JRNL102 – AssesmentTwo

CORDEAUX BEACH

Hidden waterfalls and secret waterholes, what better way to spend the summer days of your youth. Spending hours searching, following the sound of rushing water until you found the perfect secret spot to camp out for the day. Have you ever heard of ‘Cordeaux Beach’? I didn’t think so!

Patrick and James are Cordeaux Heights locals who have spent many days searching the back rivers, creeks and train tracks of the inland suburb way into the hills of Mount Kembla searching for this deeply hidden waterhole. Patrick exclaimed, “after two weeks of searching we almost decided it was an urban legend and almost gave up!” James laughed and agreed.

The waterhole is a series of pools some deep and some shallow.  After heavy rains, the water cascades heavily and quickly from the top pool down into the bottom. The bottom pool is the largest and the deepest and is the reason for the naming. It gets shallow around its edges and runs onto the debris and tiny stones in a similar way to the ocean lapping the sand on its shore

The reason the waterhole is so difficult to find is due to its location next to Cordeaux Road. Cordeaux Road is the main road into and out of Cordeaux Heights and it constantly busy and noisy. The sound of the cars masks the running water and it is not safe for pedestrians to walk along at any time during the day.

The two boys laugh as they reminisce about the first time they realised they could access the waterhole so easily from that road. James through his laughter explains “we spent so many hours trekking through overgrowth and mud and now we cross a road and duck under a hedge and we are there!”.

The concealed entrance is one you have to be ‘in the know’ to find or you might just walk right past it! The obscure location gives visitors a feeling of being alone and at peace whilst the world still buzzes around them. The running water and chirping birds offer a certain ambience that blends with the roaring of passing cars to ensure you don’t forget the world is still turning whilst you float and daydream.

Patrick tells “there is something so special about having your own hidden oasis within a small suburb where everyone thinks they know everything” he goes on to explain “it makes me feel as though maybe I know something they don’t”. The boys wish to keep the exact location top secret.

 

Twitter Links

Twitter Profile: https://twitter.com/BrittanyJane43

Tweet 1: https://twitter.com/BrittanyJane43/status/917339901305118722

Tweet 2: https://twitter.com/BrittanyJane43/status/919520293797863426

Tweet 3: https://twitter.com/BrittanyJane43/status/919522913086087170

Tweet 4: https://twitter.com/BrittanyJane43/status/919527659738054656

Tweet 5: https://twitter.com/BrittanyJane43/status/919528062596689921

Advertisements

Emotional History Part 2: Reflection

“The report should illustrate one or more of the six primary emotions” (McHugh, 2017). In my twenty -year old mind, that sounded like a challenge. The words ‘or more’ rang around my head all day as I considered various stories, angles, individuals, soundtracks etc. Then it hit me. I interviewed a lady I know from my local dog park. She is one of the kindest people I know, she has such an interesting voice and all the time in the world to talk about her dogs. One especially, her golden retriever AJ. Heather had felt love and loss so immensely through her dogs, I have spent hours talking to her and I wanted to showcase the emotions she made me feel through my emotional history. Heather has such special way with her words I knew she was the perfect fit.

Before the interview, I questioned, why does her story matter? Journalistically Heather is relatable, those with pets know the immense love you have for them. Her story will bring out emotions of sadness, happiness and surprise. Her story is simple and easy to follow and you can not help but feel her emotions along with her.

When it came time to edit my interview, I decided to use Hindenburg as it goes beyond the editing programs I have and focuses on being first and foremost “a storytelling tool” (Hindenburg, 2017). My total interview was around 3 minutes long, I was very careful with what pieces I cut out as I had an ethical obligation to Heather to tell her story truthfully. I could see so many different ways into this story, however, I stuck to Heather’s series of events as I believed this would ensure I stayed the closest and most true to her story. Hindenburg was easy to learn and I picked it up very quickly, the more I edited the better I became. Cutting and splitting proved the most difficult for me, especially keeping and cutting breaths.

My biggest downfall during my interview was that I did not correctly level my microphone, it was not one I was familiar with and I did not allow enough time to learn how to use it correctly. I conducted my interview in the silent back corner room of a library and yet it sounds like there are children playing with blocks right beside us. Listening back, this was infuriating as there was nothing I could do to alter it now and Heather was unable to retake the interview. However, I am glad I have learnt this lesson early on and I hope it will help me to become a better journalist in the future.

