency of media literacy depends on is covered by mainstream media. In conclusion, she teachers since they hold a position of authority to shared information about the recent launch of PARI challenge these notions. PARI links education to Education, which could aid teachers and schools to collaborate with PARI. Consisting of around 150 teachers, the workshop “ was convened by Dr. Kailash Koushik, a faculty of the Media Studies Department. He outlined that the We must ask ourselves if I am not getting purpose of the workshop was to interact with the news about 800 million people who live stakeholders and impart media education. in rural India in the regular news media, This was followed by Professor Alex Joseph, who spoke about the need for incorporation of media lit- then am I insufficiently informed? eracy in school and college syllabus. He introduced the speaker, Priti David, the Education Editor of ” PARI, who has held various credentials as a journal- ist in The Economic Times, BBC and, CNBC along - Priti David, Education Editor (PARI) with several teaching jobs. Questioning the cov- erage of news about rural India, Priti mooted the real life stories that can be used to teach more than general tendency to unilaterally believe news from what is seen or believed to be true. mainstream outlets as the ultimate truth. Using PARI’s illustrations, maps, video clips, and stories as teaching tools render great learning exer- cises. Each story provides an interdisciplinary view of several subjects such as history, science, and eco- Pandemic - A Parallel Threat to Cyber Security A Workshop on Media Literacy and Cyber Security for Parents Sai Snehha N vulnerable to online predators through online The virtual platform was then open for the par- gaming, chat groups and phishing attempts. ents and the participants for questions. Inter- M3JOUH “Being victims of cybercrime can have a signif- esting questions were answered about the dark edia Meet 2020, the academic flagship icant impact on our behaviour and work”, said web, cyberbullying, privacy policies, and app event of the Department of Media Stud- Dayananda, permissions. ies, CHRIST (Deemed to be University) hosted the second part of its pre-conference workshop for parents of the students of the University on August 1, 2020. B. Dayananda, the Additional He also elaborated on the cybercrimes targeted The workshop gave the audience clarity on cy- Director General of Police, Economic Offenc- towards children and teenagers while explain- bercrimes and the roles that parents, police, es, CID, Bengaluru, addressed the audience on ing the downside of online exploitation forces and the government should play on ensuring the topic “Cyber Security.” that may result in drastic behavioural chang- cybersecurity. This Media Meet session proved The session aimed at educating the parents and es. He also provided the participants of the to be highly relevant and educated the specta- the participants on the cybercrimes committed workshop with possible scenarios for the list tors on the importance of media literacy in on- during the time of this pandemic .The current of cybercrimes that target children that include line platforms. lockdown situation has encouraged people to hacking, identity theft, child pornography, cy- spend more time online, making youngsters berstalking, cyberbullying, defamation, online “ child trafficking, online extortion and violation of privacy. There is a need to educate the society regarding The speaker gave insights to the parents on the increasing trend of cybercrimes. There is a what can be done about cybercrimes, how to lot of awareness but there is still a gap. Nor- ensure cybersecurity, parental controls and mally in cybercrimes, police are behind and are maintaining device cyber hygiene. He provid- always trying to catch up with them because the ed the steps that one must follow to report cy- criminals use a lot of innovative ideas and a lot bercrimes and also created awareness about the national cybercrime reporting portal of ingenuity is involved. ( ” B. Dayananda, ADGP, CID, Bengaluru

