Spring 2014 News Writing Class


Note: This photo has been electronically manipulated to add a student to the group.

Students Feel Unsafe after School Shootings in the U.S. this year.

The number of mass school shooting in the U.S is still not declining despite efforts in increasing school security.

By Grecia Velazco


Have smartphones changed us socially?

By Asmaa Badr


Athletes Get More Favored in College

By Marielle Mapile


Water Conservation at De Anza

By Francisco Alvarado

Here’s the link to my article: Water Conservation at De Anza


Comment away!!

Who’s the Most Stressed-Out

By Bala Gunaseelan


Costs of textbooks are rising

By Lucia Marquez


1/3 of Americans haven’t been to the dentist in the past year!

Have you been to the dentist lately?

By Racheal Geremew




Winter 2014 class


Around the table, from left: Stephen, Jon, Helen, Laiza, Eva, Gina, Brenda and Isaac. Standing in back: Ryan, Brian, Brandon, Victor, Nicolas, Brian, Francisco, Lindsey, Caitlyn, Shreya and Jim.

News writing class, fall 2013

Front row: Zhie Wei Ng, Li Wei, Kirsten Second: Cristian, Craig, Christopher Third: Wen, Andrea, Joshua, Adam, Lance Fourth: Rachel, Bryan, Jay, Adrian, Jessica, Supreet, Steven Back row: Jay, Matthew, Megan

Front row: Zhie Wei Ng, Li Wei, Kirsten
Second: Cristian, Craig, Christopher
Third: Wen, Andrea, Joshua, Adam, Lance
Fourth: Rachel, Bryan, Jay, Adrian, Jessica, Supreet, Steven
Back row: Jay, Matthew, Megan

Mass comm class, fall 2013

Carly, Kasha, Cody, Joh'Neil, Manuel, Alan, Monica, Erica and Bella

Carly, Kasha, Cody, Joh’Neil, Manuel, Alan, Monica, Erica and Bella

Feature writing class, winter 2013

Around table: Sara, Sally, Jannelle and Rajvir. In back: Anh Thi, Deeanne, Joshua, Jimmy, Ruben, Colin, Stephen, Kelsey, Jason and Kyle.

Around table: Sara, Sally, Jannelle and Rajvir. In back: Anh Thi, Deeanne, Joshua, Jimmy, Ruben, Colin, Stephen, Kelsey, Jason and Kyle.

Blog #11: Class Highlights

Francisco Alvarado

Throughout the quarter and throughout the pages of our textbook Mass Media in a Changing World,  I had quite a few “Aha” moments in which I found answers to questions (new and old), learned new concepts and phrases, and further developed my media literacy. One of these “Aha” moments was reading that the Yellow journalists of the 1890s forced the hand of the US government, and led to the declaration of the war against Spain in 1898. The media had enough power, even back then, to push the issues it wants.

Another “Aha” moment was when I read that in the average hour of format-style radio,  there are (approximately) 33 minutes of music and talk, 13.5 minutes of information, and 12 minutes of commercials. I’ve always felt that it was the music played for at least 45 minutes every hour, then I find out that it’s half of every hour! Everyone’s got to get paid I guess.

Another “Aha” moment was when I read that Public Relations departments, agencies, specialists, use a tactic named Trial Balloons when they want to gauge public opinion. They “leak” information regarding a major policy in government or a potential merger between companies.

Week 11: Class highlights

Man! There have been so many things that has opened my mind in this class. I have definitely learned a lot and my view of media is slowly changing. Before, I already thought I was aware of what was happening around me in the media but as this class went on, I found that there was so much more that goes into everything.

Media makes sense to me now.  I know that censoring something isn’t the way to do things. Everything should be laid out on the table so that people can make the choice. Eventually, I know they’ll come around. With censoring, I really feel that it will make people more curious than it should. I know that’s what happened to me. When my parents restricted something, I really went out of my way to try to find out what they’re hiding. People will always have curiosity and if that curiosity gets cut off, it’s going to come by 2 x’s bigger.

