Mind Over Media





3 hours/day of tv =
3 hours/day of radio =
3 hours/day of exposure to billboards and product advertising =
3 hours/week of movies =
3 hours/week of magazines/newspapers =
3 hours/week of commercial Internet =
3 hours/week of talking about media subjects =

the stats are no mystery.
add to or subtract from the above. arrive at your own numbers.

thousands of hours each year immersed in media.
living in it. not in the world.
when not attending directly to it, we replay it in our heads.
rehearsing movie roles, tv characters.
thinking about them.
fantasizing. fixated on them.
pop stars. celebrities. rock and roll idols.
supermodels. news anchors. people in ads.

trying to look like them.
trying to act like them.
repeating their words to ourselves.
thinking their thoughts.
we like to believe we can resist their hold on us.

it’s easier when you see it in another group.
kids, for example.

forget the subliminal issues.
just look at the surface.
look at what’s obvious.

looking at what’s obvious.

occasionally, for a moment at a time, pay attention to your thoughts. how would you describe them? ordered? rational? do they seem to be a big jumble of adolescent rambling, low-level bitching, self-criticism, obsessive-compulsive spontaneous repetitions of pieces of previous thoughts, parts of old scripts, generally negative self-image-wise? what could be causing this?

many hundreds of commercial messages a day enter our minds. do we have that many ordered, edited, professionally produced personal thoughts in a day? do ordered, edited, professionally produced, manipulative commercial messages seem more coherent than our normal thoughts?

imagine one’s self-image being molded from an early age by commercial messages. one’s self-image is a pretty deep part of oneself, wouldn’t you say? how about what we think of others? does what we think of others seem affected, colored, influenced by commercial messages of what is the ideal way to be? do the commercial representations of the ideal way to be seem to affect our self-image as they do our judgement of others? how about what we think of the world and our place in it? affected, influenced by commercial messages?


I don’t say much about mass-media subjects because I like to keep things positive in public. However, I maintain a site which indicates the direction of my thinking as regards things that fall under the broad categories of “entertainment” and “popular culture”. The site is used as a resource for my students to get started on critical-thinking projects on these and related subjects. Here’s a page from the site:



Filed under ARTology Now

4 responses to “Mind Over Media

  1. Kayla Z

    I know for myself that things I like are affected by the media and advertising even if I don’t want them to be. For a while I may not be a fan of some of the new trends or fashion that are coming out but with time these trends and fashion looks tend to grow on me and I eventually like some (not all) of these products. It is crazy how with all these ads and the uses of persuasion can eventually change people’s views on things to get them to buy their product or believe in certain things. I think every person is affected by the media and over time is constantly being slightly changed by all these advertisements that are out there.

  2. Amanda S

    Media is all around us. We almost cannot help but allow our minds to be engulfed by the media. Our world is made up of Media. Billboards announcing new products, must-see TV shows, this lovely new outfit that is a MUST HAVE. It is almost petrifying that we almost cannot think for ourselves anymore. As I witnessed personally; media can really take affect on your mind. I won’t think I like a certain style of clothing. However, the more I see it on commercials or billboards, etc. I decided “maybe it won’t look so bad.” Then, before you know it I am wearing that style I thought was horrendous a few months prior. Media has more affect on our lives than we tend to realize.

  3. Eileen Escalante

    In my opinion the media has a strong influenced on society both negatively and positively. The media is all around us and what surrounds us will have an effect in some manner.I feel negative effects are stronger of the consistency used to pound this negatively into society’s mind. There is no doubt that the media influences us and affect the way we act and think.

  4. This picture represents how today’s media is getting in people’s minds thanks to technological advances it is impossible not to be attracted to it. Although we all use it, there are people who over use it. Social media has turned to an everyday activity of our lives, it keep us informed and in contact with the world. However over exposure can sometimes be dangerous and jeopardize one’s privacy. Also, over exposure is impacting young user’s minds and the way they think, act, and express themselves.

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