Lori Deschene once said “Practice the pause”(Deschene, 2017) and I found this to be true in more ways than one during this task. Firstly, I had to “practice the pause”(Deschene, 2017) when interviewing as I did not want to speak over Heather and I ensured I always left a beat in order to cut my own voice out later on. I also had to “practice the pause”(Deschene, 2017) when editing as I wanted Heather to sound as natural as possible, even when I had to cut out words or sentences from her free speech. The pauses were so important, as I want my listeners to feel her pain and her elation. I want them to pause during the break in the middle and imagine the joy Heather must have felt upon hearing there was a dog available for her to rescue. I want my listeners to understand that AJ rescued Heather from such a dark time and I hope I conveyed this through her words, AJs barking and playing and strategic music and pauses throughout.

References:

Deschene, L. (2017). Practice the Pause – Tiny Buddha. [online] Tiny Buddha. Available at: https://tinybuddha.com/fun-and-inspiring/practice-the-pause/ [Accessed 27 Aug. 2017].

 Hindenburg (2017). USER GUIDE Hindenburg Journalist PRO. Hindenburg Journalist for Apple OS X. [online] Hindenburg, p.7. Available at: https://moodle.uowplatform.edu.au/pluginfile.php/1119123/mod_resource/content/1/Hindenburg%20Journalist%20OSX%20user%20guide.pdf [Accessed 27 Aug. 2017].

University of Wollongong (2017). JRNL102 Convergent Media Reporting and Production. Spring Session 2017. [online] Wollongong: University of Wollongong, p.11. Available at: https://moodle.uowplatform.edu.au/pluginfile.php/1095635/mod_resource/content/1/2017%20JRNL%20102%20Subject%20Outline.pdf [Accessed 27 Aug. 2017].

 

Welcome to Nollywood

With visual commentary on race, sex, love, violence, class, and consumerism through every Nollywood film, it is no wonder they are such a roaring success within Nigeria. So succesful in fact, that Nollywood has been identified as the world’s third largest film industry.

nollywood

The industry seems to have boomed in recent times and is “undoubtedly helping create jobs in a country with an economy that relies mainly on oil and agriculture”. Nollywood is the second biggest employer after agriculture in Nigeria providing “over one million jobs”.  The low production costs and fast production allows for a high turnover rate increasing profits greatly. Nollywood churns out “50 movies per week” on average. This suggests over 2600 Nollywood movies are produced each year compared to an average of 500 from Hollywood.

The surprising element of such a thriving film industry is that it is not found in cinemas. Nollywood is unique in that it is the “content of the video films that mattered and not the medium”.  The films are also designed in such a way they are not meant to be watched all at once, a foreign concept to western audiences. The films are often observed from the streets or pirated movie copies. Piracy is such a problem within Nollywood it is estimated by the world bank that “nine pirated copies of a film are sold for every legitimate one”.

In an attempt to combat issues of piracy, Nollywood is looking to expand into cinemas and television. Whilst this may take away the ubiquity of the films from the street audiences it is hoped it will ensure the industry continues to grow. Nigerian media was until recently under the tight grip of the state, it was the street corner viewings that brought out the “flotsam and jetsem of society”, it was these street corners that promoted “a world which is outside what the State configures for public consumption”.

Imagine walking down a street to find all the TV sets facing the window in a store and instantly knowing hey, there’s a new film showing right here tonight! That is the world of Nollywood; over the top and thrilling commentary on African life.

giphy-downsized-large

How to Speak Straylan

coolnsmart-13627

If Epictetus had it right, then Australia can proudly hold their title as ‘Land of the Free’. As an Australian, I am proud to be currently enrolled within our tertiary education system. I strongly believe it is one of the things our government has got right. As institutions, universities embody social, economic and intellectual resources which combine to generate benefits on a local, national and global scale. Of the approximately  one million students enrolled in universities across Australia, international students make up around 300,000 of these. This varies across campus’ with the rate of international students varying widely between 3% and 46%.

Australia is quick to boast that they have one of the highest “shares of tertiary-educated adults” however, these shares would vary greatly if it were not for the “international students”.  The increase in international students has sparked interest within the Australian government as “International education is Australia’s third or fourth largest export industry”. The government seeks to “continue to improve the effectiveness of governance and regulation in international education”.

Why are international students choosing to study in Australia? Universities Australia conducted a study into this and found the top reasons cited to be:

1.Reputation of chosen qualification (reported by 95 per cent of respondents);
2. Reputation of chosen institution (94 per cent); and
3. Reputation of Australia’s education system (93 per cent).

The study showed with overwhelming evidence that it is the quality of the education provided as well as Australia’s educational reputation that draws International students to Australian campus’.

