UNTclass

Thursday, July 06, 2006

DUKE LACROSSE SCANDAL CASE STUDY

A study of the Duke lacrosse scandal; which method is really at play, Utilitarian or Communitarian?

On Monday, March 13, 2006 the Duke University lacrosse team held a party at the rented home of the team’s three captains. The members of the team hired two strippers and requested that these females be either White or Hispanic. Two exotic dancers were sent over. They were black. The next series of events not only come into serious conflict but emerge as completely different versions of a party gone out of control. In the end, one of the dancers, 27-year-old Crystal Mangum tells authorities that she was taunted with racial slurs, beaten, choked, sodomized and raped inside the bathroom of the rented house. Allegations, arrests and community turmoil erupt as officials attempt to figure out exactly what happened. To no-ones surprise, the role of public relations becomes a key focal point and the country watches closely as the details of this case unfold. As future practitioners we are not only concerned with the details of the case but must pay attention to the approach being employed as this information is vital to our profession. The question presented to us is whether or not the Duke case supports the use utilitarianism or communitarinism, but before we attempt to answer that, a closer look at the facts must be taken.

According to official reports, below is a detailed timeline of the events surrounding the Duke lacrosse case:


March 13, 2006
Duke University's lacrosse players throw a team party at an off-campus house, hiring two strippers to perform.
March 14, 2006
One of the dancers tells Durham police that three members of the lacrosse team forced her into a bathroom, where they beat, raped, and sodomized her.

March 23, 2006
Forty-six of the team's 47 members comply with a judge's order to provide DNA samples and be photographed. The team's sole black member is not tested because the victim said her attackers were white

March 25, 2006
School announces lacrosse team will not play two scheduled games, citing the team's decision to hire "private party dancers" and underage drinking at the party.

March 28, 2006
Duke suspends lacrosse team from play until it has a "clearer resolution of the legal situation" of involving team members.

April 3, 2006
District Attorney Mike Nifong stops granting interviews about the case.

April 5, 2006
Coach Mike Pressler resigns and Duke President Richard Brodhead cancels the team's season after authorities unseal a search warrant containing an e-mail from player Ryan McFadyen in which he says he wants to kill and skin strippers. McFadyen is suspended from school.

April 10, 2006
Defense attorneys announce that DNA test results find no match between the players tested and the woman accusing the players of rape.

April 11, 2006
District Attorney Mike Nifong says he will continue investigating the rape allegations

April 17, 2006
A Durham County grand jury returns sealed indictments against two Duke lacrosse players.

April 18, 2006
Duke lacrosse players Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty are taken into custody on charges of rape, sexual offense and kidnapping. Each is released after posting bond of $400,000. Nifong says authorities continue to try to identify a third possible assailant.

April 25, 2006
Granville County authorities confirm the accuser told police 10 years ago she was raped by three men when she was 14. None of the men were charged.

May 1, 2006
A Duke University committee recommends the school's lacrosse team resume play next season, but adds the team needs strict monitoring because of a history of problems tied to alcohol.

May 2, 2006
D.A. Nifong fends off two challengers to win the Democratic primary for district attorney. Because he has no Republican challenger in the fall election, he is all but assured of remaining in office.

May 8, 2006
A university report concludes Duke Administrators were slow to react to the scandal in part because of initial doubts about the accuser's credibility.

May 15, 2006
A grand jury indicts a third member of Duke University's lacrosse team on charges tied to a woman's allegations she was raped and beaten at a team party. David Evans, a senior and team captain from Bethesda, Md., was indicted on charges of first-degree forcible rape, sexual offense and kidnapping.

June 5, 2006
Duke University President Richard Brodhead announced the men's lacrosse team will resume play next season, but under strict rules and close monitoring. Brodhead said he and the school's athletics administrators would rethink their decision if they see any repeat of "patterns of irresponsible, individual or team behaviors familiar from the past."