I realize that the first amendment is just so broad that many people can do and say what they want to express their opinion. That’s great, but at the same time I’m worried about all those who use that power t slander others.

I was also really shocked by Bowling for Columbine when the opening scene was that Michael could get a gun just for opening a bank account. Just how crazy. I’m blown away by this class.

Week 10: Media Ethics

I’m totally weirded out by the ethics that our media is using today. When watching Outfoxed and I saw that reporter just chumming it with President Bush.. it’s like wait what? Is that ethical? Can he just be casually talking about how his wife is hanging out with President Bush’s daughter?

It’s just so weird that the media has their own agenda nowadays. It seems as though, they don’t really care what or how their news gets out there. Just as long as it gets out.

I really hope that this can change soon. I hope to find more ethical people who know where the boundary lines are. It’s just getting crazy. For example, I read an article on the media lobbying complex where retired military analysts who work for a big corporation gets paid to go on the news and talk about their stance on nuclear power plants.

One man had the title Military Analyst but it didn’t say that he was also working for the corporation that would ultimately benefit from his opinion of pushing for more nuclear power. Saying that if more nuclear power plants are built then America can have more jobs. Seriously.. how crazy is that. I feel that, there’s so many ways for people to keep up with the news that the actual news / journalism industry is trying to keep up.

Week 9: Social Media Law

This image is using the techniques of beautiful people and slogan. They’re using slogan with the phrase “Let your beauty be seen”.

Then the ad is using beautiful people because the illustration show this man and woman with great skin complexion, clean cut clothing and fantastic smiles. No flaws or anything.

Week 8: Social Media Law


This article is about a company suing it’s past employee for rights to a twitter account. The twitter account was started by the employee on behalf of the company. But, the employee is now using the account for personal use.

I feel like it’s misappropriation because the employee knew that the twitter account is and was made for the company so why continue to use it for himself. If it reflects the values of the company, anything after could be viewed libel or skewed since he no longer works for them.

Week 7: Internet

The internet was almost a second lifeline for me. I once almost got lost in the virtual world when it first came out. All thanks to my friend Michael. He was obsessed. What’s crazy was that my brother, Michael and I used to play outside each and everyday. And once dial-up was getting faster, we could find Michael online playing DBZ or Neopets.

After a while, it’d just be my brother and I playing outside everyday while Michael took up all his free time using the internet to keep playing his games. It was getting to the point where he refused to do anything else but stay inside his room and play. I was honestly worried. After a while, high school started and he saw that he wanted to be outside again. He took up skateboarding and the rest is history. The internet no longer affected his life.

Week 11: Class Highlights

Throughout this quarter, this class has effected my media literacy. This class has taught me about the history many forms of media, what they do for the people, and the issues and controversies that came along with it. However, this class doesn’t change my view of media. I still have the same beliefs and views of media that I had when I walked into this class for the first time in the beginning of the Winter Quarter.  For quite a while, i believe that many media outlets don’t really serve the greater good of the people. It just tells us what we wanna hear.  This class did however, teach me to be more analytical of the information that the media puts out. My media literacy has improved since i feel like i can read between the lines now.

Week 9: Propaganda in Advertising

This ad by Cadillac uses both “Flag Waving” and “Transfer (Association)”. The ad mentions a lot of great things (such as Disney, Amazon, Wright Brothers, etc.) that have come out of American garages, and associates them with Cadillac cars, which are from American Garages like the many examples the ad has used. It is also a flag waving ad since it talks about the many great things to have come out of American Garages, implying that many of Cadillac’s compettitors aren’t that great since they aren’t from American Garages, which is patriotic.

