Final Essay, Tiffany Davis, Group 6

Tiffany –


Excellent essay. You really dug deep into the link between the technology and the movement. Bringing in fake news was also a good use of class concepts. Well written and interesting.


Yellow Vest Movement Huge Social Media Ran Protest

Low Angle Photo of Eiffel Tower

November 16, 2018, the French citizens began to protest because of a decision president Emmanuel Macon made to raise fuel tax.  Because of social media platforms, Priscillia Ludosky was able to get over 800,000 signatures by sharing a petition she launched in May. (Legrand) Little did she know; her petition would stir up a lot of fuel in France. Protesters wore yellow vests that are supposed to be in every automobile in case of road emergencies. In the initial protest, the Yellow Vest activists utilized social media such as Facebook to organize and publicize their cause. Pathos and logos were used to gain support in France and raise awareness in countries like the United States. The protest also aimed to expose government secrets regarding the plans to levy taxes on the middle and working class.

Groups were formed across Facebook. French citizens were using these groups to communicate; they shared news, perspectives, and ideas. (Anyone) Not all post where true, many were fake news stories. The average person doesn’t know how to spot fake news. Fake news uses rhetoric to make people believe in a false truth. A video was posted of president Emmanuel Macron, he was dancing alongside others at a formal event. (Pat) The video made people believe that while they were protesting for their rights, their president was out partying. That video was of the president at a gala event in October, a month before the protesting began. This fake news evoked anger in the French people.

The most common ways to receive news is by watching it locally, through online sources or on social media (the newer platform for news). I found out about this event through Instagram. One of my friends was constantly sharing videos and posts about the movement. I remember him sharing graphic pictures of police brutality and injured people in yellow vests. This is something people in the United States are seeking justice for and can relate too. Which makes it a lot more believable for people living there. After doing research, I was enlightened. Over 100 fake news articles were floating around Facebook and being shared by millions. (Azzaz) Many of these articles had to do with police brutality (27%), others included anti-establishment (28%), fabricated support (19%), Censorship (14%), Migration (10%) and others. These false stories altered the movement.  Fake news rallied up attention and misled protesters. The information caused people to become restless.

These fake stories evoke emotion (pathos) and claimed to use real facts (logos) to make people believe what they are saying. People don’t realize celebrity news isn’t the only news that could be false. People don’t remember authors use rhetoric to persuade their reader. These articles were getting millions of views and misleading millions of people because people don’t research what they are reading.

Pathos is used by protesters as they expose the tax rise worldwide. People were able to post video and images of intense protesting. Which allowed people in other countries to think they were being updated and aware but most likely misinformed. Some assumed the worst about the country’s situation and still do. This is real life, people are risking their freedom for change while others make more chaos from the cell phone screens.

Logos is an example of facts such as the unemployment rate at about 10% or the president being a formers banker. Knowing this information make people think about the motives of the president.  Raising taxes doesn’t seem like a good idea to the French. It seemed like a scheme to get people with power even more money.

Man Using Camera Between Crowd

This event affected all of France. The working class, pioneers and small business owners were all out to protest. People were not only protesting about fuel tax but on a variety of personal issues, they wanted to see change. Since the movement had no leader, it was disorganized. Protesters vandalized banks, monuments, and put bullets through many walls.  The economy had fallen within a few months. It was too chaotic for visitors. Stores lost money since it was easier and safer for consumers in France to buy online, like Amazon. No one seemed to be doing much Christmas shopping around town. People wanted justice not presents. The only presents they were expecting would have to come from the president himself.

A message can be perceived differently by whoever receives it. As Marshall McLuhan said, “the medium is the message”. In this case, the medium is Social Media. A platform people use to express themselves. He believed that the medium is more important to the message. Facebook became a hotspot for targeting a large audience of people looking for information on the yellow vest movement. McLuhan seemed to believe that the written word followed by visuals would become a lot more powerful. Which is still true. Anyone with a social media can post about their day, add a picture, and that post can affect another person’s day.

The information was created by a bunch of different people online. The freedom of information was not held back. Not everything posted was fake news. Many people were posting lives on Facebooks and Instagram showing us firsthand what was happening from our fingertips. (Battaglini) People in other countries got a taste of what it was like to protest alongside everyone else. Information is being given to us in the perspective of the French people. They shared to build awareness. In some countries, governments censor certain sites which restrict them from sharing information online. Lucky the French were never censoring. They freely posted about the revolution because they could.

