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Media and the law: privacy issues

Sunday, April 01, 2012

New legislation proposed by government would allow them to monitor all emails, calls and web use, without requiring permission from a magistrate.  A great debating point for any lesson, and am important issue.
Read a brief article about it here.

privatising policing

Saturday, March 03, 2012

The recent news story about the privatisation of certain police services has already sparked some vibrant reactions on facebook and other social media.  I am using it as a starter in my next crime and deviance lesson to consider what impact it might have on policing and society in general.  It offers a great opportunity to reflect on different theoretical perspectives. 

This is how it has been reported on the BBC.

Media and Image

Sunday, January 29, 2012

This is a fantastic commentary of the images of women portrayed by the media, commenting on how they project an impossibly flawless ideal.  Jean Kilbourne argues, not just that this image leads to increasing eating disorders and mental health issues among teenage girls, but that the objectification of women’s bodies contributes to a growth in violence against women.

Watch the video and see if you agree.

read more...»

TED - videoed talks

Monday, January 23, 2012

TED is a fantastic resources of talks on a multitude of subjects.  Go and have a browse - you are sure to find something interesting / fun / challenging / useful / eye-opening… 

I like this selection on ‘what makes us happy?’

Feminism and Technology

Sunday, January 15, 2012

This year’s CES (Consumer Electronics Show) has caused some controversy, with companies employing ‘booth babes’ to help promote their products.  You can watch a news clip here, featuring interviews with attendees and ‘babes’.

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Violence and terror - Bauman

Monday, December 12, 2011

Zygmunt Bauman: ‘No one is in control. That is the major source of contemporary fear’ – video.  For Zygmunt Bauman the world is marked by a division between power and politics. While politics is defined by nations, power no longer recognises national boundaries

Crime and Deviance - London riots

Monday, December 05, 2011

The government published last week their interim report on the violence during the summer.  You can find it here.

The LSE and the Guardian newspaper also carried out research, interviewing many of those involved.  The findings are summarised in an article here.

Press Ethics

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Any student studying Mass Media for Unit 3, should be aware of the Leveson inquiry - a goldmine of examples!  The BBC have been doing a rolling commentary on the witness statements, including that by Campbell here.

Family incomes

I’m having trouble uploading resources to the website currently, but there are plenty of stories in the news that provide a good basis for discussion.  One on the BBC today questions how easy it is to live on £40,000pa (the average combined income for two adults in the UK).  Read it here.

Lords, Commoners and The Queen

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


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More on voting and the perils of psephology

Friday, April 09, 2010

David talked of the validity of polling yesterday. Some historical context might be useful here. In the 1992 Election there was a general consensus that Labour should win, borne out by the majority of polling. The Election results demonstrated that the polls had been wrong, with the Tories winning relatively decisively. So what went wrong with the polls?

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Class and the General Election

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

How can social scientists get a representative sample of the population and gauge the outcome of the General Election? Newsnight has some ideas and so do we.

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Politics and Impression Management

Friday, January 15, 2010

I guess my colleagues over on the Politics blog may also be interested in this, but it grabbed my attention, and I have to say, amused me.  Apparently Speaker John Berkow is behind the launching of a computer game which allows students to get a taste of life as an MP.

Of course, nasty cynical sociologists - like myself - will ask you to consider the extent to which this can be seen as a crafty bit of impression management by the politicians.  And while we’re on that front - what other strategies can people -and institutions - use to try and ensure that their actions are seen as legitimate?  It’s the art of impression management - and there is a rich vein of the study of this sort of thing in sociology.  For starters, investigate Goffman’s book, Asylums, where he identifies the various roles inmates in institutions like hospitals, schools and prisons adopt.

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Friday, February 01, 2008

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