Representation in media

By Jasmine Watts


Today was the first time in our study abroad experience that we met in a classroom and had a lecture, given by Dan Wheatley. I was a bit disappointed that we weren’t doing anything adventurous today but I changed my mind quickly about 5 minutes into the discussion.
Dan talked to us about the history of race in Britain and what’s to come in the future. In many ways the city of London alone is like America. It’s a melting pot. There are over 300 languages spoken in this city alone. Not only are there linguistic differences, there are physical differences. This is the most diverse place I’ve seen in the UK so far, it’s really refreshing.
There are however issues in the UK just like in America with people who have islamophobia and ISIS. It was interesting when we discussed the role of the media when portraying these people. When I was a little girl, I hated watching the news at night. It was full of bad news and gave me nightmares. This is something that Dan said happens here when portraying Muslim people. Often there are many extremes portrayed that isn’t an accurate representation of the entire group. This can strike fear in people and allow them to misjudge others. It is the role of the press to show the good and the bad. Often times, the good news doesn’t seem “newsworthy”. I feel that these truths need to be reported to give lightheartedness to the news and better represent the people. I think that the MSU j-school is like no other because we learn ethics of journalism. We learn to not report on one side, but to get the full story with no bias. We learn how to write hard core news but also fun feature stories. I think that all news organizations should balance the good and the bad, be truthful and fair.

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