4. WHAT ARE MEDIA MESSAGES?
• Media messages contain information and ideas that are
shared to a large audience of people.
• If these are not scrutinized properly, they may become
agents of misinformation and lead people to form
wrong judgment and images on the subject of the
wrongly presented media message.
• By critically evaluating media messages, we ensure
that the ideas presented are accurate, relevant, and
appropriate to be posted or shared with everyone.
5. “EVALUATING MESSAGES”
• Why do we evaluate messages?
*The importance of evaluating the
effectiveness of the messages is by
developing and using strategic questions to
identify strengths and weaknesses
6. “STRATEGIES FOR EVALUATING A
How do we evaluate messages?
– In order to evaluate whether a message is
effective, we can ask ourselves a series of
questions which reflect a message’s
simplicity, specificity, structure and
7. “FOUR MAIN QUALITIES FOR AN EFFECTIVE
8. 1. SIMPLICITY
• In order to ensure that the messages have simplicity,
we should ask ourselves two questions:
• – is the purpose evident?
• – Is the core message clear?
9. 2. SPECIFICITY
*Refers to our choices of language and its usage on order to
ensure language is specific we may ask ourselves:
– Is language specific?
– is language concrete, rather than abstract?
– Does it use words which have additional meanings and could
perhaps be misconstrued?
10. 3. STRUCTURE
*Ideas should be organized and easy to follow.
– Does the messages have a STRUCTURE?
– is there a more effective way to arrange the
12. • “EVALUATING IMAGES”
• It is important to critically evaluate images you use for research.
Study and presentation images should be evaluated like any
other source, such as journal articles or books, to determine
their quality, reliability and appropriateness. Visual analysis
is an important step in evaluating an image and understanding
Three steps of evaluating an image and these are:
1. Identifying Source
2. Interpret contextual information
3. Understand implications
17. • “CONTENT ANALYSIS”
What do you see?
What is the image all about?
Are their people in the image?
What are they doing?
How are they presented?
Can the image be looked at different ways?
How effective is the image as a visual message?
21. “VISUAL ANALYSIS”
• How is the image composed?
• What is in the background and what is in the
• What are the most important visual?
22. • “IMAGE SOURCE”
• Where did you find the image?
• What information does the source provide about the
origins of the image?
• Is the source reliable and trustworthy?
• Was the image found in an image database or was it
being use in another context to convey meaning?
23. • “TECHNICAL QUALITY”
• Is the image large enough to suit your purpose?
• Are the color, light and balance, true?
• Is the image a quality digital image without pixelation or
• Is the image in a file format you can use?
24. • “CONTEXTUAL INFO”
• What information accompanies the image?
• Does the text change how you see the image? How?
• Is the textual information intended to be factual an inform or is
intended to influence what and how you see?
• What kind of context does the information provide?
• Does it answer the questions where, how and why
25. To evaluate messages and images of different types of text
reflecting different culture the following should do:
1. Understand how the specified cultures live.
2. How the people in the specified group communicate each
3. Learn the symbolism of their culture.
4. Be aware in every detail such as artifact, language, and
5. Get the meanings being addressed by the images
6. Get the important elements conveyed by the images
7. Getting the audience for the images
27. Additional tips in evaluating images;
1. Get the meanings being addressed by the
2. Get the important elements conveyed by the
3. Getting the audience for the images
29. The interactions between non-verbal and
verbal forms of communication, more in
particular the relations between visual
symbols other than writing and the recording
of speech in writing, are important for the
evaluation of both images and texts.
30. According to some, medieval images may be ‘read’. According to others, the
perception of images is fundamentally different from that of texts.
• Do images have a morphology (colours, lines, planes), a syntax and semantics
of their own?
• In other words: do both texts and images have a ‘grammar’? Is it useful to speak
of ‘visual literacy’?
• Can texts be considered as images?
• How are texts and images perceived?
• Do they communicate different kinds of messages?
• Can an image’s message be put into words?
• In which social contexts does medieval man prefer the visual to the textual?
• What about the interplay of texts and images (e.g. in rituals and ceremonies)?
• Do we observe an evolution in the perception of images due to the development
of a literate mentality?
Reading Images and Texts
Medieval Images and Texts as Forms of Communication. Papers from the Third Utrecht Symposium on Medieval Literacy, Utrecht, 7 -9 December 2000
31. WHAT IS CULTURAL TEXT?
Cultural texts are those objects, actions,
and behaviors that reveal cultural
meanings. A photo is an image, but is
also a cultural text, a picture with cultural
information beyond just the picture itself.
32. Food and clothing also suggest cultural
information, and it doesn’t stop there. The entire
place and space, all of the people and interaction,
all of the rituals and rules and the various forms in
which they manifest themselves, are “readable”
texts, suitable for observation and analysis by the
ethnographer and writer.