Without technology, it would be hard to have gotten so many people together. The protesters had a voice and they weren’t scared to use it especially online and on the streets. Video and pictures shared online help build up hype which made this movement so strong.

Works Cited

Battaglini, and Marco. “Public Protests and Policy Making *.” OUP Academic, Narnia, 13 Nov. 2016,

Christophe, Foucault Jean. “Gilet Jaune Officiel.” Facebook,

“Pbt Pat.” Pbt Pat – Et Pendant Que La France Va Mal,

Azzaz. “Pdf.” YELLOW VESTS FLOODED BY FAKE NEWS, 2019, doi:10.21625/resourceedings.v1i2.335.s78.

“La Pétition De Priscillia Sur Le Prix Du Carburant …” Le Parisien,


Maduro and Guaido: An Analysis

Laura –
Very good job. Rhetorical analysis was strong, good use of class concepts. Your media didn’t show up in the email. Please resend, and maybe send images or links to media separately just in case.

By: Laura Higuera



         Twenty years ago, Venezuela was a thriving and wealthy democracy. Today, Venezuela is a country in crisis. On January 23, 2019, Juan Guaido, leader of the opposition in Venezuela, proclaimed himself interim president. Guaido used logos as his main mode of rhetoric. The current president, Nicolas Maduro, refused to surrender power. In his response to the announcement, Maduro utilized pathos to persuade his audience. An analysis of forms of rhetoric and critical perspective provide insight into how we know what we know about the crisis in Venezuela. 

         In the first portion of his speech, Guaido appealed to the idea of a democratic government. He appeals to logic by saying, “If we give up now, it would all have been in vain. But if, on the contrary, we unite and occupy the streets, we will regain our freedom and all the Venezuelan effort would have been worth it” (Guaido 4:48). He then states his intentions: “We will insist until we reach our freedom. Until Venezuela’s prosperity is restored” (Guaido 5:42). He is using logos when he speaks because he is stating facts. There is currently no freedom in Venezuela- the people live in fear of the government. He explains, “Leaders in (Maduro’s) government have declared forgiveness and the humanitarian aid unconstitutional.(Guaido 9:00) There is no way international aid can be “unconstitutional”.

         He appeals to the military, stating that since there is so much support for the opposition, it is only logical that they support him, too. (Guaido 12:00) He goes on to say, “We count with the support of the international community. They do not support the usurper”, once again, using logos. He is saying it is only obvious for the military to support his cause since the international community is already in support of his interim presidency. He continues, “There are things that cannot be bought: respect, family, the admiration of our people, honor, and unity” (Guaido 13:15).

   “No one’s arm will be twisted here. We are stretching out our arms. Everyone is disappointed with what Chavez and his clan did- becoming rich at our country’s expense. And we are waiting for the water and bread to come back our table” (Guaido 13:20-13:45). Here, he confronts Maduro’s government with hard and very real facts. There is scarcity of food and water in the nation. He concludes, “Today, January 23, 2019, in my condition as president of the National Assembly, invoking the articles of the constitution; I swear in as the President in charge of Venezuela” (Guaido 18:10-19:00)   

         In terms of critical perspective, Guaido is certainly challenging the norms. He is standing up to the totalitarian government of Maduro by standing for democracy. Guaido is definitely expanding the bounds of debate, calling on the country to fight for liberty. He is also promising a betterment of society under his interim presidency. He wants the best for Venezuela, not looking to hoard power but setting himself up temporarily to restore democracy to the country. .

         “Welcome to Miraflores, the presidential palace- and your house, welcome!” Maduro stated, already hinting of pathos (Maduro 4:00). He is using the house as if it were a home belonging to all Venezuelans- using the home rhetoric to establish familiarity.
He attempts to create an “anti-imperialism” spirit by saying that the United States has tried to get Venezuela’s petroleum since the twentieth century (Maduro 8:30-8:45) He demonizes America as an imperialist power. This is apparently working as there are signs in the crowd that say, “Yankees Go Home”. He has manipulated his people so that they are sure America is trying to invade Venezuela. 