June 29, 2006
A Duke University lacrosse player suspended for sending a vulgar e-mail about killing strippers was reinstated and can rejoin the team in the fall. The school had suspended Ryan McFadyen, 20, of Mendham, N.J., after authorities investigating rape allegations by a dancer at a team party released a search warrant for his dorm room that included the graphic e-mail sent from his Duke account.

A Brief Look at Utilitarian Ethics at Work
Dallas Cowboy case study (by Jacqueline J. Lambiase and John Mark Dempsey)

Back in 1998, a locker room horseplay incident, which would later be described as a fight, left one player, Everett Mclver, with a serious injury (a deep cut on the neck). In the days following the fight, both the new head coach of the team, and the team owner defined the incident as a “scuffle” and “family matter”. After pursuing the story, print and broadcast journalists learned that Michael Irvin, a star player and also a player with a turbulent legal history, was involved in the fight. For one week, the media struggled with the Cowboys’ organization in an attempt to gain more information and the truth. Accused of stonewalling the press, the Cowboys were faced with the question of whether or not using a “no comment” strategy was the best approach. In the end the Cowboys were able to separate and elevate themselves from the community and managed to keep their key player on the team.

Evidence of Communitarianism amidst the Duke Scandal
When reviewing some of the efforts made by Duke to restore their image as a leading university in the United States, some communitarian attempts were recognized in their course of action. Duke has intentions of launching a Campus Culture Initiative, self-examination of the behaviors of not only the athletes, but all students of the university. These behaviors include those that are thoughtless of others, among them their off-campus neighbors; disrespectful behavior across lines of race, gender, and other forms of difference; and the abuse of alcohol.
This effort displays Duke as taking a look at the outside community and acknowledging their characteristics and differences. By taking a look at what is outside of the isolated Duke population, the faculty and students are more aware of the entire Durham community. This will hopefully diversify the minds of the Durham people and promote a more cosmopolitan state of mind throughout their society. This step will help Duke "evaluate and suggest improvements in the ways Duke educates students in the values of personal responsibility".
Duke will also create a Presidential Council, made up of people from the Durham community, national higher education circles and Duke that will scrutinize Duke's responses to the incident and advise the president on whether the responses are appropriate and effective. The council is headed by Wilhelmina Reuben-Cooke, a member of the first cohort of African American undergraduates admitted to Duke and now Provost of the University of the District of Columbia, and Roy Bostock, a former Duke Trustee and director of the Duke University Health System, and he now chairs the Partnership for a Drug-Free America.
By including diverse members in the council Duke will have the opportunity to receive different views and perspectives of each action taken. Obtaining all critiques and suggestions from each of these members, who represent various parts of the community, will offset an awareness of the cultural diversity in Durham and incorporate the idea of
Cosmopolitanism. Duke is taking steps toward acknowledging its lack of social integration by encompassing attributes from many others outside of their own close knit community.

A More Familiar Road
While there is evidence to support that communitarian ethics were applied, the Duke case will most likely go down in history as yet another case that employed the utilitarian approach.
We know that utilitarianism stresses the importance in trying to bring about the greatest good to the greatest number while valuing the rights of individual freedoms over collective responsibilities. This theory has been widely accepted and almost exclusively applied in the field of public relations. The problem with utilitarianism is that it gives little or no attention to the benefits for the minority. Furthermore, the byproduct of utilitarianism often produces an “us against them” attitude. We found this to be true with the Duke lacrosse team, a band of bothers, who found themselves in the middle of a controversy involving heated racial debates, community outrage, privilege in educational institutions, and more. And much like the Dallas Cowboys they aren’t talking. In fact, on Duke’s official web page the names, faces and hometowns of the men on the lacrosse team have been removed. Further proof of utilitarianism is seen when reports, by a Duke committee assigned to review the facts of the case, was released in May. The committee recommended the school's lacrosse team resume play next season, but added that the team needed to be strictly monitored because of a history of problems tied to alcohol. The same report also revealed findings that university administrators learned of the team's "extensive disciplinary record" in 2004, but except for Coach Mike Pressler and the school's dean of judicial affairs, no one else at Duke "appears to have treated the lacrosse team's disciplinary record as a matter of serious concern."

