Media as Artifacts

free essayWhen it comes to getting knowledge through the Internet, TED talks is one of the most popular projects as it delivers relevant and effective information that can apply to any side of life. That is why I have selected this topic for the course. TED platform is one of those phenomena that bring only quality content and can change millions of people’s lives. These talks are usually made by famous people who are on the edge of glory. As for me, I always follow the updates of TED videos to see new inspirational discussions about education, politics, careers, and ecology. As for the relevance of the form of presentation, I have chosen TED as it is frequently posted on YouTube, which is a global video hosting and social network where one can get gigabytes of information as well as share his or her mind with others. The last but not the least is a scope of work that stands behind TED talks: numerous groups of people from all around the world gather, communicate, and share their ideas in order to organize TED talks and pass their message to others. I think TED talks and YouTube is an excellent quintessence to raise awareness and pay attention to governmental problems, educational difficulties, and any other social issues that require discussion. In addition, TED is a great platform where people can exchange their beliefs, theories, inspirational speeches, and share effective practice to help other people.

It is hard to neglect one of the main functions of the Internet, which is to build the so-called “bridge” between different groups of people. However, it is also very important to pay attention to the forms and means of communication through the Web. To maintain relevance and bring enough attention to the needed topic, one should chose an appropriate platform. No doubts, modern social networks are one of the most effective channels to spread any type of information: no matter whether someone wants to raise sales in his online shop or invite more people to see new videos. Thus, one of the secrets to make a connection between an individual and the society is to choose the right and relevant platform.

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Another effective method that helps to unite an individual and the viewers is to share personal experience. TED talks are all about personal knowledge, stories, and occasions since they always captivate people, and if they are told in bright, professional, and inspirational way, many people will definitely be attracted and interested in seeing more.

The usage of Bronfenbrenner’s systems approach as well as any other educational concept shows that TED talks influence micro-, meso-, exo-, and macro- forms of one’s personal ecology. According to Bronfenbrenner (2009), micro-system is the one that comes from family. In this regard, TED can bring many advantages, as it is proved that if parents listen to motivational speakers and psychological trainings, their children tend to be more inspired too. In addition, they have clear goals and understanding of what they want to do (both in their hobby and professional life).

It should be mentioned that TED talks are successfully used in educational process in schools and universities all over the world in such a way affecting the meso-system of people’s personal ecology. For instance, these inspirational talks are a great tool to learn or revise foreign languages. Besides, once children, adolescents or adults start to discuss the experience that had been shared to them, they receive their own understanding locked in their communication and opinion changing.

The third system by Bronfenbrenner that can be applied to personal ecology is exo-system. It is responsible for “adult social organizations” – the one that uses theatres, festivals, and other social activities to get people together. In the case of TED talks, it is a huge event that usually gathers from 1,000 to 5,000 people (it depends on the country and the committee). Networking is not the last advantage of such events: people can find a business companion, a partner for jogging, or a mate to attend French language courses.

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The last system that affects personal ecology in a great way is macro-system that concerns cultural events, celebrations, and traditions. It is hard to overrate the importance of traditions: people wait for Christmas, Mother’s Day, Thanksgiving, or Birth Day as these holidays imply certain activities. Everything from get-togethers to such ritual as giving presents form a macro-system in one’s personal ecology.

Certainly, my personal ecology is based on all the systems described by Bronfenbrenner. However, I think that meso- and exo-system influence me more than the other two, because I am keen on sharing my own experience with other people and discover the possibilities of participation in social organizations. As for the meso-system in particular, I remember that I liked to communicate and share experience back in the primary and high school. In terms of the exo-system, I am convinced there is no better way but to practice your educational initiatives or any business skills with others to get feedback and to deliver something new to your own experience.

Discussing the project’s anticipation and integration, it should be mentioned that I have an intention to organize TED talks in my city bringing meaningful and relevant topics to discuss. To become persuasive and effective, I have decided to pay attention to the works of Farrow and Berger. According to Farrow (2003), one can be persuasive if he or she follows three conditions. First, any speaker must be self-confident. It does not imply the speaker’s professional background confidence, but his own confidence as a self. Farrow claims that if a speaker is not confident, it does not matter how relevant the presented information is. The second issue he pays attention to is information itself: if it is interesting, relevant, and can be applied in practice, the speaker will have success. The last but not the least important issue that scientist outlines is passion that the speaker should have once he or she is trying to deliver his message to the audience. Undoubtedly, these three principles of persuasive speech when sharing experience must be taken into account if one wants to deliver any messages clearly and effectively.

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As for Berger’s theory, the author claims there are two factors that influence the perception of any information (2008). First, there is a need to pay attention to the form of information and thus video and audio-speeches are one of the most effective forms of communication between the individual and social groups. Another factor that Berger mentions is the relevance of the material given. Nowadays people receive a huge flow of information, which not necessarily is valuable, so only precise and relevant information that could be applied in practice is successfully perceived by the audience.

In addition, one has to pay attention to Bennett’s emphasis on evolving forms of media and practice. Nowadays, it is hard to overrate the importance of World Wide Web and the author urges people to use any tools that the Internet offers to deliver and share their experience (2008). Only 20 years ago, it was almost impossible to imagine that someone could communicate via such application as Skype and even sends photos, texts, or any other type of content in a no time. However, due to YouTube and other popular video hosting websites, one is now able to share information in a few minutes.

According to Bennett, video is one of the most effective ways to deliver any type of political or social message. This format helps to draw attention with the variety of its form, case, or type. In other words, video content could be a great quintessence of a strong text, emotional background, and gesture that helps to deliver information in the most effective way. However, YouTube is significantly different from TV as the user must choose the video content to watch once he or she enters YouTube service platform. On the one hand, it provides more freedom and gives a wide range of information to choose from and to watch. On the other hand, some users may not want to make any choice and just want to turn on a channel (a TV channel or Internet channel) and percept the given information.

Due to YouTube services, all TED talks are gathered together in playlists that vary in duration, topics, and language. Such variety implies that people from different countries around the world are able to watch videos and get information from TED talks on the topics of their interest in the language they understand. What is more, YouTube as an up-to-date service offers many modern features too. One of them is subtitles, so even if there is no needed language available, one can turn on the subtitles and watch the video.

Bennett (2008) claims that modern services assist people in delivering and understanding information in a better way. For instance, war is a rather painful topic for many countries, but philosophical and theoretical TED talks can increase people’s awareness of these topics and outline some essential points for discussion. Most importantly, in order to successfully pass the message, one has to pay attention not only to the topics that will be discussed, but also to the way it will be done.

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Considering a plan to gather evidence, one should keep track of the types and the frequency of evidence. In this case, evidence tends to be search engine tool. For example, if one speaks about types of evidence, it is possible to find the needed TED talks on YouTube by applying special filters. Sorting out the received information by duration of the video or its popularity (the number of views), one can see the video he or she was looking for.

When it comes to reflecting and analyzing, one has to start with codes. Any information is coded, and in order to read and understand it properly, a person has to decode it, which is achieved by using own patterns and habits. However, this process may sometimes be quite tricky since people tend to perceive information from through the lenses of their biases and prejudices. For instance, the appearance of the speaker often influences the way the audience perceives him or her. Thus, a professor in glasses could be taken as a dull person, and on the contrary, a blond girl in a short dress can be seen as a non-serious speaker.

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To achieve understanding between an individual and a social group, it is essential to be aware of the approach to democratic practice. The definition of democratic is one voice. Thus, any democratic approach implies that a person has the freedom of voice and can express his or her opinion in any form.

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