Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Blog post #10

Posted by elisechaplin on September 24, 2017

It’s weird to think that companies originally don’t think of their audience as actual human beings. The survival of any company or product relies on the popularity it shares with its customers. Companies listening and changing due to the comments of their audience is important and necessary. I didn’t know that companies had ways to understand what people are saying about them online. I think it is important that the audience is always thought of in some way because with social media today, a few bad comments with funny memes attached about some product can go a long way. I think it is interesting to think about the different ways that companies can reach out to their audience because there are so many possibilities with social media. And people today expect to see more online and social media centered advertisements and what not because that is where most of their time is spent. If I really think about all the advertisements I see on a daily basis just on social media or websites, it’d be in the hundreds. Sometimes I don’t even realize something is being advertised when it really is. And every time I see a video or tweet about a product that I like and I decide to share it with other people, I’m taking part of that process. And if I share something negative about a company or product then I’m also participating in the process of having companies know that something is wrong with their product.


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blog post 9; public relations

Posted by megisbell on September 24, 2017

Public relations in media is HUGE. Always, always, and I mean always I will see ads for things that I’m interested in on just about every single social media site. Twitter and Instagram both have paid advertisements every 10 posts I feel like. If it’s not a product, it’s a song or a movie. Advertising is everywhere but it for sure does work. Celebrities are basically magic when it comes to advertising. SO many companies have celebrities endorsing their product(s).  I know when my favorite celebs are promoting something I want to look into it or even buy it. The product may be terrible but if someone like Beyonce is saying it’s good then odds are people will buy it. Celebrities have the upper hand. They have money, so the product has to be worth it, right? If Kanye wears it, then I need to wear it, right? I feel like this is what goes through the heads of most of us. If you say it isn’t, then I’m pretty convinced you’re lying. Everyone has fallen for that trap at least once.

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Blog #10: Complaints and Customer Service

Posted by clarkhinkson on September 24, 2017

The stereotype of customer service representatives being unhelpful, ignorant, and apathetic to the customer’s concerns I have known for a long time. In fact, one episode of “The Looney Tunes Show” deals with a cable provider pranking and frustrating Bugs Bunny as he attempts to watch basketball playoffs. The episode is extremely entertaining and speaks to the truth that companies’ customer service is just not helpful the majority of the time it is contacted. However, the essay “Listening and Empathizing” introduced me to an entirely new aspect of that stereotype.

This new aspect I found was the separation of the different compartments of corporate companies. The essay basically says that the organizations or service providers are not unified. Of course the company as a whole has the same basic goal to provide a service to consumers and make money, but when the company is broken down into its distinct sections, the goals and executives differ greatly. The different parts of the company barely have any contact with each other, and the company resembles a family tree: if you trace it back far enough, it all goes back to the same place, but before you get there, the separations are countless. The individual roles of each specific service are completely separate from the rest of the company. As the essay says, each type of customer interaction – websites, complaints, installations – is handled by a different team and person in charge, making the customer experience disjointed and unfocused.

I think this problem forces the question: are big businesses actually good for consumers, or would consolidation and compactness be better?

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Extra Credit: Lipstick and Dynamite

Posted by daneilclark on September 24, 2017

Watching Lipstick and Dynamite, this documentary focuses on the careers of six women who forever influenced and changed the future for women’s wrestling.

Starting with describing the beginning of wrestling in the 1930s. By the 1940’s, American men had to leave the country to fight in WWII, leaving the pressure to females to take over the sport. Not taken seriously, women’s wrestling was seen as a side show and was banned in several states.

The Fabulous Moolah, one of the six women interviewed, started her career working with Billy Wolfe, a professional wrestling promoter, and his wife Mildred Burke, who was also a wrestler and a trainer. She won the NWA World Women’s Championship in 1956 and held that title for 28 years.

Mae Young, another woman wrestler, is considered as one of the pioneers in women’s wrestling as she helped increased it’s popularity throughout the 1940’s while men went to war.

The 1960’s, or better known as the “heyday of women’s wrestling,” and by this time the sport became more accepted and gain popularity.

But wrestling didn’t come without it’s challenges for these six females. They shared tales of being exploited financially, had unruly fans and even were physically abused.

When we watched one of Bayley’s, a female wrestler for the WWE, I saw the difference from the clips that they showed in Lipstick and Dynamite. WWE matches are fake, even though dedicated fans will disagree with you. The matches between the original lady wrestlers and the interviews of the wrestlers, they weren’t faked. They took the blows, the punches, the kicks and often took more damage than did.

It was an interesting and awesome documentary to watch and to listen to the interviews by these kick-ass, rad ladies.

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Blog Post #10

Posted by daneilclark on September 24, 2017

In the article, Advocating for New Management Logics in Marketing and Corporate Communications, on page 285, it goes into a section from the Audience Perspective.

Business corporate’s do not empathize with their external audiences instead of focusing on the profit and business side of it they could have a better, long lasting and successful relationship with their external audiences.

Word of mouth, an example talked about in the article, ‘is the oldest and must influential form of marketing’ (287) but word of mouth has since changed since the birth of the internet.

It reminds me of the website Yelp. Yelp is a crowd sourced local business review and social networking site. You can review almost anything i.e., products or services of restaurants, businesses and even schools for that matter.

Yelp is the probably one of the perfect examples of word to mouth, internet wise. If you were dissatisfied, you can still tell people but the most effective way to hurt a business is by submitting a review, tweeting directly at them or tagging them in a Facebook post, especially if you have a large following base.

Celebrities powers come into play here as well. Celebrities have such a powerful platform to use their voice. We live in a world where we worship celebrities and everything that they stand for and some of us might eventually changing our views and beliefs based off that one celebrity that can influence us the most.

