User or loser

As an entire generation, we are becoming increasingly more proactive in the social sphere of media as a means of connecting to one another for common communication and collaborating with each other for collective knowledge. Within this process we have rapidly progressed from consumers to prosumers; digesting, exploiting, linking, liking, sharing, tweeting and questioning all that we can.

But back in the ‘olden days,’ which really aren’t so old at all, merely before the creation of the internet and social networking, the majority of media was deposited down a standardised production line before it could be published to an audience. Ownership was absolute, diminishing opposing opinions and exposing audiences to one sided arguments. This filtered ‘effect’ has decreased in popularity over the years and furthermore encouraged its audiences to be the advocates of information (citizen journalism) – to use the voice our social networking platforms have provided us with.

For example in the case of Barack Obama’s 2008 election as president of the United States, he became the first political aspirant to effectively integrate and rely upon social media in his electoral campaign as a means of reaching out to an entirely new voting base., run by Chris Hughes – one of the three co-founders of Facebook – incorporated “online tools that allowed members to identify neighbours that the Obama campaign thought might be potential backers and then report back on any resulting conversations.” The ‘Obama presidential campaign’ also spent approximately $643,000 out of $16 million Internet budget to promote his Facebook account ” in addition to the ever-popular twitter account, @BarackObama, which lies “among the top ten worldwide in both followers and followed,” promoting legislation and support for his policies to the widest possible audience.

Media ownership is such a powerful source, the control it has over its consumers and prosumers grows with each new member of its ‘participatory culture,’ but the freedom associated within this online society has helped the audience in a number of ways, first and foremost, by giving them the ability to form their own impartial and independent opinions on matters both within and beyond their usual sphere of influence, and the capacity to share it with anyone and everyone by choice of interest.


“Language Disguises Thought”

Semiotics: The study of signs and symbols and their use or interpretation …In other words, the way in which we know that the word tree, means the object tree, or how a red light, forces one to stop. Semiotics accounts for how and why this automatic knowledge and reaction occurs, through the means of a denotation and a connotation, a signifier and a signified.

Confused? Let me break it down further – obviously, my interpretations of the picture below will differ greatly from those who do not follow the ‘Dexter’ series and only have this advertisement to go by, but that is semiotics in action!

wordpress number 3

Denotation of this advertisement: this is the ‘signifier’ (what is actually present in the image itself, the things that give meaning). In the case above, there is an image of a man dressed in all white, kneeling with his hands folded in front of him. The red blood splatter on his jacket coincides with the red font above him; there is also text beside and below him.

Connotation of this advertisement: this is the ‘signified’ (what is evoked in the mind, the mental concept that follows). For those who have never watched Dexter, nor are familiar with his character, would see no further than his composed, yet somewhat cheeky facial expression and the casual positioning of his body regardless of the incriminating blood spatter on the top right of his jacket, where the heart lies. The phrase “Handsome devil Dexter Morgan” would seem standard, the man depicted is relatively handsome to most, yet “The serial killer you could take home to Mom” would confuse a foreign audience, what kind of a person would bring a serial killer home to meet their mother?

As for regular Dexter fans, myself, and my mother for that matter, who watch Dexter religiously will know that cheeky grin too well, and the blood splatter on his jacket is representative of both his job as a ‘blood spatterist’ for the Miami Police Department and his other ‘occupation,’ as a serial killer -the positioning of the blood in front of his heart is associated with Dexter’s continual questioning of his ‘soul’ and its existence. Claiming “Handsome devil,” Dexter Morgan lives up to this title incredulously, he is in my opinion an intensely sexy serial killer, working for the police to catch those of a similar descent. “The serial Killer you could bring home to Mom’ insinuates how well hidden his aggressive and murderous traits are, when his ‘dark passenger’ is at bay, he is a loving and caring father, brother and for some part husband who wants the best for those around him, however, his internal struggles place these relationships in constant jeopardy.

-from title; Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus
-advert from –


I’m Nicola, and happen to be completely unfamiliar and a little bemused by ‘WordPress’ (especially the themes, so I’ve given up for tonight) no matter how many times I went over the ‘Becoming Digital’ instructions, so bear with me BCM110 and 12. Just to be brief for my introductory post, I’m 18 years of age, graduated last year from Lake Illawarra High School and am now undertaking a double degree of Communications and Media Studies w/ International studies.
So far, I’ve enjoyed my experience at the University of Wollongong, the matters of parking and building 19 being obvious exceptions.