Team 5 Assignment 2

  • The mainstream media often face enormous challenges in trying to give audiences an accurate picture of the world. For individual journalists, there are extraordinary pressures and obstacles to getting at the truth and telling the stories audiences want and need. You may select Jeffrey Wigand, 60 Minutes host Mike Wallace, producer Lowell Bergman, executive producer Don Hewitt, the Wall Street Journal editor who helped stop the smear or the NY Times reporter who exposed the inside story on how CBS handled the Wigand affair. All of these people had significant personal and institutional pressures, some more than others. Please do not select your character because you believe everyone will write about that person. No team can analyze this case the same as someone else, unless they cheat. Your essay should focus on how the principles and values of concealment and revelation apply to the tobacco case or the case at CBS News. 500 words.

Hello Team 5,

Some excellent points were made in Question 1 analyzing the film using concepts from secrecy/revelation. A couple of grammatical issues “core principles and values were to lie”: principles and values are things and not actions. Each question was answered with a demonstrated comprehension of secrecy and the events that occurred in The Insider and, with a few exceptions, well-written.

The film “The Insider” shared the true story behind the events Jeffrey Wigand had to face and the time leading up to his “60 Minutes” Interview. Wigand’s life was turned upside down when he got caught in between the tobacco war. After being fired from his job at Brown & Williamson (B&W), he was restrained, harassed, and even threatened. The values behind concealment and revelation were prominent throughout the tobacco case. The first main example of concealment was the Brown & Williamson company restricting Jeffrey under a contract. After getting fired from the B&W company, Wigand was contacted by Bergman, an executive at CBS who needed help interpreting a few documents. After this meeting, Wigand was forced by B&W into a more restricted non-disclosure and confidentiality agreement with harsh consequences if he did not cooperate. Dr. Wigand knew too much about the tobacco company’s undercover attempts to increase sales and had intel information that could potentially damage the reputation and public image of the company. Thus, jeopardizing his value/benefits with them. The harsh restriction from B&W was also protecting the company from their lies and confidentiality. Ethically speaking, the company was acting in favor of their own interest rather than that of the public eye. Wigand and Bergman, on the other hand, believed that the public should know the truth behind the company’s hidden agenda. 

As the film progressed, Wigand struggled to decide whether or not he would abide by his contract of concealing information. Though his values eventually changed after receiving death threats from anonymous, but likely B&W personnel. This led him to change his mind and contact Bergman to have the interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes”. Wigan then had a revelation about the company during court, by speaking the truth and therefore exposing B&W. Wigan and Bergman both experienced tremendous risk and backlash as they were unsure where the story could lead. Wigan didn’t only have to look out for himself, but for his family as well: It can be understood why his wife left him as the constant fear of looking over their shoulders was too much to handle and greatly interfered with their private life. Bergman and Mike Wallace also dealt with the possibility of a lawsuit, shall they air the official interview which reveals the classified information of the tobacco company. For weeks, they were unsure of whether or not they would air the interview and what the possible repercussions of doing so would be. Brown and Williamson’s’ core principles and values during this dilemma were to lie and manipulate the public into thinking that Wigan was exaggerating; when in reality they were covering their illegal and nasty methods of boosting sales by adding other chemicals to the already addictive substance, known as nicotine. Despite the case becoming increasingly popular and headlining nearly everywhere, they pushed to make sure that the general population would understand the risks of continuing to consume tobacco product from B&W. Both were able to achieve this by getting the public to be concerned with this issue or in other words, raising awareness for the problem. 

  • How does Jeffrey Wigand’s non-disclosure agreement (NDA) affect the flow of information in The Insider? What legitimate argument, if any, could Brown and Williamson (B&W) make in support of the agreement? What NDAs have recently been used in the public sector? Using the critical perspective, what are the implications of NDAs for government employees? 

The non-disclosure agreement (NDA) is a legal contract between at least two parties sharing confidential material with the purpose of not sharing it with anybody and wish to restrict access to a third party.  Wigand was unemployed and if he breached his NDA he would lose his medical coverage which he needed to treat his daughter who had asthma. The dilemma of the NDA held Wigand on deciding what he should do. The Brown & Williamson company knew that the information Wigand had was important, sort of like a “secret formula” and if Wigand revealed the information, other companies would copy Brown and Williamson’s formula and cause them to lose millions of dollars.