Businesses that actually emphasize with their external audiences, can take word to mouth, satisfied or dissatisfied, and see what works and what doesn’t, can improve their businesses.

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Blog #10

Posted by pmrobertson on September 24, 2017

It is so interesting how corporations become solely focused on the financial portion that they overshadow the creative labor. Honestly, so many people in today’s society only care for money, which is why they treat customers as statistics on a piece of paper. They fail to see them as human beings, which is pretty sad. It seems like money runs the world. If you ask people what they want to do when they grow up, you will often hear people say they want to make a lot of money. It feels as though less people are focused on getting a job because they actually want to do it. Personally, I have talked to so many people that hate their jobs, but they stay because it pays well. It’s awful to hear what people have come to, but money has become such a big part of life in America. It is possible to live a good life without money, but so many people fail to see how life can be good without the material things.

The reading also discussed how corporate communication has become “fractured” from the customer’s perspective. After the example of cable television, I completely see how this is true. I recently ran into a similar problem a couple weeks ago. I dialed the company’s number and the automated voice took way longer than it should’ve. If I would’ve been able to talk to a real person, the issue would’ve been resolved much faster. Once someone finally picked up since the automated voice was not helping me find what I was looking for, I was transferred to about three different lines. In the end, the person I needed to speak to didn’t even pick up the phone. I tried calling multiple times over the course of a few days, because it was urgent. I even left a voicemail and they never got back to me. As a customer, the communication of the company was very frustrating. Something needs to be done about this. Companies need to become more aware of their audiences and set up a better way of communication or else small things like this will just continue to upset customers.

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Blog Post #10

Posted by kaitpr on September 24, 2017

From this reading the main point I got is that companies are a lot more hectic and intricate then I thought. I always knew that companies were complicated systems with many layers dealing with different aspects of the company. This section talked about how companies fight over resources and how gets the certain projects. There was fear of the spread of ideas in case the idea may “mess things up.” People may have worked together and not even know each other. It seems like these companies are in need of an update on their protocols. I think that maybe this popularity growth of social media may help the separate parts of the business become more intertwined. Like the article said they have had to change things about how their company works to cater to their broader audience. I hope this will help them decide to do some changes to their company as a whole because based on a majority of this article it sounds like mayhem in a large company. Though this article does touch on cynicism on when thing try to change. I understand this change is hard and can be annoying, but I think in the long run, making these people communicate more it will help the community. I think that the company would run smoother and in the end would have a higher income because of it.

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Blog Post #9

Posted by kaitpr on September 24, 2017

I thought the idea of “publics” in the article was an interesting idea. It seems more realistic for companies to think of their customer as having a life outside of the product they are selling to them. This idea reminds me of something I feel like is becoming more and more common is having ads based on what websites you are going to. For example if I go to a shoe website and spend some time on it. The next day I will see that same show store come up on my Instagram as an ad. I think this helps make ads more relevant to the customer. If you think back, ads in newspapers could have never done, the ads were the same on every copy.  Yes, they were probably local businesses, but still maybe one would be relevant to the reader. Now days the ads could change hourly and are usually catered as closely as they can, to the reader. It is weird to think that apps are watching your web traffic and seeing what sights are visited. If I am being honest I have stopped on my feed to watch a video or scroll through pictures of an ad, or even like a picture of that is an ad thinking that it was just part of my feed. So, I think that this PR technique is working, this idea of “publics.”

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Blog post #7

Posted by willwise4929 on September 23, 2017

It’s no secret that fans of the WWE have long had an influence on the performance and storyline of the WWE. In a media where fans are very actively encouraged to come down to local shows and participate in them it’s no surprise the amount of participation the WWE receives. So much so that the audience has almost taken a bit of control away from the writers in a sense that fans reactions can not only affect ratings, but the opinions of the people watching from their couches at home.

This participatory culture has lead to many changes in storylines simply based on the audience’s reactions, and means careful consideration has to be taken by the script writers in order to ensure the fans are happy. In WWE the fans are really the most important aspect, as without them there would be no show. Without a live audience it would be a bad show for the folks at home, and without an at home audience there wouldn’t be a very big draw for the live shows and whole lot less revenue. This means that above everything, they need to keep their fanbase alive and well and happy. To do this, they must at least somewhat go with what the fans want, which can only be determined by their reactions during and after shows.

The writers take these reactions and make the necessary changes, but what happens when the audience is so upset by something happening in the ring at that very moment that they just completely flip on the scriptwriters, completely changing their views and beliefs on the whole situation? This is where the script writers jobs become difficult, as they have to keep up with an ever changing and possibly unpredictable audience reaction.

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Blog Post 6

Posted by willwise4929 on September 23, 2017

The fans in the stands of wrestling matches are just as influential and important as the scripts themselves. Without the added reality of the fans’ participation the script would be flat and unbelievable. The article compares this to something like revealing the falsehood of something like Santa Clause to a child, and that without fan participation the acting would become very unbelievable and also the illusion would be broken for the fans who do believe.

The article also raises the topic of just how much fans get into it. The fact that even though most fans know it isn’t real, and are still able to get as into it and act as fanatic and out of control as they do says something. Something about the way wrestling is portrayed allows the audience get into it as if it’s real. This says something as you examine the running themes and ways things are portrayed in wrestling, especially during it’s peak in the early 2000s to 2012 or so. The violence and toxic masculinity portrayed in this era of wrestling must have had a huge effect on the audience. Whether or not the audience knows it’s real, the fact that they’re getting into it as if it is real is putting the ideals and actions into their heads.

In conclusion, the way wrestling portrays their scripts in a realistic way and get’s the audience to participate as if it was real affects the way the way the audience perceives the events.

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