End Results
It is therefore our conclusion that the primary stakeholders in this case ( the lacrosse team, and Duke Officials) have elected to accept the greatest good for the greatest number to mean What is best for the team while the rest of us are left to ask the question-what about everyone else.
An attempt to receive information form Duke’s public relations person, John Burness, was made but he did not respond to our request for information.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

THOSE DUKE BOYS

Let me say that there is so much going on with the Duke scandal that I almost wish we had been able to study it during our PR case studies class this past fall. But since it is my job this semester to try and zoom in on the utilitarianism and communitarianism theories I will do my best to focus but ask for forgiveness if I go off track from time to time.
Dr. Lambiase, I was reading the details about this case and I have to ask you: do you think that using the communitarian approach gets extremely tricky whenever a racial divide is at the forefront? I am asking because whenever there is a race issue that seems to pit the black community against the white community applying communitarinism is difficult? I was just wondering what you thought about that.
It looks like Duke officials used the utilitarian approach, and because they got some flac from the community in Durham they've had to sort of back pedal and focus a bit more on communitarianism. For instance, I read that Duke was working with the NAACP, and other community leaders in order to repair some of the damage that has been caused to the community. I also read that Duke is instituting programs to help students deal with life issues and decisions about responsibility and ethics and things along those lines, which I thought was a good thing. I see this as benefiting the future of the community as future graduates are turned out into the world. Despite the fact that Duke administrators had received some criticism for their silence at the beginning of this case, I think they may be trying to make improvements. However, regardless of how the officials at Duke are handling this, the lacrosse team is definitely sticking together. I'm glad you gave us the Dallas Cowboy study to review because there are striking similiarities at play (would you agree)? The lacrosse team, much like the Cowboys, organization are obviously a "band of brothers." They are clearly operating on a utiliarian scale REGARDLESS of what Duke officials are doing. SOMETHING happened at that party on March 13th and nobody is talking. It looks like the lacrosse team has decided "the greatest good for the greatest number" applies to the team and not the community.
The accuser's story is quite different from the lacrosse team's version. The accuser is going up against power, prestige and money-a triple threat I call it-and it doesn't look good for her. I doubt that a whistle blower will emerge from the team's roster. Remember noone was willing to give Michael Irving up either. There seems to be this culture of good ol' boys that is more alive than ever.
The lacrosse team remains focused on their individual rights and remember one of the drawbacks of the utilitarian approach is that it can condone harming a few individuals (in this case the accuser) if the rest of society (in this case the team) would benefit. It will be interesting to see how this case plays out.
On a separate note, have you noticed how some news stations label the accuser as a "stripper" while others call her an "exotic dancer?" Reminds me of our Race Gender and Media class all over again.
TG

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Feedback regarding Chapter 21 (Selling Lollipops to the Teen Market)

Ok, I've read the case twice and I think we should talk about it. The details of this case are about an ad agency (The Richards Group, in Dallas) that was trying to find a way to come up with a marketing strategy that would get their client -Chupa Chups- sufficient shelf space in convenient stores and at the same time create a demand for the lollipops. This was a major obstacle to overcome because major candy manufacturers dominant shelf space at convenient stores. The Richards group came up with an ad that can easily be considered high in its sexual content (to some), and the targeted audience was teens. So that's the case very simplified and in a nut-shell.

