These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: AUGUST 2017

August, damn girl you hit me full speed! Where did you come and go? This month has been absolutely hectic. Uni has well and truly kicked in, I’ve been working like crazy, and had my weekends booked out all month! It’s kinda terrifying as we head into September… before we know it I’ll be graduating! WTF?! But for the time being, let’s have a look at what August has delivered.

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🇧🇷 Andre!

My amazing Brazilian friend Andre came to visit for a few days. I met Andre 6 years ago, way back when we were in year 11 Earth and Environmental Science class! I remember being completed amazed that he was from Brazil… the other side of the world! As good friends do, we kept in touch, skyped from time to time, and when it came to him planning his trip back to Australia, of course he had to come and visit the beautiful gong! Next time I see you Andre, it’ll be in Brazil I promise!

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HELLOOO ANDRE

🎤 The Last Frost

Wollongong has been delivering the goods lately when it comes to gigs. And this month it held an awesome little festival featuring Violent Soho! So for those of you who know me, they’re one of my fave bands ever and this was the 4th time I’ve seen them. It was so so so much fun! That was until my boyfriend Mitch got whacked across the head with a flying chair (yep – there’s flying chairs in a Violent Soho mosh pit) (and yep, I have a bf, that’s a new thing. But more on that later). Regardless of the blood, sweat and tears (literally), it was an awesome night!

 

 

 

 

🏆 Fitness

I’ve been trying to keep up with my friend Dylan, and have been rock climbing from time to time. As you can clearly see, I’ve got huge guns and am therefore an expert rock climber (hahahaha nervous laugh….).

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This month I also survived the CITY 2 SURF! Considering I did absolutely zero training, I’m pretty proud of my efforts. I ran with my friend Chloe (though she sped ahead Lightning McQueen style) and with my dad and sister. It was such a fun day! This is the second one I’ve done and can honestly say (hopefully) that next year I’ll actually train for it! I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in fitness/wants to enjoy a nice day out in Sydney!

 

 

 

 

🌸 Grounds of Alexandria

Really? Need I say more….

 

 

 

 

🌅 Watching the sun rise

One of the perks of having your boyfriend wake up at 5am everyday (yep, this boyfriend thing is pretty great), is that you’re up and starting your day before the sun has even had a chance to rise. Which means over the past month I’ve seen some pretty beautiful sunrises. I’ve always wanted to be a morning person… much to the disbelief of my Mum… but I think I may be getting there. Just check out these 3 beautiful sunrises I saw this month! Watch this space for more!

 

 

 

 

🎶 Tunes

Tired Lion – Fresh. I first heard this song on Triple J and I desperately tried to Shazam it. Luckily for me, this song is such a great one, that it’s been played multiple times as of late and I’m absolutely in love! They’re kick ass and I have had this song on repeat!

Meg Mac – Low Blows. With the release of her new album and an upcoming Australian tour (which I have tickets for – eep!!!), I’ve been freakin loving Meg Mac! She’s got such an amazing voice and her sound is so unique and fabulous.

Nicky Jam – Hasta el amancer. Because it’s winter and I’m soooo over this cold weather, I’ve been reliving my Central American vibes by listening to Nicky Jam. What tunes he has! Honestly if you want a pick me up and

🎥 Flicks

So I just got Stan (an Australian version of Netflix) and ooh la la there’s some pretty great shows! And one of them is Younger. Um hello Hilary Duff is in this show!! But it’s actually a super cute and funky show that is perfect watching for those of you who have been looking for the modern version of Sex and the City.

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The Other Guy is another show on Stan and it’s some of the best TV I’ve EVER SEEN! If you’re a young Australian, this show will actually make you laugh out loud it’s tragically hilarious.

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📷 Bloggers and Vloggers

My blogger friend Journal by Assia has been producing the goods on her blog. Some of my favourite posts have been from Bulgaria and at the moment she’s in Palestine and I cannot wait to see her content from her travels there.

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📗Books

Bad News – Anjan Sundaram

I borrowed this book from my friend that studies Journalism and damn this book in incredible. It’s about dying journalism in Rwanda, a country that to the Western World, is seen as progressive country. It highlights the incredible importance of free press and high quality journalists to hold governments accountable.

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📝 Quote

This month I’ve really been trying to focus on the positive in life. It’s so easy to get caught up in drama, in negativity and in stuff that just adds pressure, stress and shit to your life. Of course life sometimes gives you a shit hand, but your attitude is a powerful thing you can control. Once you decide to be happy, you will notice that other negative parts of your life tend to slip away and you’ll feel more free and fabulous enough you’ll wanna shake yo booty everywhere.

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Well I have absolutely zero idea where this month disappeared to, and before you know it, I’ll be recapping on the entire year! It’s been a whirlwind and looking at my diary, September won’t be any different! Peace and love.

Ethics: the good, the bad and the ugly

The BBC defines ethics as ‘a system of moral principles, affecting how people make their decision and lead their lives,’ and put simply, the way in which we determine what is good and what is bad. Ethics are particularly relevant to the media, especially with journalists (professional, free-lance or amateur) being a prominent presence in areas of conflict. Ethics are important to ensure that we as a society understand what is acceptable and adhere to those standards to ensure peace and understanding. If only it were that simple.

If Dumbledore says it, it must be right
If Dumbledore says it, it must be right

A significant problem associated with ethics are their subjectivity. Standards of ethics depend on various different factors such as; ‘discipline, political system, legal system, religious/social system, research content, setting/institution and time in history’ (McCutcheon, 2015). Factoring in these aspects,  an act that appears ethical and good to one person, may be bad and unethical to another. A recent example of how media ethics are not universal and can be misunderstood is the imprisonment of Al Jazeera staff in December of 2013.