According to the government, “President Donald Trump’s top advisers were asked to sign non-disclosure agreements (NDAs), forcing them to keep quiet about what happens in the White House”. For the government, the value of information is a priority and they make their employees sign NDAs because in case someone leaves, the government would not want the employee to reveal information that could harm the country or the people. Another reason is that when the government makes their employees sign these contracts, the employees are less likely to break the contract as they know they could be sued. The employees also work with people’s personal information and if any of it leaks, it could cause chaos because people trust the government to keep their information safe. 

  • John Scanlon and Terry Lenzner were hired by B&W to attack Wigand’s reputation. Jack Palladino and his team of investigators were hired by Richard Scruggs to counter their allegations. Using McLuhan as a lens, analyze the forms of media used by both Scanlon/Lenzner and Palladino. If this war over Wigand’s reputation had occurred in 2018, would today’s media have made things different? If so, how? 300 words.

McLuhan notes that we as consumers blindly observe and take notes of the messages media presents when in reality we should be more mindful of their push of agendas. Utilizing McLuhan’s outlook that “the medium is the message” we can reason that Scanlon/Lanzer created a 500-page dossier not to just advise the public about their ex-employee Wigand’s faults, but also to assassinate his character and disprove him as credible witness to the hidden effects of nicotine in cigarettes; this was an action taken in order to prevent big tobacco companies from losing millions in revenue because of Wigan’s claims worrying cigarette smokers. 

Scanlon/Lenzner disbursement of their dossier via television news stations solidifies McLuhan’s perspective because in sharing this dossier with news outlets, not only do Scanlon/Lenzner imply nationally that Wigand’s faults make him incompetent to share truth about big tobacco, but also embarrass and humiliate the fearful and paranoid Wigand further because news of his faults would be ubiquitous. Palladino allows The Wall Street Journal to publish an article exposing that evidence of Wigand ’s allegations in the 500-page dossier is backed by scant or contradictory evidence. In sharing the news of Wigand’s allegations to be false, The Wall Street Journal exemplifies McLuhan’s outlook because rather than the maintenance of Wigand’s reputation matters, what matters is that a credible source is solidifying that the effects of nicotine in tobacco should be dispersed to the American public.

Currently, the media looks to disperse allegations in a manner quickly and ubiquitously, so if the war over Wigand’s reputation were to happen in 2018, it would be trending on social media via the internet, online news, television, and print sources, and even in worldwide news. False accusations concerning Wigand’s character may have been disputed via internet communication, television and internet interviews.  

  • In the film, Bergman, Wallace, and Hewitt attend a meeting with CBS Corporate.  CBS general counsel Helen Caperelli informs them of “tortious interference” and its implications for the 60 Minutes Wigand piece. Provide a detailed analysis of the rhetoric used by the participants in the meeting. For each speaker, who is their intended audience, and how do they use the modes of rhetoric? 300 words.


     During the film, The Insider, main characters Bergman, Wallace, and Hewitt attend a meeting with CBS general counsel Helen Caperelli to discuss how the 60 Minutes Wigand piece will affect the company, demonstrating different modes of rhetoric throughout.  Lowell Bergman, an investigative journalist for CBS 60 Minutes, is one of the main men behind Wigand’s piece on exposing the Brown and Williamson tobacco company. Bergman’s intended audience is the general public, specifically people who support Brown and Williamson’s tobacco products since the company is lying about their cigarettes being more addictive. Throughout the process of the interview with Wigand coming together, Bergman uses the rhetorical mode of narration, including background information on the tobacco company and the rhetoric mode of description, giving details and creating a picture for the public to visualize. Bergman also uses logos, from the rhetoric triangle, to focus on the negative facts that Brown and Williamson have been manipulating nicotine through ammonia chemistry and hiding it from the public.  