Podcasting: Creation of an Intimate Experience Aiswarya N A Workshop on the Art of Podcasting with Karthik Nagaraj T3MAhMeCSArt of Podcasting: Telling Stories in casters and technology were also discussed. to podcasts is an intimate experience. Natural Sound’, with Karthik Nagaraj,that took He also spoke about podcasting in the context sounds add sensory layers into it and elevate place on August 5th 2020 marked the com- of journalism. From the history of podcasting the show,” he said. mencement of the series of workshops for stu- to its status in contemporary times, he detailed The workshop was more of an interactive dents as a part of Media Meet, an initiative by various aspects. While highlighting the emerg- session, where the virtual stage was open for the Department of Media Studies of CHRIST ing technological innovations, he said that any questions and queries from the audience. (Deemed to be University). rather than listening to podcasts, more people While answering the questions from his per- are hosting it. The accessibility of the content sonal experience, he provided a learning expe- and commercial viability of podcasts was put rience for the students. into focus. The resource person focused on how podcast- The different perceptions and point of views ing in India helped some people to open up from the side of the host and the listener of a about their relationships and supported the podcast were widely discussed. LGBTQ+ community. The workshop ended with a question-answer session and the vote of “ thanks. The host of the Filter Koffee podcast and the If you are not proud of your podcast, others are not going Chief Content Officer for Wavemaker, Karthik to be. If you don’t find your episode interesting, no one else Nagaraj is also a screenwriter and an indepen- dent film-maker. Apart from this, he is a visiting will. faculty across various business schools as well. “Having an opinion is the major prerequisite ” while hosting a podcast,” Karthik said while he stressed about the necessities and qualities one -Karthik Nagaraj should have to host a podcast. Various other aspects like creativity, different types of pod- Rather than defining the idea theoretically, he posed examples of a few great podcasts, sug- gested self-publishing platforms and put forth ideas for promoting their shows. “Listening Digital Marketing: The Future of Small Business A Workshop on Digital Marketing for E-Business Christina Tom Jose ventures and give them insights on how to online, especially for service providers. The market the same through digital means. discussion pertained to all major social me- A3MAMwCoSrkshop on Digital Marketing was con- The speaker focused mainly on how digital dia channels, including Facebook, Instagram, ducted on 7 August, 2020 as a part of Me- marketing helps businesses generate huge rev- LinkedIn, and Tiktok, among others. dia Meet 2020. The workshop was conduct- enue online, with special emphasis on startups The workshop also included a lively interac- ed by leading digital marketing expert Faisal and small businesses. tive session in which students were able to get Zia Anwer. Besides being the co-founder of their queries addressed. As the trend of online e-commerce marketing agency Brandslane, “ shopping has furthered due to the pandemic, Anwer is also an enthusiastic creator. it is important for the content creators to deci- “You need to make sure that your content is contex- pher the digital usage patterns. The art of han- tual to the platform you are advertising on. Products dling various social media handles and their advertised on Tik-Tok must not be boring. Products marketing nuances were the key takeaways for the audience. advertised on Instagram must be colourful.” ”-Faisal Zia Anwer The topics discussed focused mainly on digital He also talked about the role of creative ad- marketing practices for e-businesses and fu- vertising and the best ways to implement paid ture entrepreneurship, with a special empha- advertising. sis on best practices during the COVID-19 “It is important to know the intent of peo- situation. ple hanging out on a particular platform. You One of the goals of the workshop was to en- need to make sure that your creative is con- courage students to take up entrepreneurial textual to the platform,” he said. He also threw light on the multiple ways of acquiring clients

Reporting Cybercrime Demands BOIS LOCKER ROOM ISSUE Heightened Media Literacy A Workshop on Cybercrime and its Reportage This was a very recent case which went viral in May 2020, after screenshots of a particu- Sai Snehha N, 3JOUH etc., were discussed in detail. She briefly explained lar chat group on Instagram was leaked. The Sathya N, 3MAMCS the types of cybercrimes and the laws which pros- members of the group were teenage boys ecute them. The topic of ‘Gender and Cybercrime’ from in Delhi, who shared inappropriate con- With the premise of ‘Media Literacy’, the work- was covered, where Ms. Paresh Kumar addressed tent triggering sexual violence against minor shop on “Cybercrime and its Reportage” cybercrimes against children, revenge porn, and girls, including their photographs.The issue was conducted on August 8, 2020. It was the third how women are subjected to online harassment was taken up by various investigating agen- exclusive workshop for students, as a part of Media but refrain