Hacker puppets explain how camera angles shape our perception

Gus the hacker puppeteer (previously) writes, "Since The Media Show began, people have been asking us, 'What do hacking, digital literacy, and media literacy have to do with each other? I don't see the connection.'"

For us, it's always been obvious. Traditional media literacy tries to help people understand the structures that shape how we perceive what's in the media. This can be characteristics of a show or image itself, from portrayal of people who aren't like us, to background music making us feel excited or sad. It can also include an understanding of the company structures and advertising which shape what does and doesn't get on the air.

Hacking and digital literacy are also about understanding structures: exploiting networks, reading and manipulating addresses, challenging the limits of copy protection, etc. Both traditional media literacy and digital media literacy skills can be used for "reading" and understanding as well as "writing" or hacking together media and technology yourself, using your knowledge of structures to make it effective.

The latest episode of The Media Show answers a basic media literacy question — which it turns out a lot of people also ask Google! Our hacker puppets spend this episode exploring how camera angles make audiences feel about a character in a film or show (even our current favorite cartoon, Steven Universe! How exactly do you make characters that tug on our heartstrings so hard, Rebecca Sugar?)

Stay tuned for upcoming Media Show episodes on traditional media literacy, including our exploration of media monopoly as we answer the question "Why does the radio play the same songs over and over"!