33. SAMPLE IDENTIFICATION OF A CULTURAL TEXT
Take a look around the room or place you are in right now and briefly
catalog the people and/or things you see. These objects and actions are
cultural texts. In traditional American college classroom, there are some
cultural texts that are fairly standard: tables and chairs or desks; bright
lighting; black or white board to write on. Your class room may also be a
‘smart room’, complete with a computer or LCD projector. There may be
windows, one or two doors. The floor may or may not be carpeted. There
will also be the presence of decoration—paint, tile, etc. A space may or
may not be void of people, who are also considered to be cultural texts.
Their actions, arrangements and demographics reflect how the space is
used. What is in a space and what happens in the space are all cultural
texts that are available for analysis. In other words, the space and objects
with in it are “readable” cultural texts. They say some thing about the
purpose, needs, and perhaps even values and beliefs of the people who
34. THE IDENTIFICATION OF CULTURAL TEXTS WILL BE ABSOLUTELY
NECESSARY, BUT THEY ARE FAIRLY EASY TO
IDENTIFY ONCE YOU GET THE HANG OF IT.
If your classroom is traditional, there will be places for
people to sit, and surfaces on which to write. What we
may not all share is the form of these seats and surfaces
and the formation of these seats in the room. Look around
and take note: Are there individual desks, or tables and
chairs? Can you move seats into different arrangements?
Are there computers? How are the desks arranged?
Where do the students sit? Where does the instructor
35. Analysis can be challenging because we have all agreed to the meaning which
we take them for granted.
For example, it is most likely that you have never entered a classroom and been
all that confused about where you should sit or what part of the space is
intended for the instructor. It is also most probably true that whether the
classroom desks are arranged in rows, or in a circle, students will always leave
the “front” of the room for the instructor and arrange themselves at a distance
from the instructor. There is an invisible buffer zone around the teacher space
that students seem to acknowledge, yet it is not some thing they discuss and
agree on before they enter the room. These things speak to the strong message
of hierarchy and authority set through the way the furniture is organized in the
class room space and how well it connects to the students’ existing beliefs about
the positions they and their teachers occupy in that space. This larger
observation, then, one that goes beyond the mere description of what happens
to suggest a reason why this is how and why certain behavior occurs, is the
starting point for cultural analysis.
36. The analysis continues as you work to ask even more questions:
• Are there any works of art or books or media that pro vide
insight into the values and ideas of the people there?
• How do your classmates or other people around you present
themselves through their clothing?
• What messages are you “reading” from them? How might they
be “reading” you?
• These types of questions are really just the beginning as you
identify the variety of cultural texts available to you in your
As a researcher, you will be working to uncover the stories and
deeper meaning in artifacts (things) and behaviors.
37. • Artifacts at a site may seem so “normal” to the people who use
them that they don’t even realize they carry any meaning. As
reader and researcher of cultural texts (artifacts, styles, rituals,
behaviors, expressions, etc.), you will have to interpret as you
observe while attempting at the same time to under stand how
the community you are observing interprets their own cultural
patterns. Whether you are an insider (a member of the
community) or an outsider (an observer of the community),
when you present your study/research, you will attempt to tell
the story of how things look from the inside.
38. • Returning to the instance of the class room, consider the following questions:
Why are the desks arranged as they are? What does that say about the power dynamic in the
Why do you already know where to sit and what it means to sit in the front, middle or back of the
Where have you chosen to sit?
Where have you been assigned to sit? How has this experience affected your feelings about school
What was your favorite/worst class in high school?
How was the room arranged/decorated? Can you reach any conclusions about the relevance of
design or decoration?
40. DETECTING BIAS IN THE MEDIA
• Media bias is ubiquitous (everywhere)
and not easy to detect. It is always
useful to compare several sources of
information and, in doing so, it
becomes clear that media coverage is
never completely objective.
41. Media have tremendous power in setting
cultural guidelines and in shaping
political discourse. It is essential that
news media, along with other
institutions, are challenged to be fair and
42. Bias by omission:
For every news story that is selected, there are
many others that are left out. Do the news stories
you see show a balanced view of real life? What
are the characteristics they have in common?
(e.g., Are they mostly about violence, famous
people, wealth?) Do some news sources include
items that are ignored by others?
43. • Bias by emphasis:
What stories are on the front page or “at the top of
the hour?” Which stories get the largest headlines,
or the first and longest coverage on TV or radio?
Consider how this placement influences people’s
sense of what is important.
44. • Bias by use of language:
The use of labels such as “terrorist,”
“revolutionary,” or “freedom fighter” can
create completely different impressions
of the same person or event.