Mike Wallace, an American journalist, and Don Hewitt, a news producer for CBS, both had an intended audience similar to Bergman’s. Their intended audience was the general public interested in exclusive news pieces such as the interview with Wigand and the interview conducted at the beginning of the film with Hezbollah founder, Sheikh Fadlallah. Although Wallace and Hewitt acquire the same intended audience as Bergman, their modes of rhetoric differ. Wallace and Hewitt both used the rhetorical modes of compare and contrast, and analogy since both end up siding with CBS Corporate to edit the interview in order to prevent the risk of the company getting sued by B&W. They both compared and contrasted how things would turn out in the future if they left Wigand’s interview unedited. Wallace and Hewitt used ethos, from the rhetoric triangle, as well, demonstrating their “goodwill” to CBS by editing the tapes and following orders.  

CBS general counsel, Helen Caperelli, used the rhetorical mode of cause and effect, to explain how this interview could potentially have big consequence for CBS if it gets aired to the public, due to the risky content that could leave CBS with a billion-dollar lawsuit against B&W. Her intended audience were the people present at the meeting, which includes Bergman, Wallace, and Hewitt. Caparelli also used ethos, from the rhetoric triangle, which allowed her to use her credibility and authority at CBS Corporate, to weigh in on the topic of the interview and how it might affect the company altogether. Thus, guiding the participants of the meeting to what might be best for CBS in the end. 

Question 1 – Nathaniel Cuevas and Pedro Almeyda

Question 2 – Josue San Martin

Question 3 – Dane Witter

Question 4 – Veronica Martinez

Editors – Alana Ortiz and Pedro Almeyda 

Works Cited

“NDAs and Confidential Settlements Shake State Capitols and City Halls.” Governing Magazine: State and Local Government News for America’s Leaders, Governing, www.governing.com/topics/mgmt/gov-nda-states-trump-confidential-settlement-employee-cities.html.

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Alana Ortiz Team 5

In the article, The End of Solitude, William Deresiewicz speaks about how technology is altering our lives our privacy, and our solitude. As a millennial, I find myself agreeing with this argument because growing up in an age of technology has giving me many opportunities but also taken some away. In a sense that we are now more connected than ever but also further apart. sentence fragment When Deresiewicz said “a teenager, I know had sent 3000 text messages one recent month that’s 100 and day or about one every 10 walking minutes, morning, noon and night, weekdays and weekends class time, lunch time, homework time, and tooth brushing time. So, on average, she’s never alone for more than 10 minutes at once. Which means she’s never alone.” It really surprised me and so I started looking through my phone records and counting the number of text messages and discovered that it is roughly the same amount as the person he spoke about. Then I checked the average amount of time I spent on social media in one week, which was roughly 21 hours per week, in total, that is more than 10% of the time I have in one week. This means that in the little time that I am not texting, I am using social media, which indicates that I’m never alone, not even for ten minutes. Seeing these results frightened me in a sense and so, I decided to start the 48-hour news blackout. At first, I found myself looking at my phone ever 2 minutes, picking it up and opening Instagram or Twitter before remembering I wasn’t supposed to. It was like this for a while, and then I picked up a book, something I hadn’t done in years. I found myself reading for most of the time during the blackout.  Now I promised myself I would read at least one book every month from here on out. I also went out with my friends and left my phone at home, which made me realize how superficial our friendships had been because we would all be on our phones every time we went out. Of course, the second the blackout was over I picked up my phone, and checked every social media and news outlet, because at the end of the day it is not realistic to our world to live without the news. The news is important in our society because they allow people to be informed of most things going on around them and judge the situations how they please, and living without that is a change that we are not ready to face. As Deresiewicz said, “I believe men are generally still scared of the dark.” 

You need to separate this information into paragraphs and be sure to check and double check your grammar and punctuation. Overall you did the reading and reflected on your experience, but you did not mention the news until the second to last sentence. 

TEAM 5

IDS 3309 – How We Know What We Know

5 February 2019

Ghost In The Shell

I. Public Security Section 9 is an anti-terrorism arm of the government, operating on the edge, or sometimes beyond, the boundaries of the law. Citizens are kept in the dark of the activities, and even the existence, of section 9.

a. In its covert activities dealing with the Puppet Master, does section 9 go too far? Explain.

When dealing with the Puppet Master, Section 9 went too far in trying to capture the suspect. 