from reporting them. cies, which subsequently involved the Delhi Meet 2020. The speaker was Manasi Paresh Kumar, The session subsequently became interactive with Police and the Cybercrime Bureau. The boys the Engagement Editor at Bangalore Citizen Mat- the participation of the audience in response to were discovered and some of them were tak- ters. She is well known for her long standing career their understanding of cybercrime-related news. en into police custody. This incident is alarm- of thirteen years, involving herself in various facets The students were divided into various teams ing for various reasons, one of them being the of investigative journalism. through a break up session for thirty minutes where involvement of teenagers in such crimes. This they were given separate case studies to discuss in also instigated many people on social media, detail followed by a presentation.The case studies who raised their voices against such untoward were presented as hard news reports involving var- ious formats of multimedia. COSMOS BANK HACK In the fast-moving world with changing media “Don’t editorialise content while reporting facts” Cosmos Bank, a bank based in Pune, was on trends, it is essential to be informed and equipped the resource person said while distinguishing the the headlines during August 2018, when there to cope with the downsides of technological ad- difference between editorials, opinions and hard was a fraudulent transfer of around 94 crores vancements. The four hour long workshop com- news reporting. Through this workshop, students from different accounts in the bank via dif- menced with an introduction of cybercrime by the who are aspiring journalists actively involved ferent ATMs within and outside India. It was speaker, who went on to explain the scope of cy- themselves and enriched their knowledge and a nerve-wracking cyber crime, where a mal- bercrime in everyday context. She also threw light skills pertaining to the reportage of cybercrimes. ware was used and several debit card holders’ on some disturbing facts on cybercrimes. accounts were hacked. The whole attack was Various cybercrime incidents like the Bois Lock- “ a mere three-day activity where such a huge er room case, UIDAI Aadhar data breach, scams amount of money was looted. This was one on e-commerce platforms, Cosmos Bank hacking, In the next five years, 90% of the crimes com- of the biggest cyber crimes across the world, mitted will have a digital footprint which sheds light on the need for everyone to acquire enough knowledge about cybersecu- ”-Manasi Paresh Kumar rity. Understanding Game Design, One Game at a Time A workshop on the study of video games Divina Ann Philipose Another field that the workshop explored was education. Through the ex- ample of a video game that teaches players the basics of machine learning, G1MACMamS e design is the starting juncture to understanding games,” said the host explained the role of video games in the education sector. The Poornima Seetharaman, host of the workshop titled ‘The Study of host also elaborated on the role and scope of video game journalism in Video Games’ held on August 14 as a part of Media Meet 2020. A member India. Ms. Seetharaman explained how game reviews, breaking down and of the gaming industry since 2006, Poornima Seetharaman is currently a deconstructing the game can be covered under the umbrella of video game lead game designer at Zynga. From AR to casual games, she has worked journalism. in a wide variety of gaming genres. The resource person has worked with some of the biggest names in the Indian gaming industry and co-founded “ Pinaka Interactive (a game design studio) and NammaLore Entertainment (a game development studio). Video games are a source of entertainment, but personally I feel like they can be something more ”-Poornima Seetharaman The workshop was aimed at helping participants understand the world of The workshop ended with a story-telling activity where participants used gaming better. The host broke down various aspects of game design like cues from virtual dice cubes to create a story. Each participant used a die to the stages of game design, narrative technique, psychological aspects that narrate one part of the story and the next person carried it forward. affect player behaviour and storytelling in gaming. One of the two characters created by the participants did not make it until The workshop further explored hidden mechanics in gaming and how de- the end of the story and was killed mid-way. This workshop proved to be velopers manipulate the flawed psyches and probabilities while developing fruitful for all the gaming enthusiasts and helped them understand the nu- games. ances of video game designing.