Greste, along with two other Al Jazeera staff, were arrested in Cairo, Egypt for ‘broadcasting news which was damaging to national security by meeting with recently declared terrorist group, The Muslim Brotherhood’ (BBC, 2013). To the Egyptian government, their work was completely unethical. Illegally meeting with a terrorist group which was interpreted as ‘damaging.’ Whereas the Al Jazeera staff were looking to uncover the truth in a conflict ridden area. A movement to free Peter Greste with the slogan ‘telling the truth is not terrorism,’ and the hashtag of FreeAJStaff went viral, however in this case the Egyptian court viewed the ‘truth’ as terrorism.

Free AJ staff

The Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance Journalist’ Code of Ethics states standards to do with accuracy and honesty to upkeep image and credibility. The first standard is ‘report and interpret honestly, do not suppress relevant available facts.’ This guideline can be interpreted in various ways such as; Peter Greste and the Al Jazeera staff were trying to uncover the truth and did nothing wrong, or, the facts and information were not readily available and breached this code of ethics, or violated the political ethics of their host country, Egypt and thus their imprisonment is justified.

A problem with media ethics is that there are no ‘fixed right answers’ (Gordon, 1996). For example, the code of ethics mentioned above are are similar yet different to the Al Jazeera code of ethics, which are different to the Telegraph’s code of conduct. With all these different ethical codes, how are we supposed to know what is right or wrong? Ethical or unethical?

We need ethics to get by in life as smoothly as possible, but we cannot impose our personal ethics on others and must understand that ethics are subjective from people, institutions and countries.

Further Information 

Controversies with journalism ethics can be seen in many media stories;

Julian Asange and WikiLeaks.

References

BBC, 2013 Egypt Crisis: Al Jazeera journalists arrested in Cairo, http://Http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-25546389, accessed 29 March 2015

Gordon, D., Kittross, J.M., Reuss, C. & Merrill, J.C. 1996,Controversies in media ethics, Longman, White Plains, N.Y.

McCutcheon, M. 2015 Research Ethics, BCM210, University of Wollongong, accessed 29 March 2015

Ward, S.J.A. 2013, Global Media Ethics: Problems and Perspectives, Wiley-Blackwell, GB.

Climate Change and Media Reporting: Where fairness, isn’t fair at all

‘One issues that will define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other, and that is the urgent and growing threat of a changing climate’ – delivered by President Barack Obama at the 2014 Climate Summit where the Australian Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, failed to attend. 

Climate Change not only affects Polar Bears, but us too. http://socialjournalism.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/climateChange.jpg
Climate Change not only affects Polar Bears, but us too.
http://socialjournalism.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/climateChange.jpg

Climate Change is an phenomenon which effects all of us here on Earth. We all know that the seas are rising, ice sheets are melting and glaciers are retreating. Climate Change is an issue that is bigger than one person or one country and therefore can be difficult to understand and tackle (Dreher, 2014). A problem affecting our ideas and knowledge about climate change and the facts behind it is the media, specifically the role of journalists. Without media coverage of these issues, the majority of the world would not not it was occurring. According to the US-based Society of Professional Journalism (SJP), Ward outlines that journalists ‘should be honest, fair and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting information’ (Ward, 2009). The general public put a lot of trust and faith in journalists that they are abiding by these outlines, however, being ‘fair’ doesn’t always mean being fair towards the issue.

The video above illustrates the concept of ‘false balance’ in order to appear ‘fair.’ Dreher describes false balance as ‘equal space, time, weighting to views who are skeptical,’ where their views are amplified and thus appear legitimate to audiences. The end of this video demonstrates the reality of the number of scientists who believe and acknowledge climate change- 99% vs. 1 skeptic. If the media was reporting these numbers, perhaps more of the general public would acknowledge the effects of climate change and be more inspired to act and take responsibility. In this case, is it ok that journalists dismiss the outline to be ‘fair’ and instead, be fair towards the issue they’re reporting on? I believe it is justified.

Perhaps we as the audience could consider the value that blogs offer to our knowledge of an issue. Whilst there is debate about the credibility of bloggers, it doesn’t detract from some blogs excelling in their field of expertise. Top Climate Change Blogs like Real Climate are written by climate scientists and their information is backed by scientific research. Blogs provide a platform for scientists to express their knowledge, research and opinions, and maybe more and more scientists will take to blogging because news sources won’t publish or will mislead their voices and information.

Real Climate Blog http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/
Real Climate Blog
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/
Where Real Climate get their information/data from http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/
Where Real Climate get their information/data from
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/
They reference weather stations, independent research, models and centres with experience and expert knowledge. http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/
They reference weather stations, independent research, models and centres with experience and expert knowledge.
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/

The media is in a state of changing and the value of publishing online is becoming more and more prominent and respected. With climate change being an immediate and detrimental threat to our earth, it is crucial that we hear the truth about these issues and are not mislead by journalists or news companies, so that we can begin to act. I believe the debate about whether or not climate change is occurring should be well and truly over. Instead, we should be debating what and how we can combat it, so that future generations can enjoy the beauty our world has to offer.

References

Dreher, T 2014, BCM111 ‘Global Crises, Global News: Pacific Calling Partnership’, lecture notes, accessed 08/10/2014, University of Wollongong.

Romm, J 2007,  Climate Change Progress,Top 10 Climate Change Blogs’,  accessed 12 October 2014, http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2007/08/28/201810/top-ten-climate-change-blogs/

Ward, B 2009, Ethics and Environmental Politics ‘Journalism ethics and climate change reporting in a period of intense media uncertainty, Vol. 9: 13-15