I have to be honest, before I even finished reading this case the first time, I KNEW that the Richards Group would take a utilitarian approach to their dilemna. (Yes, It has become THAT predictable). I am not saying that the ad was the most offensive ad I'd ever heard about or seen; It wasn't especially after taking Dr. Lambiase's Race, Gender and Media class this past May. But I will say that the Richards Group fell into the same old line of thinking that mostly every company does and seemingly systematically relies on, which is the use of a stereotype-involving sex- to get them out of a jam. And taking the utilitarian approach is a perfect way to justify it. What I mean to say is too many times than not, a company that takes a utilitarian approach can rely on something lazy and simple like the "sex sells" attitude and be completely ok with it. Their moral compass tells them that it is just the way things are and they should not be penalized for it because they didn't make it this way, AND that they are just looking out for the future of their client. I have no problem with regarding stewardship as an important factor, but I would have liked to ask Ms. Hodge, creative leader, if the communitarian approach was ever seriously considered during the brainstorming session that I am sure the Richards Group had piror to coming up with the campaign. Ms. Hodge points out that the woman in the ad, who is sucking the lollipop, does not do it intially with the intent to draw attention to herself, but really wasn't the intent of the ad to draw attention to the supposed sexual spell a woman can cast on men-especially since they all use their penises to think with in the first place? And if it was not the intent then why not put a very average looking women in the ad instead? This idea that a feminist victory has been won because the woman is able to prove how silly men can be when it comes to simple things like watching a woman put a piece of candy in her mouth, is a little lost in the message of the commercial I think. And the name "oral pleasure" doesn't do much for the feminist movement either, I might add. Without getting too caught up on the content of the commercial, I would like to point out that the communitarian approach would have been a better approach for the Richards Group in my opinion and here's why: I would like to think that when your back is against the wall and you're facing the pressure of a deadline that there are more options besides using sexually based ads to come to the rescue. I may be living in la-la land, but I am optimistic that CREATIVE PR and marketing professionals alike can somehow find it feasible to show concern for the longterm effects that young impressionable minds (LIKE TEENS!) will face every single time a sexually explicit ad is placed in front of them. By honoring the communitarian approach, I think The Richards Group could have come up with something that did not involve a room full of men experiencing arousal because of what a strange woman was doing with a damn lollipop! Come on people! I know that Ms. Hodge says that the campaign tested favorably amongst the targeted audiences, but does that necessarily mean it was not harmful? And more importantly would the Richards Group even care if it were?
My issue with utilitarian vs. communitarian will probably be posted over and over again and I am not saying that communitarian will always be the best route to go. However, I am convinced that if we continuously disregard communitarian ethics we will have bigger problems than "oral pleasurable lollipops" facing our future generations.
TG

Sunday, June 11, 2006

The Perils of Local TV Investigative Reporting...

I read chaper nine in the Contemporary Media Ethics book last night. It was an interesting read and definitely points out the dark side that plagues the utilitarian perspective. I don't know if you remember this case but it's the one where the ABC affiliate WXYZ-TV in Detroit Michigan attempted to reveal the alleged corruption in a local police station. The news station set up a sting and it backfired and an 11-year old boy was the victim. Anyway, I think this is something that future practioners should take seriously and is worth discussing at length in future classes . As a profession, we've been practicing the utilitarian approach for so long that I think we lose site of how important it is to employ moral and ethical methods in our pursuit of the truth. Dr. L, this case really drives home the point that practioners need to some how incorporate an alternative point of view. What do you think?
TG

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Scratching my head on this one.....

Okay, I think I have sort of a grasp on utilitarian ethics and how it relates to communitarian ethics but I defintely need further clarification from Dr. L.
I read chapters three and four, which by the way were a little difficult to understand. Is it fair to say that both approaches (U & C) agree that the greatest good for the greatest number of poeple is at the heart of both theories? And where they differ is based on how to decide who should determine what that "good" is and also what the "good" should be???
Secondly, when Merrill and Christians use the term "rule utilitarian" do they mean that there should be a set of rules that everyone is forced to abide by because it ultimately leads to supporting "the greatest good for the greatest amount" theory?
Finally, In chapter four Christians writes that utilitarian democracy lives on a mistaken assumption in that it confuses an aggregate of individual goods with the common good. (???) I have an idea of how I need to interpret that but I could use your guidance. And since I'm aksing for guidance, I could use some on the communitarian theory as well. I mean, is the communitarian perspective basically saying that the community's needs (which is made up of individuals) are collectively more important than any one individual???. But Dr. Lambiase if that is the case what if the entire group of individuals all want the same thing.... couldn't both the utilitarian and communitarian approach be used?? I'm going to stop typing now because I think I am confusing myself even more.