He states, “Here no one gives up, here we go to the victory of life, peace and democracy” (Maduro 13:59). It is ironic that he believes Venezuela is still a functioning democracy when the country has no power, hospitals, or food and the country is in deep debt (Correspondent).

Moreover, he states, “Via Twitter, vice-president Mike Pence ordered the naming of an extraconstitutional president” (Maduro 18:00). That is an outright lie; Mike Pence does not have the power to appoint Venezuela’s president. Maduro is now manipulating events. Using pathos to move people in his favor, he ignites national fervor. He unites people with his hatred of America, once again manipulating their emotions when it comes to the “imperialist” country. “Do you want a puppet president sent from Washington?” Maduro asks (Maduro 24:03). He then appeals to pathos, this time with religion. He says, “And I ask God, the Almighty, to help us overcome this trial” (Maduro 33:00). He then says, “Do not cling to the Gringo government. Gringos do not have friends and are loyal to no one” (Maduro 33:30). This is absurd because the United States has allies all around the world. Maduro continues to manipulate with pathos by now overtly lying to his people. The lies continue as he says that the United States wants the Venezuelan petroleum, natural gas, and gold. But he says they cannot have it, for those treasures belong to the people (Maduro 34:00) Everyone knows Venezuelans are having a hard time finding the basic necessities of food, water, and shelter. Some people have even been caught on video eating food from garbage trucks. (Ramos)

“You elected me,” says Maduro “On the fourteenth of May in 2013. And you re-elected me democratically, constitutionally on May 2018. All we have, we have earned by the vote of the people” (Maduro 34:30-36:35). This is another lie as many countries, including the United States, view the elections last May were fraudulent (Translated). As Scott Neuman writes for NPR, “Those opposed to Maduro have long maintained that the election is fraudulent, not least because the opposition’s most popular leaders — the ones with the best chance of unseating the president — were barred from running” (Neuman).

         Analyzing Maduro’s speech with critical perspective, one can see it is one-sided. He questions the norm that America is good- he insists the United States is evil. The bounds of debate do not expand, as he continues to demonize America, instead of having an open and candid discussion about the state of the country. Lastly, his speech is not for the betterment of society- Venezuela is still in crisis after the speech. 

         In conclusion, how we know what we know about the crisis in Venezuela depends on our source. Media plays an important role in how we understand the world around us. By analyzing both Maduro’s speech and Guaido’s speech, one can obtain a clearer image. Through rhetorical analysis and critical perspective, we can see that Guaido uses mostly logos as his form of rhetoric. On the other hand. Maduro uses mostly pathos. 

Works Cited

Correspondent, IFLR. “QUICK POLL: Venezuela’s Sovereign Debt.” International Financial Law Review, Feb. 2019, p. N.PAG. EBSCOhost,

Guaido, Juan. “Juan Guaidó Se Proclama Presidente Interino De Venezuela.” YouTube, CNN En Español, 23 Jan. 2019,

Maduro, Nicolas. “Discurso Completo De Nicolás Maduro Este 23 De Enero De 2019 Desde Miraflores.” YouTube, Luigino Bracci Roa – Situación En Venezuela, 23 Jan. 2019,

Ramos, Jorge. “Venezolanos Comiendo De La Basura: El Video Que Incomodó a Maduro.” Univision, 26 Feb. 2019,

Translated by ContentEngine, L. L. C. “Juan Guaidó was Sworn in as President in Charge of Venezuela.” CE Noticias Financieras, Jan 23, 2019. ProQuest

Final Essay

Beatriz Otero

George Pearson

IDS 3309

April 23, 2019

Venezuela’s crisis has brought the country to the forefront of international headlines. Political forces, in support or in opposition, have struggled to control the narrative of what is going on in the nation. Nicolas Maduro, official Venezuela president, leans on traditional media like television and radio to reach his followers. On the other hand, Guaido relies in Social Media to challenge the government as well as to gain supporters. 

