1) What do you do?
I am a talk show host, professional singer, songwriter, reiki master, media activist, technology trainer, humanitarian and advocate for women and children. I hold a Masters Degree in Media Studies.
2) Tell me about your latest work or project in media literacy
In April of this year, I decided to introduce media literacy to the world within a talk show format. Conceptually, in using the variety talk show Shake It Up! TV as a presentation vehicle to share the human experience, I am able to disseminate various media literacy concepts creatively through videos, news, music and social interaction. There is such complexity in information reported in today’s news and media worlds, so I feel it is important to consider our audience from a multicultural perspective. Being that the internet is used more and more as an entertainment playland, anyone can take a “selfie” that suddenly goes viral fueled by extreme shock and awe content. How do you gain perspective on what is being communicated through various high-intensity media channels? It is my hope to stimulate the viewer to think about what he or she is experiencing as a product and why.
3) Why is media literacy important to you?
Within the next ten years, we will see an explosion in the area of entertainment that will be centered around the “virtual” experience. The new technologies will allow the viewer to believe in a self-initiated simulated reality that evokes reactions from physical, emotional and psychological planes. Consider how virtual technology used in video games not only enhances the user experience but has the ability to manipulate and control human behavior through psychologically-induced triggers. Assuming this future expansion, I strongly believe if we are able to educate the public with media literacy as an integral component of various communication platforms, the viewer-consumer will be in a better position to establish individual preferences as to what to watch and how to experience it.
4) What are you most excited about in the media literacy field?
Media Literacy is evolving as an educational tool spilling over into other disciplines of learning. Unfortunately, with the birth of evolving entertainment genres there is so much material to work with in film, television and the news—one will never run out of projects. Also, thanks to advanced social media technologies, there are so many creative ways to broadcast its message. I hope to see media literacy more as a pre-requisite to media technology studies in post-secondary education rather than commingled in with English or other journalism courses.
5) Why did you become a NAMLE member, what benefits do you see to membership, and how will it support your work?
As a NAMLE member, I am in a position to connect with media related groups online to broaden my knowledge base, connect with other media professionals and utilize these sources for future content when producing online talk shows. What I learn as a NAMLE member will be shared with my audiences and fellow alumni from the New School in New York City. It is a benefit to anyone who thirsts for understanding the world of Media Literacy.