Growing Prominence of Advertisements in the New Normal A Workshop on Advertisement Psychology with Prakash Raghupathi Varsha Manoj Nair The activity-based workshop saw enthusiastic participation from the students as they were asked to write advertisements for television commercials as well T1MAMCS as social media campaigns based on client briefs. The advertisements were he last pre-conference workshop of Media Meet 2020,was held on August rooted in the pandemic situation and forced students to think strategically 15, 2020. The workshop on “Advertisement Psychology” was conducted to meet the demands of the new normal. He also equipped the participants by Prakash Raghupathi, Associate Creative Director at Kinnect, a digital mar- with hands-on skills to apply psychological concepts while creating advertise- keting company. Raghupathi is skilled in interlacing a strategic approach with ments. creative thinking and is also the recipient of the ‘Young Achiever of the Year’ award in 2014, given by the Advertising Club of Bangalore in recognition of communication excellence. Prakash Raghupathi believes that advertisement psychology is a vast topic “ and it is necessary to understand the stories of major brands to study how advertising leverages human psychology. Once you get into the field of advertising, you will be bombarded with theories Through case studies of popular brands like Listerine, Diamond Shreddies, and data. But understand that while you are creating an advertisement, you need and Volkswagen Beetle, he emphasized to be as human as possible and think what you would do as a consumer” the need to keep an eye on everyday activities in order to create unique ”-Prakash Raghupathi advertisements. “It is possible to look at how people operate on a day to Media Meet 2020 commenced with three work- day basis and latch onto it in order to shops as part of its community outreach pro- advertise your product” he said while gramme. Parents of Christites and school teachers he also brought in contemporary were the key stakeholders. It was followed by five examples of advertisement campaigns exclusive workshops aimed at media students. The by brands like McDonald’s and Burger aspiring media students actively took part and en- King to elaborate on the application of psychology in advertising. riched their media literacy and related skills. The workshop also addressed the challenges in advertising during the pan- demic. The speaker explained how the existing advertisements which show people coming together, maintaining close contact, or travelling without any inhibition will not hold value in the current pandemic setting. “With the pan- demic, people have forgotten about their loyalties to specific brands. People now look at essentials and luxuries differently” he said.

M E D I A TA L K Selling a Brand’s Story Media Talk 2020 is the final event of the pre-conference events organised under Through Public Relations the flagship conference Media Meet 2020. The Department of Media Studies at CHRIST (Deemed to be University) takes pride in organizing Media Talk every -Sai Snehha year, which would serve as a great learning curve for the young and aspiring media students. This year, the fourth edition of Media Talk was organized virtually under Digital is the Way Forward the banner of “Media Literacy” which is the theme of this year. Adhering to the main theme, six eminent alumni of the department, who are successful professionals in -Aiswarya N various domains were invited to address the students. The students and faculty bene- fited from the event, where the speakers articulated the topics from their own career Domain Awareness and perspectives. Students enthusiastically participated by raising their questions to the Charting Your speakers. Career Selling a Brand’s Story Through Public Relations -Divina Ann Philipose Sai Snehha updated on relevant matters. Media Literacy in Ms. Vaz said, “Public relations is a prac- Business Journalism M3JOUH tice that a brand employs to connect with edia Meet 2020 under the theme the stakeholders through multiple means -Krupaharini M of ‘Media Literacy’ is breaking the such as direct communication, media, myths around media by throwing light and digital world to tell the brand sto- The Emerging Branding and on reality. The first speaker for the Media ry.” She also mentioned that convincing Content Talk was Janice Vaz, a communications a journalist to write or speak about the professional with expertise in the field client’s brand is one key success factor as Creation Market of public relations. She expressed that a PR professional. She concluded her talk “Growth in the field depends on how by giving a new understanding of digital -Srimoyee Biswas you can excel in knowing, understand- public relations and how it has grown be- ing, strategizing, selling your story and yond the traditional aspects. Experience Makes You a conceptualising ideas,”. The speaker in- Good troduced public relations (PR) as a pro- fession that requires one to know beyond Journalist theoretical knowledge, to keep one’s mind open to learning and constantly be -Krupaharini M Digital is the Way Forward Aiswarya N ping learning at any point of time,” she 3MAMCS said. She highlighted that one should continue Sindhu Kashyap, Associate editor of learning even after college. “A journalist YourStory Media, engaged with the should have enough knowledge about students in a discussion about fake news the base, before talking to the sources and digital era, during the Media Talk about that,” she said. Stressing