Restrictions, favoritism and intimidation have long been determining factors in the traditional media landscape, and Venezuelans by and large now turn to social media to get a sense of what is truly happening in their embattled country. (Puglie, Frederic. “Social Media, Comedy Replace News as Maduro’s Grip on Media Blacks out Turmoil in Venezuela.” The Washington Times, The Washington Times, 4 Mar. 2019,

On February 2019, a truck that was part of a humanitarian aid convoy attempted to cross the border between Colombia and Venezuela. The truck was burned. Despite press coverage, the news took a different direction at the time it was aired to the Venezuelan Public. Using a photograph that was taken of volunteers trying to extinguish the flames on the humanitarian aid truck, state run media outlets reported that people were spraying gasoline instead of water. “They manipulate using a photo I took,” Ms. Salcedo Flores told The Washington Times. “I feel very powerless that the Venezuelan authorities want to squash the truth with all their might.” (Puglie, Frederic. “Social Media, Comedy Replace News as Maduro’s Grip on Media Blacks out Turmoil in Venezuela.” The Washington Times, The Washington Times, 4 Mar. 2019,

Madelin Garcias, a Venezuelan reporter for the governmental television network Telesur, concluded with an analysis that the truck was carrying arms for opposition instigators. This channel is what Maduro sees as an alternative to international news channels. It also gets funding from leftist governments in Cuba, Nicaragua, Uruguay and Bolivia. 

Manipulating what is really happening in Venezuela, has become Maduro’s most powerful weapon. Maduro relies a great deal on pathos to invoke sympathy. With this, he spreads misleading information to avoid using logic or trustworthy facts. This has been his primary way to manipulate and engage people. Aristoteles stated, “To understand the emotions- that is, to name and describe them, to know their causes and the way in which they are excited.” (Communicate with Confidence: How to Say It Right the First Time and Every Time” Originally published: July 1, 1994 Author:Dianna Booher). Maduro’s ability to tap into Venezuelans and the rest of the world has evoke feelings and connectedness to get the motivation to act onto what he and his government needs to remain in power.  

 Socio-political polarization permeates in Venezuela media, and while Maduro and his followers keep their efforts to hide the reality of Venezuela, Juan Guaido fights for letting the world know the reality of his country. The opposition uses mainly Social Media as the medium to challenge the government. Therefore, when Guaido declared himself the interim president of Venezuela, the response from Maduro’s government was to shut down the internet in the country. (“Why Venezuela’s Internet Shuts down Every Time Juan Guaido Speaks | CBC Radio.” CBCnews, CBC/Radio Canada, 30 Mar. 2019, an attempt to stifle those who oppose his government, he disconnected access to Google, Instagram, Twitter, Wikipedia, etc. His purpose was to censor the voice of Venezuelans and silence critics around the globe. 

 The country’s ruling elite has relied extensively on private media to organize its efforts to overthrow Maduro. Given that various policies of the Maduro’s government restrict the free circulation of information in traditional media, Social Media has become the number one alternative for news consumption nowadays among Venezuelans. 

According to a study conducted by the human rights advocacy organization Espacio Publico, traditional media in Venezuela have faced censorship and retaliation after publishing news that can be interpreted as being critical for the government. Carlos Correa, the director of the organization, said: “Some news no longer fits in the conventional networks of information (…) The news of looting at local food vendors gains more coverage in networks like Twitter and Facebook; in traditional media, such news is unimaginable,. (“Venezuelan Politics and Human Rights.” Venezuelan Politics and Human Rights,

In addition, Social Media plays a prominent role in drawing large crowds, given that the government controls almost all of the traditional broadcast and print media. Guaido is said to have used Instagram to mobilize support for one of biggest rallies that took place on January in Caracas. (McKay, Hollie. “From Secret Meetings to Social Media to Military Rumblings: How Venezuelan Protests Came to Life.” Fox News, FOX News Network, 24 Jan. 2019,

However, Maduro loyalist are active in this platforms as well. Internet is also considered a battlefield of interest by the government. Maduro and his people have used spy software to surveil the opposition. (Threats, Lies and Censorship: Media in Venezuela. International Media Support, Open Society Foundations and Article 19. 2016, Threats, Lies and Censorship: Media in

 Television, which is by far the most important media platform on a national level is owned by the government. Channels are dedicated to news programs, political debates and opinions that reaches 95 percent of Venezuelans households. Since 2012, several publications have been made from the government showing emails, calls and private conversations that were recorded in the house of opposition leaders. Even though the privacy of the communications is listed in the constitution, this is considered by the government as a “patriotic hacking”. (Puyosa, Iria. “Political Control on the Internet in the Context of a Hybrid Regime. Venezuela 2007-2015.” Teknokultura, 2015,

 Newspapers are also controlled by Maduro. He govern the company that provides the press organizations with all basic material for the graphic industry. That being said, the state provides material to state-run newspapers, while private papers have been constrained to limit their circulation. 

