A. I don’t think I have ever read a book that I just picked off a shelf blindly. I choose to read books that are suggested to me. With this being said, Dancing Over Kyoto NEEDS good reviews. People need to be talking about it to let other people know it is actually being read. I think the book would do well with a type of online forum where discussions about the book can be formed and the content can be freely talked about by those who enjoyed the book.

B. Howard College would be so much more appealing if they created a web page that appealed to the types of people who would be interested in the college in the first place. They need to be showing off their college using that “cool” factor that all college kids are seeking by showing using skills of JMC students and other departments to catch everyone’s eye. Display the information not only through paragraphs but visually displaying why Howard College is the best.

C. I can’t think of anything more frustrating than trying to find a price for something online and not being able to find it. When selling a product, one of the big selling points for the customer is the price. Putting simple information like that out there and not making the customer have to search endlessly to find necessary information about the pool is an easy way to make the customer want to buy that pool. Pictures are always good!

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I have always thought of the news as a respectable place everyone could learn about what is happening in the world around us. There have always been disturbing images on the news whether it be a war or terrorist act. However, explicit sexual images have never seemed to be appropriate when I thought of standards for a news broadcast. NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams on May 4. 2012 seemed to do just that.

The story on the secret service agents who acted inappropriately while in Columbia was once again brought up showing pictures of the escort in a skimpy bikini. Are those pictures necessary? Having that pop on the screen while kids might be walking through the room or even having teenagers see that because they should be encouraged to know about current events is not appropriate. Everyone knows what a sex scandal is so why put that into an image? The news should not be where that is displayed. Hollywood might get away with sexual content but the news should not. Use of mature language and appropriate details should be sought out and monitored by the news station before airing a story like that.

All news content is not going to be appropriate for children, but the news should stay a classy environment where the news is given and nothing more. The facts are what is necessary for a successful news story, not Facebook pictures of a foreign escort. NBC should have standards beyond what Hollywood is allowing these days for it is a place for professionals and families.

Every news cast seems to have some story on politics and while this is an election year and new developments happen everyday on the running between candidates it does not seem necessary to have a story on politics everyday. In NBC’s Nightly News with Brian Williams on April 27, 2012 within the first three stories, two of them were about politics. I am not trying to insinuate that politics and the issues within them are not important, but I think it is just as important to learn about the issues instead about what the politicians think about the issues.

Most of the things politicians debate about I do not fully understand myself. There is a need for the voters to be informed about what the issues are just as much as what stand the candidates take on them. The news should be dedicating some of its time to making sure their audience is grasping the concepts and issues that are being presented because unfortunately many of the voters will not take time out of their day to go learn about the issues themselves. To go in depth about the economy problems or to go in depth about healthcare could help the voters make an informed decision about who they choose to be their president.

I realize some of these issues are barely understood by professionals, but instead of just hearing what the politicians wanting us to hear and figure out our own side of the issue is important. The news should take on that responsibility because they are the ones many adults consistently listen to everyday. People often trust the news too much instead of learning about things on their own.

When asking students if they are in touch with broadcast news they will often say they do not take time out of their busy schedules in order to watch a news program. Instead, they get there news from Twitter or any other quick online news arenas where they can scan the headlines to see if anything interesting or devastating has happened and then proceed to conquer the many other things they have planned that day. The news does not always seem to be directed at young adults. The fact is that the news is very important to a college student’s life for they are able to make decisions concerning their world and they now have an independent voice no longer tied to their parents. So why would they not take time to listen or read the news? Many students find it boring and inapplicable but interestingly enough, today’s broadcast on NBC’s Nightly News with Brian Williams had two stories pointed directly towards college students.

The two stories, however, both included the intimidating reality of our country’s economic debt and how it is and will continue to affect the students. As a college student, I know the economy is down hill and to be reminded of how it will probably take most of my life to repay my student loans so that I will be able to have a solid college degree and then have another reminder of how that college degree might not be able to get me a job in order to pay back those loans is not the kind of news I want to hear.