on this, 2020. Spending fourteen years as a jour- she pointed out that it is equally import- nalist, an advertising copywriter, a cre- ant to make sure if the information re- ative content editor and a digital market- ceived is correct. ing executive, Sindhu Kashyap is now the Speaking on the pandemic and surg- Series Editor of YourStory Media. Fea- ing number of online media platforms, ture stories, in-depth stories and busi- she said that digital is the way forward. ness-related stories are the highlights of “Even with the pandemic, everything is this media platform. online. Print media is no longer as strong as earlier,” she said while stressing on the Expressing her happiness to come back rising digital era. At the end of the ses- to CHRIST (Deemed to be University) sion, she answered the questions from on a digital platform, she went on to talk the audience. about media literacy. “There are three key points to keep in mind as a journal- ist: being aware of your sources, doing research about the topic and never stop-

Domain Awareness and Charting Your The Emerging Branding and Content Career Creation Market Divina Ann Philipose is crucial to one’s career aspira- Srimoyee Biswas Emotion is the prime selling fac- tions. He moved on to explain the tor on television,’’ she said, talking A1MAMCS difference between a career and a N5JOUH about how media affects audienc- shwin Raghunath was the job. He asked students to not lose ikita Shroff is a content mar- es. There are several fundamentals third speaker at Media Talk focus of their career while having keter and copywriter by pro- which exist in these sectors and de- ‘20. A digital media consultant a job.Awareness or domain under- fession and binge reader and baker fine how content writing and copy- with Times Bridge, he calls his job standing, using career path refer- by passion. She started her career writing are two separate entities. “an amalgamation of all that I have ences from successful people in dabbling in the advertising sector. She also elaborated on the differ- done in radio, television and print”. the same role and pursuing some- “There was a presumption that as ences between content writing and His talk was on the importance of thing extra was the three resources I was a reader I would one day be- copywriting. media literacy in charting out a ca- he touched upon for charting out a come a writer,’’ she said while ad- Lastly speaking about her future reer in the field of media. career path. dressing the media students during aspiration, she said, “It is a job I The speaker ended the talk by the Media Talk 2020. love but I see myself with a bigger Mr Raghunath started his talk by asking participants to be aware of She went on to retrace her memo- end goal and these are my stepping highlighting the importance of where they wanted to go in the ries during her master’s degree and stones”.The speaker ended by reit- technical awareness and domain field. He also asked participants to her dissertation work with sublim- erating that one should always send awareness in one’s career map. give themselves a timeframe while inal advertising. She said, “Media the right information and products “Technical awareness helps you working on a job unrelated to the isn’t about what you see and con- to the buyer and making it relatable establish yourself,” he said, “while desired career field. sume but to know the process and is the crux of the whole idea which domain awareness helps you chart this is the relation of media literacy goes beyond ‘old school’ selling. your career”. He added that do- with advertisements.’’ main awareness was more import- “Humour plays an important as- ant than technical awareness as it pect in the marketing of a brand. Media Literacy in Business Journalism Experience Makes You a Good Journalist Krupaharini M textual understanding. Varsha Manoj Nair- glish, and Psychology (CEP) at Circling back to media literacy, as CHRIST(Deemed to be Universi- M3JPEng a journalist for a news wire such M1MAMCS ty), Nagarjun believes that it is very edia Talk 2020 consisted of as Reuters, Ms Somashekar is re- edia Talk, a pre-seminar important to build connections in speakers from diverse media quired to separate her media bias event of Media Meet 2020 the field of journalism and as stu- fields and one of them was Arathy and identity from her reportage. was held on August 22, 2020. The dents, internships play a crucial Somashekhar, a business journal- The easiest way to do this is to give platform aimed to bring togeth- role in networking. Recalling his ist with Reuters for six years. She both sides a voice in the story. er alumni from diverse fields of initial years in media, he empha- was in the newsroom during cer- She also recommended that jour- media to share experiences and sises the need for journalistic lit- tain important events like Brexit nalists and consumers must read insights on topics of current rele- eracy within media to distinguish and Trump’s election. The speaker everything from as many sources vance. credible information from fake/bi- has reported on reputed compa- as possible. She added, “Look at ased ones and reaffirms the impor- nies like Apple, Facebook, Ama- the medium, look at your engage- The last speaker for the day was tance of a journalist’s presence on zon and Disney. ment with the audience”. Nagarjun Dwarakanath, special social media. Nagarjun is also of She decoded the importance of correspondent with India Today the opinion that journalists should Ms Somashekar delved into the sourcing, especially