Week 10: Media Ethics

Today, I think Media Ethics have hit an all time low. Because most news outlets today are owned by major conglomerates, I believe they all give you biased information. Most of the information media gives you is either black or white. Half of the information the media feeds you is based on liberal beliefs and ideals, and the other half is based on conservative beliefs and ideals. The fact that the Daily Show with Jon Stewart gives you more truthful information than many other major news outlets, and the fact that you can trust its information more than many news outlets is pretty sad. The Daily Show is just comedic, satrical news program that airs on Comedy Central. It doesn’t even air on major news networks like CNN, NBC, and Fox News, networks were you should be able to get reliable information since that is their purpose. Also, magazines don’t really help either. Most magazines tells people how to look, especially women, since they photoshop their cover models to the point it doesn’t even look like them anymore. It alters reality, especially for those women who actually want to look like them. Today media doesn’t serve for the greater good of the people, it just gives us what we want to see and hear, and not the information that we should have. And if they don’t tell you what you want to hear, then they try to manipulate you into having the beliefs they want you to have.

Week 2: Media Impact or Books

One of the first favorite books a had was Wayside School Gets A Little Stanger by Louis Sacher. It was one of my first favorite books i remember, since i remember reading this book over and over again as a kid, and the book was part of a trilogy, with this one in particular being the last. Nowadays it just serves as nostalgia. One of my other favorite books i have read was Flags of our Fathers by James Bradley. It is about a group of soldiers fighting in the Battle of Iwo Jima during WWII, and how they are remembered for raising the flag on Iwo Jima. It was my favorite book that i read in middle school, and it got me interested into knowing about the WWII since i found it to be pretty interesting. Because of this, i started playing Call of Duty a lot, since at the time they were about WWII. My last favorite book was I Am Jackie Chan: My Life in Action. It is literally my last favorite book, since its the last book i recall reading that i have enjoyed. I havn’t actually had a favorite book after this, i have been a “required reader” ever since.  It is an autobiography about Jackie Chan, and how he grew up in Hong Kong, and how he ended up becoming a famous actor. He was also one of my favorite actors growing up.

Blog Post# 11

by Isaac Velasquez

After completing this class my eyes were opened to all the things that happen behind the scenes that we usually don’t see. A lot of the history of all the mediums that we learned about was really interesting. It was also interesting to see how every invention of media affected the medium before it. I have a better understanding now of what different things mean. I now also know a good amount of history and controversies that are associated with every aspect of media.

I still view media that same but now I have a better sense of media literacy to where I can dissect the images more carefully and understand what it is trying to do.  The type of advertisement methods that we learned about really changed the way I saw media. It was really interesting to see how companies try to play with human emotions to try and sell their products.

Week 11: Class Highlights

While in Journalism class, there were a few “Aha” moments, which really caught me off guard. My first “Aha” moment was when I learned about how much the media uses scapegoats. This is something I observed during Brandon’s presentation in which people used Grand Theft Auto 5 as a scapegoat for their poor judgements. This is something people seemed to do in the Bowling for Columbine incident where Marilyn Manson was blamed by parents for the horrific incident. Another “Aha” moment in journalism was when I learned how the media edits their photos so make them more appealing towards their audiences. I learned this when it was pointed out in class how the image of the Boston Bombing was edited to appeal more to certain readers. And lastly, my third favorite “Aha” moment was when I did my own research paper and presentation and discovered that reality television actually does have a profound effect on the behaviors of teenagers. It actually alters the way the act and the way they perceive things, which leads them to act out more than kids who do not watch would.

Week 10: Media Ethics

I feel that the media has a pretty poor sense of ethics. They seem to post whatever will catch attention, and twists stories to appeal to a certain audience or to get more attention than they normally would. One way they practice unethical behaviors is that they alter pictures and videos through photoshop or programs such as those in order to portray a different concept rather than the truth. The way the images of the Boston marathon bombing were edited were a great example of how unethical behaviors mislead people. People took more of an interest in that image because there was more blood than there actually was, but at the same time some companies edited the image to make it more appealing to those who could not stand such a gory image by replacing a severed leg from the image. Although the media has certain rules that they follow in order to be considered “Ethical,” the practices that they generally follow in order to attempt to draw more attention to their stories are what make them unethical.

