Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Right brain/left brain – Red brain/blue brain

This week is a ground breaking one in the history of the UK political process. The country that prides itself on having the mother of parliaments, is finally broadcasting live televised debates between the leaders of the main political parties in the run up the the 2010 general election.

Actually, after the first presidential debate in 1960, there was a hiatus of 16 years until the next debate in 1976. During this time three elections occurred.

When the debates did restart, they never achieved the popularity of that first occasion. The first US Presidential election debate 66 million viewers and that was from a total population of 179 million people.

The contestants candidates will no doubt have a host of body language experts and media guru's grooming them thoroughly. Their every move should act to indicate trustworthiness and approachability, good humor and utmost seriousness, intelligence and the common touch. That's even before they've opened their mouths! It's certainly a difficult balancing act.

You might be wondering if policy is all important at all. Drew Westen, an American professor of psychology, examined the way politicians communicate with their audiences and how we perceive their messages in his book, The Political Brain. His conclusions are many, but one key insight is that it is the emotional part of our brain, rather than the rational part that is key when politics is involved.

One of the most famous examples of this appeal to the rational that is cited by Westen occurred during the presidential debates of 2000. Al Gore made a detailed statement about the differences between Democrat/Republican policy. George W Bush's reply has now passed into political history: “Look, this is a man who has got great numbers, he talks about numbers. I'm beginning to think not only did he invent the Internet, but he invented the calculator. It's fuzzy math. It's the scaring, trying to scare people in the voting booth.” Gore may have been addressing the issue, but Bush's easy bonhomie by-passed the specifics and made a broad emotional appeal.

There's lots of advice for those taking part that's flying around the internet, but let's hope the candidates don't manage to short-circuit our brains with a sweet smile or sad sob story. There is some consolation for the British, the Americans have started calling for a Prime Minister's Question Time-style form of presidential interrogation

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Communication is one of the most pervasive forms of social interaction. In fact, it is deemed to be the most effective form of interaction. Communication is a process in which a speaker relays a message through a channel to a receiver, thus creating an effect and providing an opportunity for feedback in the presence of noise and occurring within a context.

Trenholm and Jensen defined communication as the process whereby humans collectively create and regulate social reality. What people say and do is connected with what others say and do. Therefore, what holds the society together is the ability of its members to act as a coordinated whole, which would be impossible without communication. On the other hand, communication presupposes social interaction. This cyclical process requires at least two people to mutually engage in creating meaning for communication to occur. This start is a kind of communication called interpersonal communication.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

White Man's Burden

The movie, Babel, tells its viewers an essential aspect of humankind that has always been ignored, underrated and disregarded: communication.

To relate it in my learnings, it could be recalled that the colonizers coined a term “The White Man’s Burden,” a term referring to the “responsibility” of the Whites to educate the Blacks because of their being backward in lifestyle, ideology, technology and basically the very African Culture. I think that this has always been the problem with the Americans. They think so straightforward and assuming that sometimes they cross beyond the limitations of the other cultures. Boosted with their ego, they think that they are superior more than any other culture or race here on Earth. They think that, there’s always an easy alternative to just get what they want neglecting the sensibility of their recipients. When colonizers invaded Africa, they may had thought that doing such could help Africa in a sense, sadly, it didn’t. It only made the things more complicated for these natives. Poor them. They were trapped in a cobweb that has no assurance or guarantee that these colonizers can bring the harmony in living and in life.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Yummy Hersheys!

Did you know that the famous Hershey's chocolate was actually created by Milton Hershey when he was eighteen?