Works Cited

Puglie, Frederic. “Social Media, Comedy Replace News as Maduro’s Grip on Media Blacks out Turmoil in Venezuela.”The Washington Times, The Washington Times, 4 Mar. 2019,

Puglie, Frederic. “Social Media, Comedy Replace News as Maduro’s Grip on Media Blacks out Turmoil in Venezuela.” The Washington Times, The Washington Times, 4 Mar. 2019,

Communicate with Confidence: How to Say It Right the First Time and Every Time” Originally published: July 1, 1994 Author:Dianna Booher

“Why Venezuela’s Internet Shuts down Every Time Juan Guaido Speaks | CBC Radio.” CBCnews, CBC/Radio Canada, 30 Mar. 2019,

“Venezuelan Politics and Human Rights.” Venezuelan Politics and Human Rights,

McKay, Hollie. “From Secret Meetings to Social Media to Military Rumblings: How Venezuelan Protests Came to Life.” Fox News, FOX News Network, 24 Jan. 2019,

Threats, Lies and Censorship: Media in Venezuela. International Media Support, Open Society Foundations and Article 19. 2016, Threats, Lies and Censorship: Media in

Puyosa, Iria. “Political Control on the Internet in the Context of a Hybrid Regime. Venezuela 2007-2015.” Teknokultura, 2015,

Daniela Sanchez – Final Essay – Team 6

Daniella –

Very good essay. Interesting take on the dynamics of members of the anti-vaccine movement and the role social media plays. Not sure if this is the final essay, as there is no media.  


Measles, Mommy Bloggers, & the MMR Vaccine

During the measles outbreak that occurred in New York throughout December 2018, online anti-vaccination bloggers incited conversation on the MMR vaccine’s connection with developing autism. These bloggers are using their role on social media to employ the rhetorical tactics of logos, pathos, and ethos to persuade their audience against vaccination by manipulating proof that disproves their claim.

The main trending source for anti-vaccination bloggers are new mothers who have just given birth. These women have blindly followed the anti-vaccination movement because in their eyes, they are doing the best they can for their children. This movement has rapidly spread through this community due to the increasing accessibility to social media. These new mothers are exposed to social media groups, predominantly on Facebook, where other concerned parents warn them of the supposed dangers of the MMR vaccine. The origins of this mentality are attributed to a fraudulent 1998 research article linking the MMR vaccines to autism, publicized by The Lancet and retracted in 2010. (Steiner 61) Although retracted, this was the foundation for “mommy bloggers” to emerge and create anti-vaccination Facebook groups and communities. These women have successfully brainwashed their audience into the mentality that the MMR vaccine poses a threat to their children’s health, besides the overwhelming amount of information refuting this claim. However, this fraudulent article was only the beginning of studies and analysis of theories trying to connect MMR to autism used by mommy bloggers in an attempt to use logos.

The Generation Rescue organization is “the leading national organization that provides hope, information and immediate treatment assistance to families affected by autism spectrum disorders.”  (“Who We Are.”) This organization posted an article link to their website, stating that this new scientific review still explores the bounds of the autism-vaccine debate through published theories. “Vaccines and Autism: A New Scientific Review.” Jenna McCarthy, director for Generation Rescue and spokesperson for the anti-vaccination group, is one of the many mothers holding on to claims such as these to try to continue proving the theory of MMR causing autism. However, in an article posted by CBS News, University of Pennsylvania’s Dr. Brian Strom, does not find this article remarkable or haven proven anything. Dr. Storm emphasized that this scientific review is just that: a review of scientific theories, therefore “any speculation about an explanation for a (non-existing) relationship is irrelevant.” (Attkisson) Although this review has been rejected by a medical professional, mommy bloggers are still using this and other weak evidence to logically persuade their readers to the conclusion that the MMR vaccine causes autism, or at the very least that it has not been proven it doesn’t.