for informa- TV. A commercial pilot turned learn new languages, adapt to new misconceptions regarding what tion recovered from social media. journalist, he started his career roles, and not confine themselves business journalists deal with. In Concluding on a positive note, she with CNN News 18 and is current- to their respective bureau loca- newspapers, people get bombard- said that it is a great time to be a ly heading the Karnataka Bureau tions. He concluded the session ed with a lot of technicalities, but journalist. of India Today TV. by urging students to never ignore at its core, business journalism is what is being taught in college and about people. She explained that He mainly covers politics and to never let go of internship expe- we must view it as places we shop aviation beats and has extensive riences. at, restaurants we eat at, offices our experience in election coverage parents work in and develop a con- across the country. A former stu- dent of BA Communication, En-

Fandom and Media Literacy F E AT U R E S Divina Ann Philipose Fandom and Media 1MAMCS Literacy -Divina Ann Philipose Two decades ago, Donna Alvermann lowed her to open her mind to multiple A Growing Need For published a research article on fan- meanings and perspectives. The idea that Media Literacy During dom and critical media literacy. Her re- the media needs to be looked at critically, search paper looked at how two pre-ad- can be a new idea to most people. Recog- The Pandemic olescent students engaged with music nising the different perspectives that gen- critically, due to their appreciation, liking, erate the content we consume, can seem -Varsha Manoj Nair etc. of a particular song or an artist. Ac- like a very alien concept. While we strug- cording to Alvermann, engaging with pop gle to talk to the dads and the moms in our Media Literacy: An culture interests in classrooms helped stu- living rooms about how the WhatsApp Effort to Identify the dents develop a more critical perspective forward sent by Ramya aunty on Ganga- Various Shades of Truth of the media they consumed. jal’s abilities to cure corona may not nec- Pop-culture is often treated with disregard essarily be true; we conveniently ignore -Srimoyee Biswas at the school level; too lowly and not aca- children sitting in the corner, listening as demic enough to be discussed in the class- these WhatsApp messages are broadcast- room. As much as schools may prefer to ed across the living room. distance themselves from engaging with So, while a section of the society worries such narratives, these fandoms hold the about our beloved, soon-to-be-extinct di- key to critical engagement. Even in Alver- nosaurs of the digital age, a section of us mann’s case, Sarah (one of the participants needs to worry about children listening of her study) was able to derive multiple keenly and slowly observing from the cor- meanings from her favourite song due to ner. The key to this may lie in taking them repeated engagement. seriously when they talk to us about why Sarah was able to recognize references to Chota Bheem could have defeated Kalia gender and sexuality made through the differently. song because she kept listening to it. It al- Media Literacy to Survive the Infodemic -Shruthi R Bharadwaj

A Growing Need For Media Literacy During The Pandemic Varsha Manoj Nair- self-proclaimed doctors prescribing cures for In a country like India, with a grow- COVID 19. Not surprisingly, most of this news ing social media presence, it’s un- W1MAMCS would have reached us through social media fortunate that many people still fall e are living amidst a tsunami of and sometimes forwarded by reliable sources prey to misinformation, which also information today, and India is like our family members. This not only adds plays a vital role in moulding their not just fighting against the pandem- to the authenticity of the information but also public opinions. It’s the need of the ic but also fake news, misinformation, makes us believe in the news. The need for me- hour to engage in learning and un- disinformation, and a larger infodem- dia literacy is crucial in times like these. learning to achieve media literacy. ic. According to the WHO Situation To create a media-literate society, Report-128 released in May 2020, the the effort should begin from a grass- word “COVID” ranks as the second roots level, where fact-checking is most used in all public English lan- taught as a part of the school cur- guage social media posts, which clear- riculum. The efforts should also ly shows our growing engagement involve the unlearning process for with the emerging narratives around people living in the echo chambers COVID 19. Globally, there has been of disinformation. A collective effort involving a spike in the number of social media all stakeholders like professionals, law-enforc- posts representing fear; however, in ing bodies, local administration, and the public India, this spike is also associated with is necessary to achieve media literacy in India. a rise in misinformation. Over the past few months, we have come across videos accusing vendors of spitting on vege- tables to spread the virus deliberately, social campaigns to stop consumption of meat to fight coronavirus, and even audio messages of Media Literacy: An Effort to Identify the Various Shades of Truth Srimoyee Biswas ‘The triumph of good over evil’ is not what media literacy encompasses but requires the reader to un- M5JOUH derstand multiple perspectives. For instance, Sur- edia has been an inte- panakha and the blows