Parenting a Media-Savvy Generation

Once my husband and I took a rare opportunity to have a date night leaving our six-year-old twins with what we thought were capable babysitters. Well, were we surprised when returning home we found the twins finishing up the R-rated movie The Matrix. We have found it virtually impossible to shield our boys from Big Media’s bombardment of images and lifestyle choices of the current crop of celebrities. Yesterday’s Snooki is today’s Kardashian. The Simpsons used to be horrible, now it’s South Park and The Family Guy.

May 3 Webinar Tackles Media Depictions of African-American Men and Boys

Last October, The Opportunity Agenda, a New York-based advocacy group, released a new report about the influence of media in regards to national perceptions of African-American men. The report, “Opportunity for Black Men and Boys: Public Opinion, Media Depictions, and Media Consumption,” covered a decade’s worth of research, concluding that depictions of black males were frequently distorted and unrealistically presented in media compared to national data sets and statistics. The Opportunity Agenda Executive Director, Alan Jenkins, will join Dori J. Maynard, president of the Robert C. Maynard Institute for Journalism Education, for a webinar presentation next month to discuss the report’s findings. The one-hour web broadcast, scheduled for May 3 at 3 p.m., will examine how Americans’ attitudes towards African-American males are potentially shaped by media portrayals, including the depictions of black youth in news reports, advertising and entertainment. Additionally, Jenkins and Maynard are expected to discuss ways in which media outlets can change the way they present depictions of African-American youth.

California May Ease Restrictions on Media Access to Prisoners

The California State Assembly is considering a bill that would ease restrictions for members of the press to interview prisoners. The legislation, known as AB-1270, passed unanimously out of the Public Safety Committee Jan. 10 before being referred on to the Appropriations Committee. The bill, sponsored by Public Safety Committee Chair Tom Ammiano, requires the California Department of Corrections (CDCR) to permit reporters to interview inmates personally in California’s prison unless the warden determines the interview poses an immediate threat to public safety or the security of the institution. Reporters must request the interview in advance.

Leonard Witt

Show that you care, real juvenile justice depends upon you

Since the beginning of the Georgia legislative session our reporter Chandra Thomas and our supporting JJIE.org staff of editors, interns and freelancers have been closely watching all legislation aimed at juvenile justice issues. Thomas had two excellent round-up stories yesterday and today targeting which bills would move forward and which would not on crossover day. I opened my Atlanta Journal-Constitution today to see how its coverage of these juvenile justice bills compared with ours here at the JJIE.org. From what I could see there was nothing to compare. I saw nothing about Senate Bill 127, which is a rewrite of the juvenile code.