Friday, June 02, 2006

And...

One last thing, Has anyone ever noticed that alllllll the major game shows are hosted by males while their female counterpart (if there is one) is opening curtains, or turning letters. Just thought I'd ask

MAKE IT STOP!

Well, I tried watching television. The Price is Right has been a favorite show of mine since I was a little girl. Now it's bugging me. "Barkers Beauties"... gimme a break. Bob Barker, an old white-haired man, still gets to be at the forefront of the camera, while young curvy women, scantily clad, smile and show the world appliances. On the same note, have you checked out the game show "Deal or No Deal" lately. There are twenty-five beauties on that stage! Entertainment tonight did a show about how they choose the wardrobe for the show. The ladies were running around back stage like teenagers getting ready for their prom. Just sad.

A RANDOM MEETING

So yesterday I was at a computer center finishing up my final project and in walks two teenage males. One was white and the other was latino. They were there to use one of the computers in order to down load ring tones to their cell phones. I could not help but to over hear their conversation. They got into a discussion about a current popular song that features a female rapper. They both liked the song very much but one of the boys said he wished it was a male who was rapping because the things the female rapper rapped about are things that guys would say and should say. "I don't want no hoe's voice popping up on my cell," the latino male said. "It's a good song and everything but sometimes bitches just need to be in the videos shaking tthat ass," the other said. I left the office. I simply could not watch another tragedy in motion.
TG

ACTING BLACK?? (PART II OF GROUP STUDY)

Acting Black…what does that mean? How is it interpreted by film makers and are the images they produce an accurate depiction of the races?

Malibu’s Most wanted
In 2003 actor Jamie Kennedy starred in a movie about an upper middle class white American who aspired to be a rapper. We chose to look at this film in order to find out if there are indeed common characteristics associated with white actors who are attempting to “act black.”
Using content analysis we categorized the following areas:
Characters, appearance, voice/accent, behavior/gestures, and character occupation. Here are a list of our findings:
Characters (main):
Jamie Kennedy. (white)
Anthony Anderson (black)
Taye Diggs (black)
Blair Underwood (black)
Regina Hall (black)
By analyzing the movie and the cast members that were selected to play the roles we discovered some interesting factors: Jamie Kennedy is light haired, tall and slim Anthony Anderson is heavy set, and sort of a bafune. Both Taye Diggs and Blair Underwood have done credible films that have been big hits with the African American community, it is almost surprising that they were cast in this film. This prompts me to believe that actors like them were intentionally sought after in order to give the film a credible black appeal. Regina Hall is the only starring female in this movie and is in a supporting role to the male supporting actors.



Appearance
Jamie Kennedy often dresses in athletic warm up suits or oversized shirts and jeans. His baseball cap is always inverted or turned backwards. He wears large gold jewelry and gold teeth. Because of the mere premise of the movie there is no second guessing as to what image this character is trying to portray. He is “acting black” and therefore these symbols can easily be coded.

Hall’s character is frequently dressed provocatively. She wears outfits that accentuate her shape, especially her rear end.
The other male characters (Anderson, and Diggs) change their appearance in the movie in order to become more “urban.” When that change comes about, they are seen wearing bandannas, baggy clothing, and big gold chains. They are black actors who are now “acting black.” This irony, in my opinion, drives the stereotype even further.