News is not always encouraging nor should it always be, but people do not always want to be continually fed information that depresses them or seems over their head. They want to be informed and not forgotten. College students are voters; they help make decisions as well. The solution to this problem might not be clear, but the want and desire is there.

It’s interesting how an audience will choose to watch a show based on what the actors look like. If they are attracted to the characters than many people will watch the show regardless of its actual quality. This seems to have infiltrated the news room as well.

The broadcast the The Nightly News with Brian Williams on April 20, 2012 seemed to catch my eye for other reasons than a good news story. As I was watching each reporter come on screen I soon realized a trend of good looking people. I find it interesting that each woman on the news had a pretty face. Could it be that you have to be good looking in order to become a news anchor? I understand that we are watching a person not simply hearing them and while radio requires a good voice, television requires a nice appearance, does that need to be in the television news as well? A quality reporting job needs to be a news station’s focus and I fear that is not always the case. Plenty of amazing reporters in the past have not been super models so why now? I only hope that our superficial outlook on media will not penetrate a resource that is about solid reporting and informing us about what is happening in our country.

Hearing or reading words that create great excitement or distress are not often what they seem to mean. Just like when you see a sign in a store window saying “BIG SALE” and walk in only to find all of the out-of-season clothes that no one wanted barely marked down. The news seems to do that too sometimes.

I find it interesting how television news uses big exciting phrases to draw an audience in to hear that it’s not what you expected. This exact tactic was used on NBC’s Nightly News with Brian Williams on April 10, 2012 when they brought up the question of whether or not x-rays at the dentist cause brain tumors in the future. They began with phrases like, “studies today bring more reason for concern” and describing dental x-rays as “almost impossible to escape”. They make the story out to be like they are almost positive kids getting x-rays have a chance of getting brain tumors. These kind of ideas put in parents heads could potentially cause a panic making them not want to allow their children to go to  the dentist. The news needs to be reminding people that x-rays can help prevent problems with kids teeth and in actuality are a good thing when used properly.

Interestingly enough, later in the broadcast the reporter says, “the study at best SUGGESTS a connection” concerning x-rays and brain tumors. Why did they not use the word “SUGGESTS” earlier? In the next clip, Dr. Otis Brawley, medical director of the American Cancer Society, states, “We cannot say from this article that x-rays from dentistry actually cause brain tumors”. So, even a leading specialist in cancer is not completely sure there is any connection? It does not seem very reliable to me. Sensationalizing the news in order to keep their audience hooked is not a very respectful thing to do. The purpose of the news should be to relay the facts involved and not try to entertain an audience.

When you think of Virginia Tech is not the horrible shooting which took place there one of the first things to come to your mind? What images do you see when the country Iraq is mentioned? For either of these subjects, many people are reminded of the pictures they saw on television during the time of the shooting or the war. The news has the ability to present any subject through the eyes of the reporter. What a task to behold.

In the Nightly News with Brian Williams on NBC, April 9, 2012, an interesting statement was made by a man from Tulsa, Oklahoma regarding the recent shooting, “This community will not be defined by the treacherous evil crimes of two individuals”. He brings up a good point; whatever is brought to the attention of an audience by the news should not define what that city, state, nation, or even people of the community are about. However, many news broadcasts have done just that. Even a place like New York City has evolved in my mind as a place where the disastrous event of 9/11 took place, and my mind can see so vividly the Trade Center buildings falling from what footage was shown that somber afternoon on television.

Even more drastic, the image given to places in the Middle East such as Iraq is shaped by what I have seen on the news which has not been very uplifting. The news is given a great responsibility of depicting an area which many of us will never see. Our views of such a place may be skewed by the news because of the biased opinion of the station broadcasting the story. The responsibility of a station is heightened by this warning, for the news station must be respectful of their audience in giving them the facts and simply that. The beauty of news is that the audience can then take the facts and form their own opinion and display this in taking action or being passive. The freedom of America can be displayed in the news not by putting a spin on a story but by letting the audience choose what to think.