Media Mindfulness: Right-brained? Left-brained? Take the test!

See on Scoop.itMedia Mindfulness

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

I’m a big fan of developing mindfulness for how our brains work. This simple test helps us determine which hemisphere dominates our thought patterns. Media are closely linked to the hemispheres. Print is largely left-brained and TV is predominately right-brained. I came out 50/50.

See on en.sommer-sommer.com

The High Price of Materialism

See on Scoop.itGreening the Media Ecosystem

More at http://www.newdream.org Video by the Center for a New American Dream Psychologist Tim Kasser discusses how America’s culture of consumerism undermine…

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

Nice, simple video explaining the relationship between media and materialism. It also offers some suggestions for changing our consumptive patterns.

See on www.youtube.com

Life imitates ad: Meet the Trees Foundation responds to Toys R Us

A Toys R Us ad that ridicules environmental education made fun of a fictional environmental organization called Meet the Trees. In response to the ad’s anti-environment message, some enterprising folks poke a little fun at Toys R Us by creating a web site for the Meet the Trees Foundation, the fictional organization featured in the ad. While I applaud the activists’ efforts–in particular its action page that helps people give Toys R Us a piece of their mind–the web site could use some help. I think the design and images reinforce a little of what the Toys  R Us ad was mocking. Regardless, I’m glad someone took the initiative to have a little fun at the expense of Toys R Us.

Green Unplugged: Fantastic online film festival of eco-documentaries and shorts

See on Scoop.itGreening the Media Ecosystem

“‘Culture Unplugged’ is not just a name of a studio, it is a mission – a vision and aspiration to integrate disparate parts of the self and the global human society. It aims to achieve this, primarily by leveraging the power of new media and extending the effort to offline events and actions. But above all, achieve the mission by being the seeker of truth ‘herself’ on the journey ‘her’ vision charts ahead – not just be an organization, but be the way of being – as referred here as ‘She’…”

 

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

The Green Unplugged online festival is a treasure trove of documentaries and artistic explorations. It has a great vision and mission designed to raise consciousness and support independent media. Please check it out and get lost in its great content.

See on www.cultureunplugged.com

Frack me: Toys R Us ad is Pied Piper to eco-apocolypse


Busloads of kids get surprise trip to Toys”R”Us – YouTube.

The latest from the media gods, whose gifts keep on giving for all the wrong reasons. In the newest installment, this Toys R Us ad blows over all commons sense like a climate change induced hurricane. The ad depicts a busload of mostly kids of color who are being taken on a field trip to “nature” (I use quotation marks because it is ultimately a false distinction). It mocks environmental education by falsely depicting a boring, un-engaged presentation about oak leaves. Then suddenly the kids learn that they had been tricked and were actually going to Toys R Us. Like moths to a flame, they sprint ecstatically into a furnace of Chinese-manufactured toxins.*

The ad is wrong on so many levels, but let’s start with the demographic of the children. Urban kids of color have been shown to have “nature deficit” because of a lack of access to environmental education and “nature.” Under-served youths tend to live in cities and attend schools that don’t have the resources for environmental education. This problem is being addressed by the No Child Left Inside model, but there is a long way to go, and ads like this certainly don’t help the matter.

Toys R Us offers itself as a kind of WIllie Wonka of the consumer sublime, a concept developed by David Nye. Over the past hundred and fifty years or so as we have shifted into techno-scientific modernity, the sublime has transformed from an experience of awe of nature to awe of the technological cornucopia that surrounds us. The ad reinforces this by representing its toy store as a magical kingdom of discovery and amazement. But the ancient meaning of awe–“terror–comes closer to the reality behind Toys R Us, a kind of Lord of the Flies of globalization.

It just amazes me that the more we know about the state of our planetary ecological crisis, the more corporations shill denial. Also, it’s hard to believe this wasn’t made by The Onion.

PS Check out The Cobert Reports’ response.