Voice/accent
Kennedy often slurs his words and uses an enormous amount of slang terms. He uses broken English and sucks his teeth a lot.

Taye Diggs and Anthony Anderson’s characters do not speak with a “typical” black accent. This is purposely done as part of the movie’s satire. Along the same lines the pair make a conscious effort to speak more “urban” in order to legitimize their blackness, and befriend Kennedy’s character.

Hall’s character speaks with an exaggerated drawn out voice and often displays an attitude when she speaks. This type of language has become the stereotypical depiction of black women who are labeled as bitchy females.

Behavior/Gestures
Kennedy’s character walks with a limp, and uses hand gestures when he speaks. He often contorts his mouth and rolls his eyes. In one scene this character is in bed with two African-american women who he refers to as hoes. Throughout the film this character refers to his own behavior as living a “hip-hop lifestyle.” A hip-hop lifestyle is a code for acting black.

Hall’s character moves her neck from side to side when she speaks especially when she is upset. She rolls her eyes, smacks her lips and yells a lot. A lot of attitude is another code for “acting black”

Occupation
I felt the occupations of the characters were the most interesting category.
Kennedy’s character did not work. He was the son of a politician and basically decided that he wanted to be the next big rapper. He lives at home with his parents and is not concerned with supporting himself.

Anderson and Diggs are aspiring actors and are struggling to make it big and they will do almost anything to accomplish that goal including become something that they are not.
Hall’s character worked in a fast food restaurant. And she too was willing to do things out of her character in order to get ahead. Her primary focus in the movie was to manipulate the Kennedy character for monetary compensation.

Other films that portray white characters that attempt to identify with the black race can be coded with the same symbols listed above. For example, films like Beauty Shop, which featured actress Alicia Silverstone. Silverstone’s character sports corn rows as a way to fit in with the other black hairdressers. In this regard a simple hairstyle such as braids can be used as a code. Another example is Michael Rappaport’s character in Bamboozled. He spoke with slang terms and a slur, and used the word “nigga” when referring to other black people. While this Spike Lee movie was based on satire, Lee’s message is clear about the negative images of blacks that keep finding themselves in mainstream movies.

After researching “acting black” it is clear that film makers are entangled and often control a vicious cycle that continues to thrust stereotypical images of black people to the big screen.

Too often writers, producers, and directors are relying heavily on a one-dimensional sub-section of hip-hop culture to dictate the images that may not be intended to represent an entire race of people, but in all actuality does just that. It’s a lazy way out and it’s dangerous.

My professor, Dr. Lambiase, asked us a question repeatedly throughout the semester: Can’t we do better?! I would hate to think that the only way for us to understand one another is through the lopsided views of a few movie moguls . I have grown to believe that people are comfortable with stereotyping other races. It’s easier to process information that way, I’m sure. We, the consumers, are also part of the vicious cycle. We are just as guilty of perpetuating the myth that all black people like to wear gold jewelry, or that all black women have attitudes. What we learned at the beginning of class, applies here. Simplex. And simplex is easier to comprehend.
During my research, I read several of blogs on this topic. I came across a post from a student (didn’t see what school he attended) whose post I felt was worth mentioning:

You don’t have to use slang, wear baggy clothes or act like a thug to be black. These requirements are so limiting and simplistic that they neglect many other personality types in a given race. Although people would like to think that there are corresponding behavioral traits, none exist. Behavior and personality are up to the individual to determine, not skin color.
-author Alex Moulter

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

IT'S COMING TO AN END

I can't believe the last day of class is upon us. I have to say that I have gotten more out of this three week super accelerated course than I have from most of my full semester courses at UNT. My eyes have been opened and I am seeing things in a brand new light. All I have to say is wow! Thanks Jackie for a great start to the rest of my summer classes.
TG

MINI STUDY

Have advertisers forgotten about their grandparents? Is everyone’s grandma the same?