The puppet master has been “ghost hacking” innocent individuals by controlling their brain and memories. These innocent individuals who have no idea about the puppet master. On the pursuit to catching the Puppet Master, Section 9 crossed many boundaries, invading the citizens privacies and putting their lives in danger. They went about handling many situations quiet recklessly. In many ways they abused their power to have an advantage. A great example was how Section 9 agent Togusa was able to ask security to weigh the pressure sensors from two cars in the garage to help him figure out that more than one person has snuck into the building. Another example is how Kusanagi was able to take control of car through connecting her brain. With how connected our world is through technology, there is room for the government to take advantage and invading the citizens privacy. 

 

many grammatical errors and problems with sentence structure. This should have been proofread by author and the team editor.

b. Is a government ever justified in violating its own laws to ensure the safety of its citizens? If not, why not? If so, what examples can you provide, either from the film or real life?

The government can be justified in violating its own laws to ensure the safety of others. The common example of course from the film is Section 9 crossing boundaries and invading citizens privacy so they would be able to capture the Puppet Master. Although Section 9 handled a lot of the situations quiet recklessly, putting the citizens lives in danger, they had to invade others privacy to solve the mystery and defeat the Puppet Master. A real-life example to justifying the government violating their own laws is the date 9/11. Almost 3,000 people died during 9/11 back in 2001. After that tragic terror attack, for the safety of our nation, its vital to protect the people and use extreme measures. 

Another example of government violating its own laws can be found here:

 

some of the ideas here seem to conflict with the answer to 1A. This could also use more information and analysis.

c. Is a government ever justified in keeping secret its violations of the law? Explain and give an example.

Personally, I think that government is automatically justified to keep violation of law a secret because it serves as a mere purpose to keep the public, and it’s people safe. However, shall a government have to bend its own laws in order to protect its citizens, citizens themselves should never have to speculate whether or not a government is actually imposing on its own

laws. This would create a sense of immediate danger. This is because the whole idea and point of a government violating its regulations are to get to whatever issue or threat there is present prior to it becoming eminent enough to leak to mass amounts of people. In “Ghost In The Shell”, Section 9 is on the hunt for Project 2501, or The Puppet Master. Towards the end of the film, they assign Kusanagi very clear directions to try and capture Puppet Master (in order to interrogate him and extract private/classified information). However, if the capture is unsuccessful, then she should kill Puppet Master in order to eliminate the thread and possibility of his escape and manipulation of more peoples memories. Thus, I believe it is indeed justifiable for government to keep its violation of laws classified so that the mass majority shall not have to worry and/or be concerned with national threat. 

II. The sophistication of many technologies in the film is futuristic; their existence is not. Bionics, the Internet, and artificial intelligence are today relatively commonplace. One of the most disturbing scenes in the film is the garbage man with false, implanted memories. This is not all that far-fetched. Studies show that even so simple a technological artifact as a photograph can be used to create false memories that people are certain are real. 

a. How is information technology used in the world of Ghost in the Shell to influence and control behavior and perception?   

Information technology is defined as the use of systems, such as computers, to store, retrieve and send information. In the film ‘Ghost in the shell’ information technology is used in order to influence and control behavior in multiple ways. The film shows a version of the world in which reality and fantasy are intertwined which leads to confusion of real-life events with make-believe. It illustrates information technology as a valued commodity when in reality it has the ability to obstruct human interaction. An example of this would be how the use of social media in past years has changed the way we live completely, and in a way, the movie is a very close representation of how reality in our modern world is fused with elements of fantasy. -Alana Ortiz

Another example of how technology can be found here:

https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/behavioural-insights/true-potential-technology-change-behaviour

3. In his essay, Deresiewicz argues “…that solitude enables us to secure the integrity of the self as well as to explore it.” 

a. How does Major Kusanagi utilize solitude? What insight does it give her? 

In the movie “Ghost in the Shell” when Major Kusanagi dives into the ocean, she is experiencing solitude. While in the ocean, she felt fear, anxiety, loneliness, darkness and even hope. Kusanagi even mentioned how she feels like she can almost “turn into someone else” as she approaches surface level. Being alone made her realize all those internal feelings that she had. Even though she is a cyborg, she feels hope that she can somehow feel something greater one day. Solitude made her explore herself, something she cannot do when she is surrounded with people and technology. After diving and going back to the surface, her thoughts change. Working with people, utilizing technology the companion of everybody else makes it almost impossible for her to explore herself. It can be understood that this is one of the main factors as to why she allowed Puppet Master to merge with her after all at the end of the film. 

b. Is Deresiewicz right when he says we are approaching a time when information technology makes solitude socially undesirable, or even impossible? Has that time already occurred in the world of the film? Explain your answer.

