Media has such a world-wide impact on our society. It’s like a second life that we just “can’t” live without. From our cellphones to Youtube, Netflix, movie theatres, and cartoon animation, it’s just amazing how attach we’ve become to it. Media however, also has our self-identification. We end up forgetting who we are.
Our society views media as a gateway to a second chance of life. A way in which we can become anything we imagine. “Social media has caused people to move away from their real self-identities due to negative messages displayed by the media and other social forces. Dobson (2002) suggests that self-identity is a ‘global understanding someone has of themselves (and) is composed of relatively permanent self-assessments.’” (Patrick White article) It’s an escape from reality to a fantasy. A fantasy where you change who you are and showcase your false self to others. Creating how you want your society to view you. “As voice chat is becoming more common in online games, players are feeling a need to customize the sound of their voice. These gamers may have spent a long time customizing the look of their avatars, why not have voices to match?” (Mark Ramirez example). We hold grudges towards how society depicts and prejudges us. Why not turn to media to change that aspect? We can create something that’s better than ourselves, something superior, something or someone worth checking into. We all want somewhere or someplace where we can get attention and be respected. Unfortunately, we never realize we’re just throwing away many parts of our identity to make room for a new one. If you can’t figure out who you are, we’ll just create a new you, a “better” you.
I am also a victim of media. I would say I’m a person that doesn’t showcase much appearances through social media or create an avatar to demonstrate a “better” me in online gaming. More so to create something or someone that resembles my actual self. Where my own comic series falls into place, I plan on one day publishing to the public to showcase those features, but you can say he’s also like a superior version of myself. I created him to have cosmic energy abilities and do things I am unable to do myself. However, the primary focus is his personality. He’s someone relatable, and can go through the same confliction we all go through, self-identity. It’s something I could say I’m still going through to this day, something I can unusually sense but can never put my finger on. The media affected those restrictions where I can showcase that through my character. Not implying that it’s really all that of a big deal, everybody goes through it and expresses it to the media whether they’re satisfied or unsatisfied of their identity, but it’s just a simple feeling I must carry out.
In terms, Media has greatly affected everyone in some way shape or form, whether through identity, personality, or even our gender. Gender plays a big role in media, it can help or hurt our ability to self- identify. Examples can be celebrities such Michael Jackson with his appearance features show casing a more feminine structure, or even the retired Olympic gold medal-winning decathlete Caitlyn Jenner. “On the trailer, Caitlyn says, “Isn’t it great that maybe someday [I’ll] be normal? Just blend into society. . .” A voice off camera: “You are normal.” (Ramona Grigg example) Society as we know it carries standard rules and law for each gender between males and females, and the media portrays that aspect. Gender identity can venture either way in media, and can create beneficial portrayals to the public or not so much. Personally for myself, I really don’t have any problems of my gender identity, people will see me and immediately know I’m a male. It can be through public, social networking or online video games. Bottom line, I would say gender identity helps my ability to self–identify as a person. Society has their expectations of how a male should behave. This can hurt self-identification. My motto is just simply “be yourself”. If you’re satisfied with your gender, personality, and identity, great! In the end, we all have the ability to define who we are and what we want to become.
In Conclusion, Media as a whole depicts how we should think and behave. Just watch Sesame Street, Blues Clues, and all the other shows that demonstrates that, you’ll notice it. Not to say that’s unfortunate for any of us, it does enable us to do critical thinking and become inspired of a work to motivate yourselves to work toward it. Although, it comes down to the person witnessing to decide how to carry through and what to do with it. Just ask, how do you want to shape yourself through the media?