* I’m not China bashing here, just drawing attention to where this crap is made. Just as the Colombians shouldn’t be blamed for our coke addiction, nor should we accuse the Chinese for our over-consumerism.

Interactive: This Is How Much Money Twitter Owes You | TIME.com

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Want to know if your Twitter feed produces enough value to retire? Enter your username to find out

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

Media Mindfulness: How much attention did I generate for Twitter and what is it worth? An interesting exercise in awareness for how attention is commoditized by commercial media.

See on newsfeed.time.com

Media Mindfulness: The battle for power on the internet

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Distributed citizen groups and nimble hackers once had the edge. Now governments and corporations are catching up. Who will dominate in the decades ahead?

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

If internet security expert Brice Schneir is correct, our internet is increasingly resembling a feudal system. To avoid spiraling deeper into this abyss, he makes several practical suggestions, including the obvious point that we need more transparency, oversight and decentralization. And guess where it’s going to come from. Not the NSA or AT&T. It’s going to be a tough fight.

See on m.theatlantic.com

Media Mindfulness: navigating the ambient commons

See on Scoop.itMedia Mindfulness

In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space–the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza–becomes part of any mental engagement with it. Without claiming how neuroscience proves “we” think this way or that, this book may help you understand embodied cognition. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less, and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information.

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

Malcolm McCullough’s Digital Ground is one of the best books on contemporary computing–he is quite literally one of the most grounded writers of the digital era. I haven’t yet finished his most recent, Ambient Commons, but I’m already digging his idea of information environmentalism.

See on ambientcommons.org

Media Mindfulness: Complex narratives buck digital distractions theory

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The rise of complex TV series and vast novels shows we still prefer commitment to a quick fix, writes Stuart Jeffries

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

The flipside of the "Google is making us stupid" polemic is the increased complexity of storytelling in the media. A lot of media literacy folks really hated Steven Johnson’s "TV is making us smarter" argument,  but when you look at the way books, TV, film, comix and video games are being made these days, we should think critically about the "dumbing down" argument. 

See on www.theguardian.com

New book battles to define ‘Avatar Spirituality’

See on Scoop.itGreening the Media Ecosystem

“A new book of essays on the meaning of Avatar, is a down-in-the-dirt wrestling match between those who resonate with it and those who hate a film that’s been labeled pro-civilization and anti-civilization, pro-science and anti-science, un-American…”

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

The book’s editor, Bron Taylor, writes: "In my own wrap up to the book I argue that, despite the many disagreements about the film, there are important truths in the film’s central themes, namely, that the spread of what we call civilization (first agricultural, later agro-industrial) has inexorably led to the destruction of both biological and cultural diversity. This is a reality that is seldom expressed in any nation today, for they are all wrapped up in pursuing economic growth with little concern for the damage this entails for peoples at the social margins let alone other species and environmental systems." I agree that the film plays an important role in a broader philosophical discussion and that some of the knee-jerk responses to its style and content have ignored how audiences actually responded to the film.

See on www.religiondispatches.org

Media Mindfulness: Tiffany Shlain’s technology shabbatt

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Tiffany Shlain, award-winning filmmaker, speaker, and founder of The Webby Awards, shares how living in today’s over-connected world has led her family to unplug for one full day every week.

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

Filmmaker Tiffany Shlain explores why it’s good to unplug one day a week. But before you do, read this post!

See on on.aol.com

Media Mindfulness: ‘Darkest Austria’ goes where ‘no black man has set foot before’

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“Anthropologist Kayonga Kagame of Kinshasa University” (Actor Frank Oladeinde) Purporting to be an episode of “Other Countries, Other Customs: Kayonga Kagame Shows Us The World,” a production of the fictitious All African Television network,…

Antonio Lopez‘s insight:

A reversal of roles reveals some disturbing truths about European prejudice and taken-for-granted frames used in the media.

See on dangerousminds.net