45. • Bias in photos:
Unflattering pictures can create bad
impressions, and partial pictures of scenes
can completely change the context of an
46. • Bias in the source:
An article about a cure for cancer written by a drug
company is not the same as an article by an independent
researcher. Often, private companies, governments,
public relations firms, and political groups produce press
releases to gain media exposure and to influence the
47. • Bias by headlines:
Some headlines can be deceptive, as their main
purpose is to grab attention. Many people read
only the headlines, which can create a distorted
sense of what is really going on, or turn a non-
event into a sensational event.
48. • Bias by repetition:
The repetition of a particular event or idea can lead
people to believe that it is true, very widespread,
and much more important than it really is.
49. • Bias in numbers and statistics:
• Statistics need to be interpreted; they are often used to create
false impressions. Of the following statements, which statistic
would you use to try to convince someone that the death
penalty is a good idea?
• – Almost 30% of those surveyed support the death penalty.
• – More than 70% of those surveyed are against the death
50. • Bias in diversity:
What is the race and gender diversity at the news outlet
you watch compared to the communities it serves? How
many producers, editors or decision-makers at news
outlets are women, people of color or openly gay or
lesbian? In order to fairly represent di erent communities,
news outlets should have members of those communities
in decision-making positions.
51. • Bias from the point of view:
• Political coverage often focuses on how issues affect politicians
or corporate executives rather than those directly affected by
the issue. For example, many stories on parental notification of
abortion emphasized the “tough choice” confronting male
politicians while quoting no women under 18–those with the
most at stake in the debate. Economics coverage usually looks
at how events impact stockholders rather than workers or
• Demand that those affected by the issue have a voice in
52. DIFFERENT TYPE OF TEXT
• (advertisements, editorials, sermons, shopping lists,
poems, telephone books, novels, etc)
53. Narrative texts
Narrative texts have to do with real-world events and time.
They may be fictional (fairy tales, novels) or non- fictional
(newspaper report). They are characterised by a
sequencing of events expressed by dynamic verbs and by
adverbials such as “and then”, “first”, “second”, “third”
Example: First we packed our bags and then we called a
taxi. After that we… etc.
54. Descriptive texts
Descriptive texts are concerned with the location of persons and
things in space. They will tell us what lies to the right or left, in the
background or foreground, or they will provide background
information which, perhaps, sets the stage for narration. It is
immaterial whether a description is more technical-objective or
more impressionistic- subjective. 6 Descriptive texts State or
positional verbs plus adverbial expressions are employed in
descriptions Examples: 1) The operation panel is located on the
right-hand side at the rear; 2) New Orleans lies on the Mississippi.
55. Directive texts
Directive texts are concerned with concrete future activity.
Central to these texts are imperatives (Hand me the
paper) or forms which substitute for them, such as polite
questions (Would you hand me the paper?) or suggestive
remarks (I wonder what the paper says about the
56. Narrative, descriptive and directive texts have
grammatical forms associated with them which may be
expanded to form sequences of a textual nature
They are all centered around real-world events and
things. In contrast, expository and argumentative texts are
cognitively oriented, as they are concerned with
explanation and persuasion, which are both mental
57. Expository texts
Expository texts identify and characterize phenomena. They include text forms
such as definitions, explications, summaries and many types of essay.
Expository texts may be subjective (essay) or objective (summary, explication,
definition) may be analytical (starting from a concept and then characterizing its
parts; e.g. definitions) or synthetic (recounting characteristics and ending with an
appropriate concept or conclusion; e.g. summaries) are characterized by state
verbs and epistemic modals (Pop music has a strong rhythmic beat; Texts may
consist of one or more sentences) or by verbs indicating typical activities or
58. “Always be critical and aware as
you read, watch, or listen to mass
media. Keep alert for these many
forms of bias.”
59. FLA (FLEXIBLE LEARNING ACTIVITY
1. Search for images that deals with environmental
issues and write an analysis of the image.
2. Search for any news in in the newspaper and write an
analysis about it.
3. Search for cultural text or image and explain its
4. Post your output in your weebly
Examining Culture as text (n.d.) Engaging community writing ethnographic research. Retrieve from www.engagingcommunities.org/proposing-the-
Global education monitoring report (2019). Let’s work together. Education has a key role in helping achieve theSustainable Development Goals
(n.d.) Detecting Bias in the Media
Evaluating Messages and Images – Purposive Communication. Retrieved from https://purposivecommunication.news.blog/2018/09/08/business-
(2019) How To Detect Bias In News Media. Retrieve from https://fair.org/take-action-now/media-activism-kit/how-to-detect-bias-in-news-media/
Mayhew, R. (2019). How to Interpret Nonverbal Messages in the Workplace. Retrieved from https://smallbusiness.chron.com/interpret-nonverbal-
How the Language Really Works: The Fundamentals of Critical Reading and Effective Writing. Retrieved from