Summary of my findings:

After taping nine hours of television on a major television station (ABC), during three different times of the day (morning, noon, and evening), I discovered that out of a total of 123 commercials five were targeted toward elderly people

Previous Findings:

Elderly people are an underrepresented and underutilized target market and have been since 1973. When commercials are geared toward a senior audience stereotypical images are usually at the forefront as seniors are often depicted as helpless, feeble minded, confused, or grumpy.

Correlation

The most important information that contributed to my findings was a study that was conducted by Linda E. Swayne and Alan J. Greco, authors of The Portrayal of Older Americans in Television Commercials, 1987 Journal of Advertising. According to the study (posted online at www.geocites.com), Swayne and Greco's study examined 36 hours of prime time programming from three U.S. networks for a total sample of 814 commercials. They coded the total number of people in each ad, the number of elderly people in each ad, the role (major, minor, or background) of the elderly people in each ad, the type of character portrayed by the elderly (advisor, information receiver, comical /humorous, or feeble/ confused), the positioning of the elderly with other age groups (appearing alone, with other elderly, with children only, or with various age groups), the setting of the commercial (home, outdoor, business or other), and the intended audience (elderly alone, caretakers, or general appeal). Of all ads monitored, only 6.9% had elderly characters at all; in proportion to the total TV commercial population, only 3.2% were elderly characters. Women appeared more frequently than men by a slight margin, about 4%. Elderly were most likely to appear in food commercials (36%), and least likely to appear in ads for security items (2%). They appeared 56% of the time in home settings, and only 8% of the time in outdoor settings.

Corpus and method:

My corpus consisted of hours of video taped television commercials on a major broadcasting station. The information gathered was over a 48-hour period which ran from May 22 to May 24th. I used content analysis to screen the tapes and compare relevant commercials to the information detailed in the Swayne and Greco study.

Findings:

Out of the 123 commercials that were recorded only six commercials (4.06%) were directed to a senior/aging market. Three commercials were featured during the daytime (5:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.). One spoke about a mobile cart for elderly people to travel around (Hove around) one was for a specially designed bed (Kraftmatic), and the last was for a denture cleaner. It should be noted that both commercials were featured closer to the earlier morning hour of 5:30 a.m. In the afternoon (12:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. two other commercials were featured: One was giving information on Medicare benefits and the other was for life insurance for individuals over the age of 65. Both these commercials were shown before 2 p.m. During the evening hours that I set the equipment to tape (6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.), there was not a single commercial shown that targeted senior citizens.

Conclusion

I discovered that not much has changed since Swayne and Greco reported their findings in 1987. The elderly are almost viewed as a non-existent group. I find this ironic simply because we live in the age of advertising and companies are always trying to capture the biggest audience they possibly can. Why have the elderly been discounted?

In my opinion media are extremely disinterested and narrow minded when it comes to marketing to elderly people. I do feel as though they are only viewed as absent minded frail people who only like to complain about their aches and pains. Being part of a minority group, I can sympathize with stereotypes that lump different individuals who happen to share one or two characteristics into one category.

DISNEY- IS IT REALLY THE LAND OF MAKE BELIEVE
Sorry this comment is a day late, but I just can't let it go without saying something. We watched a documentary on the images/stories that Disney portrays. I was SHOCKED! Never before had I realized that Disney perpetuated such stereotypical images. Sure, when you visit Disney Land you truly feel like you are watching the big screen into someone's imagination but after yesterday I was forced to ask myself, just whose imagination are we watching here? I mean, why is it that the female characters are always waiting for their "Knight and shining Armour" to come rescue them? The most profound moment of the documentary for me was when one of the professors spoke about the hidden messages behind "Beauty and the Beast." Here we have this female character, patiently waiting for the Beast to change from his hostile and down right abusive demeanor. In fact, she was the one who was willing to try and change him. What kind of message is this sending to our young children (girls and boys)? I think Dr. Lambiase's question should be on the minds of all students... Can't we do better than this?????
TG