she had to endure on Ram gral element of peo- and Laxman’s behalf, how Meghnad fought by his ple’s lives throughout history, father’s side till his last breath and perhaps how it is the accumulated whole Ravana dared not touch Sita without her consent. of every information which Similarly, if one looks at the Mahabharata, Kar- has flowed from the clay tab- na was a child wronged at birth and perhaps the lets to the wandering bard’s Pandavas did not value ‘dharma’ as much as they songs. Civilizations have cre- claimed and let their wife be publicly humiliated ated and engaged in various for losing a bet to their brothers, justifying it all mediums of storytelling to as a wager. If one closely looks, one can determine transmit their tales through how the legacy of these great stories isn’t merely time, which still reverbs in black and white, exemplifying how societies were some corners of the narratives back then and are supposed to be. in contemporary society. Very In light of the recent events, discerning the truth from the fake pieces frequently, when one engages of news has become integral but nowhere are we as a society closer to in a conversation about epics identifying the ‘absolute truth’ as there exists none. So perhaps in this and the roles of the respective heroes in them the listener often quips in endeavour to distinguish the right from wrong, we must simultaneously with names like ‘Ram’ from Ramayan and ‘Arjun’ from Mahabharata. educate ourselves to glean the facts and devise our opinions regard- ing the same. Media literacy is not simply about knowing the facts but Upon further discussions, they go on to reiterate the importance of learning to base our truths in the realities we experience to further the their deeds and how important the notions of bravery, morality and process of information dissemination more effectively. their pursuit to uphold the betterment of people. What we know now as stories were cardinal in setting rules and defining the ‘good’ for all in the society. That is where the premise of any good media lies. It can be defined as what every hero aspired to fight against, the well being of the rest. But media literacy, on the other hand, can have a very different connotation.

Media Literacy to Survive the Infodemic Shruthi R Bharadwaj cial to not only to literate each citizen about in order to maintain rationality along media and its efficacy but also to aid them with with rendering logical facts is a quint- M3JPEng necessary resources to check facts. Thus, media essential feature of media literacy. It edia literacy also known literacy proves to be of immense importance to encourages consumers to discrete- as information literacy make individuals self-sufficient. ly discern and question and broaden plays a vital role right from It would reduce the consequences of claiming their experience of news media. the process of creation to con- conclusions, just based on rumours or beliefs. Examining the prospects of bias, pro- sumption of news. The pan- Promulgating available platforms to verify news paganda, censorship and administer- demic has also drawn a parallel ing probable solutions to enhance the with the ‘infodemic’. situation is the ultimate goal of media literacy. Pertaining to all sources of The deluge of fake news and media, aware netizens or citizens can retaining news from several stir up change in the right direction. sources not only leads to am- Media literacy is the ability to recognise the in- biguity but develops anxiety formation conveyed from different platforms and panic among the readers. of media. The receivers of such information Moreover, the upsurge of mis- should be able to grasp, understand, analyse as information has resulted in greater amounts of well as build upon the content put forth. doubt concerning the credibility and reliability of the media. Evaluating and reflecting on data been con- veyed through different medium of commu- nication such as broadcast, or print carries a distinctive set influence for the target audience, even when the information is similar. It is cru EDITORIAL EDITORS REPORTERS Sathya N Christina Tom This is the age of information deluge. Being literate does not pertain Akchayaa R to knowing how to read and write but decoding and analysing the Aiswarya N information we receive on a daily basis. Reading between the lines re- DESIGNER Varsha Manoj Nair quires ample knowledge of the various facets of media. Anirudh M Divina Ann Philipose To ensure that people are not in the midst of an ‘infodemic’, the media Srimoyee Biswas must function efficiently and provide accurate information without sen- sationalising it. Sai Snehha N The Department of Media Studies at CHRIST (Deemed to be Univer- Shruthi R Bharadwaj sity) is extremely proud to host the eleventh edition of Media Meet, the annual flagship event of the Department. With the theme as “Media Krupaharini Literacy”, for this year, Media Meet 2020 is the first ever virtually held international conference with nearly forty guests and hundreds of par- ticipants. Aimed at serving as the tool to tackle the flood of information, this year’s newsletter ‘The Spectackle’ has covered the events of this conference in excruciating detail. We are extremely happy to present the newsletter which is the culmination of the hard work and continuous efforts of the documentation team. Our belief is that this newsletter will inculcate the need for a more critical approach to media consumption in every person who reads it.

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