Deresiewicz is right when he said that technology makes solitude undesirable but not impossible, just harder. The time has occurred in the world of the film since information technology is all around it. It is undesirable because all the people are constantly communicating with each other through technology. In the film when the people were working, they were constantly talking to themselves through technology. The people are used to technology and use it to being close to each other. It is not impossible though. As seen in the movie, Major Kusanagi takes time to dive into the ocean to being alone. Even though when she finishes diving, Batou is waiting for her on the boat but Kusanagi had time for herself. It is harder since technology unites people and when someone is alone they are instantly trying to get the companion of someone else and technology makes it easier.

Another example of how technology has made solitude seemingly impossible can be found here: 

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/how-technology-has-ended-solitude_us_589e4c6be4b0cd37efcfe886

4. The movie was based on a manga originally published in 1989. 

a. Various forms of media (using McLuhan’s definition of a medium as “an extension of ourselves”) have had an impact on the way people use, create, store, access, and communicate information. Give 3 historical examples of such media and describe their impact.

Over time, all forms of media have evolved and made an impact on the way mankind uses, creates, stores, accesses and communicates information with one another. Three defining examples of media that have made a significance throughout history are newspapers, radio and television. 

    The introduction of newspapers was created by Johann Carolus in the year 1605. The first newspaper was officially published in Germany, but, within a few decades, newspapers could be found in all major cities in Europe, eventually making its way to America in 1690 thanks to Benjamin Franklin. The newspaper is considered an important form of media since this allowed the information of news, events, stories, and perspectives to reach a broad spectrum at a fast pace. 

      The development of radio began in 1892 by Nikolai Tesla with his demonstration of wireless radio communication. Even though newspapers maintained a stronghold over delivering news, radio became an important source of media in order to broadcast news across the globe and eventually lead to an easier way to gather a wide source of information, news broadcasts and over time, different varieties of music. 

     Although the radio has changed the way media functions, television, on the other hand, has made one of the biggest historical impressions on mankind. The first electronic television set was invented by Philo Taylor Farnsworth in 1927. Televisions allowed people to receive information at an even faster rate than newspapers or the radio ever could. Not only can news be transmitted to people around the world, but, shows, movies, and commercials were also broadcasted with a live view, which was something that was never before seen, creating a quick fascination for one of the most used media still relevant in today’s society. 

b.  Select the one medium that has appeared after 1989 which has had the greatest impact on the information landscape. Explain.

            One medium that has appeared after 1989 that has made an impact on the information landscape is the World Wide Web, becoming available to the public in the year 1991. Without the World Wide Web, society, as we know today, would be almost non-existent since it has become a part of our daily lives, changing the way communication functions and exists. This medium is responsible for the way we connect with others across the world by using platforms such as e-mail and social media sparking influence, collaboration and creativity amongst mankind due to the free-flow environment that World Wide Web provides. It has revolutionized the way we share and impact our society since it provides hands-on experience with the way we engage with each other and new information.

c.   How might the technology in answer 4b, above, have affected the story?

The World Wide Web has provided an easy way to communicate and access information at our fingertips. In the movie, Ghost in a Shell, the World Wide Web

affected the storyline since the main plot deals with cyborgs and the hacking of other individuals in a world advanced in technology. The Puppet Master uses this technology to his advantage in order to access the minds of others and manipulate them. A clear example of this is when he implants and uploads false memories into the garbage man in order to make him believe that he actually had a family. If the cyborgs wouldn’t have had access to the World Wide Web, then the story and plot would have been derailed. 