So what could be driving them away? Studies have found issues with culture are common for example; it could be the “Stralyan” more commonly known as Australian Slang.

a1007432c768035c0be771fa7f8cf8dd--australia-funny-western-australiaWhilst this unique language is not often found on the pages of a textbook or exam booklet, “research suggests that there is an interconnection between
English language proficiency and social interaction”.  The government recognises the best way to overcome this is through social interactions between domestic and international students, Such interactions not only strengthen the students’ language proficiency in English and their communicative competence but also their confidence and sense of agency.

Whilst Tertiary education in Australia is highly successful and sought after, the international or intercultural educational experience is not as “rich…as it could be”.

In order to demonstrate the value of learning and education worldwide, I will leave you on a happier note.  With some words from some of the best mentors and teachers fiction has to offer!

a4501b7c7843ae3d2aebfcd65e5fd990.jpg

You Push a Button and the World is yours.

“You push a button and the world is yours”

 

Surely in 1964 Canadian communication philosopher Marshall McLuhan had no idea just how true this statement would be over 50 years on.

As of 2017, over 50% of the world’s population now has access to the internet, half the population of the world also has access to a smart phone. These numbers are enormous and astounding. McLuhan coined the phrase “the global village” to describe the very beginning of this phenomenon. The global village is understood to transcend the physical in a way that allows everyone to have a voice and opinion whilst providing the freedom to share these. It pushes the idea that “people of the world can be brought closer together by the globalisation of communication, no matter how far apart we may actually live”. 

 

Quotefancy-1763692-3840x2160.jpg

The concept of a global community has also been accepted by the great minds of the 21st century including Bill Gates. 

Findings published by ‘we are social’ in collaboration with ‘hootsuite’ reveal that every year we edge closer to this global concept becoming a reality, perhaps we are for now a town square but over time the online communities will flourish and connect so inextricably the world of today will seem old and backwards. With hopes of free speech and safe spaces, one can only dream!

2bcb4747f56dad1f013bf880c2ab8d86

When looking at what percentage of the world population is online, I began to question where this traffic is coming from, what parts of the world are connected and just how connected are they.  When looking at the map below, it is clear that North America penetrates the market in the largest way with 88% of its residents connected to the internet. When one compares this to a mere 33% in South Asia it is easy to understand concerns of “cultural imperialism”. Whilst considered a “dystopian view”, the concerns can be evidenced and are very real.

 

When weighing up both the utopian views of a global community and the dystopian views of cultural imperialism, I begin to wonder. If I push a button, is the world really mine? or am I buying right into cultural imperialism.

 

Persona O’Neill

Essena O’Neill. When you hear this name now what bell does it ring? I hate that I linked a wikipedia page to her name but honestly, the girl we all thought we knew, has vanished. Essena, in late 2015 ‘quit’ social media due to the persona she created overwhelming her, leaving her feeling isolated and alone. She created an online presence that portrayed her to be always effortlessly happy and healthy not to mention flawlessly beautiful. Essentially, Essena was seen by her audiences to be the ‘perfect’ girl with the ‘perfect’ life that everyone thought was just ‘goals’. This all came unstuck when she decided it just was not her anymore, and so a new persona arose…

Essena showcases the downside of creating an online persona, one that is so far from the truth it was exhausting to keep up. In her series of photos (which are posted below) she highlights that in order to fit into her own fictional ideals she would often not eat and describes her use of social media to be an “addiction”. O’Neill openly admits “I now wish I wasn’t wearing such a mask”. She used social media platforms, especially Instagram completely to her advantage with clever use of paid promotions, editing, hashtags, demonstrating values her followers aspired to etc.  Then, she tore her own persona to shreds…. Makes me wonder, was she really just building a new online face?

Creating an online persona can be a dangerous game, however I believe we all do it to a certain degree. For instance, I know I would never post an unflattering image of myself online or hashtag anything that might paint me as a less than perfect person. With the exception of an experimental Instagram I share with some friends called “theflippedside” where we aim to post snapshots of our real lives. Let’s take a moment to contrast the two.

Obviously the pictures of me between these two accounts vary greatly! The persona I project on my own Instagram is that of a very happy young woman with great friends and family; a social being. The other account is reality, I am not ashamed to admit I have blemishes, I dropped a smoothie on my foot or that most days I stay in my pyjamas. That certainly doesn’t mean I want to post it online though! ‘The flipped side’ highlights that whether we realise we are doing it or not, everyone has an online persona that emphasises the good and omits the average and hides the bad.

(just saying^^)