The revolutionary American chocolate maker Milton Hershey opened his first candy shop in Philadelphia when he was eighteen. And even if he was young and he knew little of his business, still, his lack of experience caused his little ambition to fold more than five years later. It wasn't easy for Hershey. Yes he was able to sustain his candy shop for six years but he felt that his business lacked more. That's why he temporarily halted in his business and worked as an intern for a local caramel manufacturer. In there, he was able to learn that to achieve superior results, the freshest milk was to be used and thus was a lifelong dedication to quality ingredients was born – upon which he would later build his chocolate factory – now the ever famous Hershey Chocolate Company.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Grant Was Granted Greatest Male Star of All Time

Cary Grant was already a performer even before he began his acting career that spread his image across different movie screens around the world. Grant joined a mobile acrobatic troop because he was so desperate to escape the place where he grew up -- an unstable home life and the simple environment of Bristol, England. He became the troop's stilt walker. This position required him much difficult and painful practice before it could be mastered. On the duration when carnival life had taken their toll and when the excitement of going to carnivals of his native England had waned, Cary Grant quit his job for the stage. His starting roles, though relatively small, served to mark the start of what would become a successful career.

Cary Grant was noted as a debonair leading man, virile and handsome, charming and charismatic. He was awarded as the second Greatest Male Star of All Time of American cinema by the American Film Institute, after Humphrey Bogart. He was famous for his classic films like The Philadelphia Story, Bringing Up Baby, The Bishop's Wife and His Girl Friday.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Internet Culture and The Effect It Brings To People

The Internet culture has not been showing signs of slowing this trend – this fad toward the never ending quest for human communication even to places wherein real human contact is not possible. There are some people who find comfort when they are with their computers – online. Even if face-to-face interaction is not achieved, they still can seek friendship in cyberspace. Virtual friends gather at imaginary meeting places. In these cyber spaces, they interact with and among each other, they open topics for debates, they open themselves to the virtual public. It is no doubt, therefore, that relationships of all kinds are establish because of the Internet. But, the very fact that this form of communication emanates from distant participants, there is a real impact on this.

Because the interaction is no longer face-to-face, there is already lesser social accountability demanded of one who says something rude in an online chat room than of one who offends someone on face-to-face social gatherings. If one person says something awful online, the act would seem nearly free of consequences. The offender need no subjection to emotional discomfort that could possibly arise when the same situation occurs, only face-to-face.

Friday, July 4, 2008

More Digital on traffic

Eventually, anyone and everyone who runs a blog of their own face two issues. Firstly, how to get people to read the blog, and drive traffic. This is difficult, and can sometimes feel like something of an uphill struggle. The second challenge is how to turn the blog you spend hours on each day/week/month into a money-making website, taking the step from casual autobiography and commentary to an actual business.

So how does one solve these two problems? There are a thousand different blogs that cover similar issues, news, thoughts and opinions, and years into web 2.0, everything that could exist, usually does exist. Loads of blogging experts, from the 'Huffington Post Guide to Blogging' to Problogger.com, say the key is simply to find a subject and stick to it.

But sometimes it's just not that simple. Of course, there's a shed-load of advice on the internet – in fact, a blogger on the MoreDigital team recently spoke about traffic and using tags to generate more of it, and it's posts like these that construct a more realistic approach to making money out of a website. If you're willing to put the time in on the SEO side of things, it's going to be a far shorter haul out of the dungeons of internet obscurity and into the top pages on Digg and Reddit.

There's a ton of ways to start raking in hits and correlating that with cash generated as a result, from text adverts to Google AdSense, which proves there are methods out there that aren't out to scam the visitors to your site. So if I was to write a post about the new Xbox 360 (to pick a current topic out of thin air) and send it to every aggregate site and use fifty different relevant tags, the hits would indeed start flooding in. However, if I then choreographed it with a few relevant adverts and text ad links, I reckon I could make a decent amount of money.

The main challenge is finding a way to do that for many different posts on a daily basis. It's not an easy task constantly creating engaging and well-researched, in-depth content that's light enough for a wide-ranging readership demographic, whilst maintaining enough detail to obtain a cult popularity and social standing within the journalistic community for that particular industry.

So now all that's left is to start working up a plan, and in the mean time, use the advice of the Moredigital.com blogging crew alongside other sources, and begin to work up my web presence. World domination and financial super-success await me! To the keyboard! Oh, wait...