Sex as Media Content The presence of sexual content in mass media products has been largely settled by the U.S. Supreme Court. Adults’ constitutional rights to sexual depictions are generally protected, as is people’s access to such content, unlike when the federal government banned Joyce’s Ulysses in the 1930s. Sexually explicit content can be offered by satellite broadcasters and hotels with pay-per-view options because these delivery models are not subject to regulation. The same applies to online content, with the exception of child pornography. The global distribution of explicit material has been simplified by social media. The FCC still has statutory controls over what is said on public airwaves.
7.6 Artistic Values
Significant creative content can be found in the mass media. In movies there are auteurs. In literature there are Harper Lees, Truman Capotes, and John Grishams. Masterpieces, however, are exceptions in the huge ocean of media content. The economics of modern mass media pressures companies to produce quantities to meet huge demands. Sometimes the bar for quality is lowered in the process. Market-driven production lines for TV series, romance novels, and other genres churn out content for less selective mass audiences.
Chapter 8 Public Relations
Dove’s “Campaign for Real Beauty” In 2004, Dove decided to rebrand itself, and reshape society’s image of women along with it. They hired Edelman, the world’s largest public relations company to help the company achieve its goal. Edelman commissioned a study of 3,000 women in 10 countries with the goal of learning more about women’s priorities and interests. Among the results was a startling discovery—only 2% of the respondents considered themselves beautiful. Dove decided to use these results to challenge the media’s unrealistic conceptualization of women’s beauty. With Edelman’s help, Dove launched several public relations campaigns designed to both challenge the beauty industry’s unrealistic and manipulative portrayal of women’s beauty (through photoshop and using underweight models), and celebrate the diversity of women, all of whom are beautiful.
The first campaign was called “Real Curves,” involving a series of advertisements and billboards that showed curvy women in lingerie. Other campaigns included films portraying some aspect of women’s beauty or the beauty industry, such as “Evolution,” The short film showed the “evolution” that a model goes through with hair, makeup and photoshop, highlighting the beauty industries’ “tricks of the trade.”
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