Week 8: Media Law

Media Law; Brian Ho

A media law case that I am going to be briefly describe is Capital Record Inc vs Thomas-Rasset. Defendant Appllee Jammie Thomas-Rasset was found legally responsible in district court for illegally distributing copyrighted music over the Internet. Capital Record Inc owned many catalogs of music and Thomas-Rasset was caught distributing 24 songs that had its rights owned by Capital Record itself. In my opinion, I felt that Capital Record Inc had the right to pursue legal actions towards Thomas-Rasset because Thomas-Rasset did not ask for Capital Record Inc if they can share the songs or not and the songs was protected by rights.



Week 10: Media Ethics

Week 10; Brian Ho

These I feel like Media Ethics relies on the truth from journalist and news reporters. They are the front of the news because they document it along with reporting it live to their viewers. Also, there are many bias news groups like Fox, CNN and many others out there that just want to talk about their views and not hear upon others. There is a lot of censorship to now. Many people are not able to let their voice be heard so they have to rely on the internet where it is much easier to publish an opinion piece, rather then saying it in public and get in trouble for it. Also, these days there are many advertisements in media sources so sometimes it is overwhelming with them. Money is generated through advertisements, so I can see why there a lot of advertisements swarmed with them.

Week 9: Propaganda in Advertising

Week 9; Brian Ho

The two propaganda techniques that I am going to be focusing on is appeal to fear and appeal to authority. The advertisement that I chose was a Nazi Propaganda poster that was in 1936 that shows a Nazi soldier in a medieval armor holding a shield and sword. The purpose of the poster was to show fear to the Soviets while letting the Soviets know that the Nazis is the main authority that they should listen to. It does show appeal to fear because during the 1936, the Nazi army was slowly rising to be the top in the world while all their propaganda posters were meant to show authority.



Class Highlights

- Shreya Zalani

Out of the many Aha Moments, here are three that are important to me.

1. Chapter 1: The Audience is the Final Arbiter of meaning – While I knew that the audience is an important part of mass media and communication, it was interesting to note the audience’s large impact. I was surprised to note how the meaning of posters changed because of what the audience thought of them.

2. Chapter 3: Codex, Chapbooks and Dime novels – Reading is one of my most favorite things to do and finding books for cheap and books that were readily available is sometimes a problem. It was interesting to see how early books were and how books that sold for little money helped spread literacy and entertainment.

3. Chapter 5: Hand painted illustrations in early magazines – In present day printing, there is such a large quantity of printing done at one time that it is hard to think of even printing a document one by one to have multiple copies. Learning about hand-painted illustrations made me appreciate the hard work and talent that went into each one.

Week 11: Class Highlights

Class Highlights

Brian Ho

I learned a lot in Journalism. What I learned that I will definitely continue to use is media literacy and perception. I learned that I can easily be persuaded by media either to buying a particular product or siding with a situation like a presidential election.

I still view media the same way as I always do, but I am just a little more cautious on the media trying to perceive me. After watching OutFoxed, I realized that the media always choose a side. There is not an equal news station that speaks on both views, it is either one side or the other.

I still believe the First Amendment is really important for media impacts. It is important for everyone to have those rights, other wise no one would have freedom of expression to voice their opinions, especially the media.

Week 11: Class Highlights

Class Highlights

I learned a variety of lessons that involved media in class. I view the media somewhat in a different way. Before this class, I knew a little bit knowledge about our media, but because of this class, it broadened my mind. For example, I always knew the news could be a bit sketchy, but I didn’t realize that they can curve their announcements so that the audience can view a topic in a different way. For example, FOX news wanting to make Democrats look dumb and Republicans smart. I knew that the First Amendment is quite controversy especially since it’s freedom of media. But in my opinion, it’s still a problem that the media is taking advantage of this where it’s probably too much freedom of speech.

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