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Monday, January 19, 2004

Thoughts on Handout...
"Codes of Online Sexuality: Celebrity, Gender and Marketing on the Web"

I think that Dr. Lambiase chose an interesting approach to the otherwise been- there-done-that topic of celebrities and their sexuality I was a little surprised that the following didn't merit "celebrity status" in said issue of People magazine:
Oprah, Madonna, and Denzel Washtington.

Parts of the article made me say, "What the --." I think that perhaps the author tries too hard to read into some things and unfortunately rehashes some already widely-held beliefs. Regarding Avril Lavigne, it's been said before that although she has talent, she is a mere puppet of the pop yet anti-pop industry. She proved this herself and showed just how little she actually knows about rock when she mispronounced Bowie on the MTV awards show. Her "look," like many other artists', is constructed by a team of record execs. Yet I hardly believe that such people put a tie (noose) around her neck for any other reason than to establish a new trend. Likewise with her wristbands, I don't think that they represent the chains of society or anything even remotely related to contortion.

I am a bit bothered that the author begins with the depiction of "celebrities" on the web then clearly focuses not on "celebrities" but "female celebrities." Men do get their mention, but it is later in the article and not as in depth as the female observations.

I find it somewhat interesting that some celebrities that are not usually described as "sexy"-- Al Roker and Rosie O'Donell--use not actual photos but cartoons or caricatures instead. I wonder if this is common for such celebrities.
Thoughts on Chapter 1...

I like the analogy that the authors use to describe the purpose of the book which is to overcome the "law of instrument" ("according to which a little boy who only knows a hammer considers that everything is in need of a pounding").

When I read this, it reminded me of what we discussed in class last week--how "quantheads" have one way of looking at things that could seem like they have tunnel vision and how the same can be true of qualitative researchers. I don't think that the key to a happy medium is to get both sides together for a hugfest and Rice Krispy Treats as they attempt reconcilliation. Quant- and qual- researchers can learn a lot from each other, but how likely is it that they'll ever manage to stay in the same room long enough to do so? Just kidding.

I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that maybe, just maybe, it is possible to have a job that you're passionate about yet not be so consumed that your approach/way of thinking is the end-all and be-all. If quat- and qual- researchers are journalists at heart (are they?) then have they not learned about points of view and getting all sides of the story. What happened to objectivity, or is that a moot point in this discussion?

I'm not an expert in either areas of research, so I am looking forward to much learning and discussion.
It's a good thing that we don't have class today, because I feel AWFUL! My allergies and sinuses are MAD AT ME and have rendered me damn near helpless! I went to the doctor today, was there for an hour and a half, and walked out with FOUR prescriptions. So I hope that something works.

For the record -- I don't think that it's fair to have an assignment due on a holiday, but maybe I'm just bitching because I don't feel well.

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

Hello, just getting my feet wet!

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