Examples of how the medium of the World Wide Web impacts the information landscape are here: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/how-technology-has-ended-solitude_us_589e4c6be4b0cd37efcfe886

Works Cited

Frenzel, Louis E. “Tesla Invented Radio, Not Marconi!” Tesla Universe,  Nuts and Volts, February 2007, https://teslauniverse.com/nikola-tesla/articles/tesla-invented-radio-not-marconi

Hur, John. “History of Television.” Be Bussinessed, October 2016, https://bebusinessed.com/history/history-of-the-television/  

Nelson, Heming. “A History of Newspaper: Gutenburg’s Press Started A Revolution.” Washington Post, 11 February 1998, https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/1998/02/11/a-history-of-newspaper-gutenbergs-press-started-a-revolution/2e95875c-313e-4b5c-9807-8bcb031257ad/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.a73707bd5815

“September 11 Terror Attacks Fast Facts.” CNN, Cable News Network, 4 Sept. 2018, http://www.cnn.com/2013/07/27/us/september-11-anniversary-fast-facts/index.html.

Question 1

Part a: Nathaniel Cuevas 

Part b: Nathaniel Cuevas 

Part c: Pedro Almeyda

Question 2 

Part a: Alana Ortiz 

Question 3

Part a: Josue San Martin

Part b: Josue San Martin 

Question 4

Part a: Veronica Martinez

Part b: Veronica Martinez 

Part c: Veronica Martinez/Pedro Almeyda

overall, this is well done. the first two answers should have been edited, and its important to remember to focus on analysis using the readings and media. Be sure to check the rubrics for future team assignments which are accessible on the class site.

Alana Ortiz Group 5

 

In the New York times article “Why our memory fails us” authors Christopher F. Chabris and Daniel J. Simons use rhetoric in an effort to persuade the audience to believe what they are stating. The most obvious forms of rhetoric that stand out are Ethos, Pathos, and Logos. 

Ethos in rhetoric is defined as the amount of credibility an author has, which aids the author to convey their ideas to the reader. analyze rather than summarize. assume we know this already.  In this article, the Christopher F. Chabris and Daniel J. Simons demonstrated Ethos by including different sources that support their statements. This includes a study from a paper published by cognitive psychologists Henry L. Roediger III and K. Andrew DeSoto which shows how the confidence we have in our recollection of memories affects accuracy. The authors also provide the reader with an overview of a sequence of studies administered by Psychologist Sir Frederic Charles Barlett which demonstrates how memories get warped as they are recalled. good analysis and writing

Logos is portrayed when the authors state “We recall events easily and often, at least if they are related to us but only rarely do we find our memories contradicted by memories.” This statement is based on logic, because it is true that the events that we most easily recall are events that are important in our lives, such as a college graduation, or a wedding. While we remember the overall event pretty well, we might have some false memories of things that happened in said event. We believe that false memories are real memories because we have no way of proving that they are false. 

Pathos is probably the most prominent form of rhetoric found in this article, it is the way authors use writing to appeal to the readers emotions. The first sign of pathos is when the authors included Dr. Tysons reaction when asked where he got President Bush’s supposed quote, “I have explicit memory of those words being spoken by the president.” This appeals to pathos because it is a feeling that most everyone has experienced –being confident that you remember something that did not happen, or happened a different way than you remember. By adding anecdotal evidence of different people misremembering things such as Mr. Bush 9/11 north tower vision or Hillary Clinton catastrophizing an incident in Bosnia the reader is encouraged to think of a time when his/her memory failed.

The NYT top three “Reader Picks” comments are appropriately ranked because it is ranked by readers for readers. I think amount of recommendations is a good way of telling which comment readers liked the most. These three comments also depict the use of rhetoric, appealing to pathos, ethos and logos. The first comment appeals mostly to Ethos and Pathos because it was made by Neil deGrasse Tyson, which could be linked directly to the article so that establishes him as a credible source, and in the comment itself, Dr.Tyson links notes he created speaking of the incident he misremembered in full detail, that appeals to pathos. The second comment appeals to mostly Logos because he included quotes made by Former President Bush, and former First Lady Clinton and slightly Pathos because there was a tone of mockery. The last comment appeals to Pathos because it speaks about how everyone makes mistakes, and as long as people are open to acknowledging their mistakes, we should be more open to forgiving them. 

 

this is a great first assignment, although it is 75 words over the word count (okay for this one) which is probably due to summary and too much detail padding your good analysis.