Anti-vaccination mommy vloggers also appeal to their audience’s pathos through telling their own or other’s stories of children with autism. However, recently many of these women have begun to appeal to women’s trust of their “motherly instincts” and distrust of the medical establishment. According to Valenti’s Medium article, “There is ample evidence published in scientific journals that women are more likely than men to be disbelieved or not taken seriously when they report chronic pain or fatigue, among other symptoms, and to have their concerns written off as ‘all in their head.’” Situations like these feed to the trusting only motherly intuitions and doing their own research online without fact checking instead of believing credible health professionals. This problem has become so vast that when McCarthy appeared on Oprah Winfrey’s show to talk about the proof for her beliefs, she replied “My science is Evan. He’s at home. That’s my science.” (Valenti) With McCarthy being such an established anti-vaccine leader, opinions like these truly influence her followers into believing that they are following the right path when their emotions are being manipulated into feeling distrust towards others. Furthermore, mommy vloggers have unknowingly established their credibility through their innate appeal to celebrity and refusal of loneliness. These women create communities in which their opinions will be supported and heard, gathering more support while growing their public. In efforts to do this, they combat the loneliness they may feel as a new mother. In McCarthy’s situation, she is on the board of directors for an organization helping those affected by autism, boosting her credibility as a role model to follow for this movement.

Additionally, mommy bloggers conceal information to themselves and their followers by controlling the flow of information to them. Any time they get attacked for their ideas, they refute it and stand their ground to maintain their façade the MMR vaccine causing autism. However, this secrecy can hurt at-risk population and children of contracting the possibly fatal Measles disease. Children benefit from other’s immunity in the idea of herd immunity where children who can not get vaccinated due to a health risk must rely on this idea dependent on everyone around them being vaccinated. (Steiner 66) However, as a society we must also change how these people are approached to avoid them shutting off logical explanations for their misinformed ideals. According to “Fear, Numbers, and Measles,” the author relates the parent’s fear of vaccines to their personal story, recounting how they would’ve liked the situation to have occurred and therefore offering a solution to changing these perspectives. Author, Alison Turnbull, delineates three steps that could be useful to shift this ideal. First, acknowledging that the fear is real even if the danger is not. Using numbers to help the person gain perspective. Finally, help make low levels of risk an acceptable part of life. (Turnbull) This tactic to the situation brings awareness to the lack of proper approach from health officials and the media. “Health officials should effectively communicate vaccine safety and risk in this context.” (Holton) To further solve this anti-vaccination problem as a society we must investigate, “Who or what was viewed as responsible for the potential public health impacts of this study? To whom was responsibility attributed? What does this attribution say about journalism practice and risk communication?” (Holton) It’s not just the measles we need to stop from spreading, it’s misinformation.



Works Cited

Attkisson, Sharyl. “Vaccines and Autism: a New Scientific Review.” CBS News, CBS          Interactive, 1 Apr. 2011,

Holton, Avery, et al. “The Blame Frame: Media Attribution of Culpability About the MMR–Autism Vaccination Scare.” Health Communication, vol. 27, no. 7, Oct. 2012, pp. 690–701. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1080/10410236.2011.633158.

Steiner, Linda, and Carolyn Bronstein. “Leave a Comment: Mommyblogs and the Everyday Struggle to Reclaim Parenthood.” Feminist Media Studies, vol. 17, no. 1, Feb. 2017, pp. 59–76. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1080/14680777.2017.1261840.

Turnbull, AlisonE. “Fear, Numbers, and Measles.” Health Communication, vol. 26, no. 8, Dec. 2011, pp. 775–776. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1080/10410236.2011.616629.

“Vaccines and Autism: A New Scientific Review.” Generation Rescue | Jenny McCarthy’s Autism Organization, 25 Apr. 2011,

Valenti, Jessica, and Jessica Valenti. “Why Women Lead the Anti-Vaxx Movement.” Medium, Medium, 20 Feb. 2019,

“Who We Are.” Generation Rescue | Jenny McCarthy’s Autism Organization,

Final Essay

Katherine –


Good job. Well written, solid analysis. Some of your assertions were a bit too sweeping, but good use of class concepts.


Sent the final essay to you through your email

Victoria Martinez, 48 hours Blackout Essay, IDS 3309, Team 6

Victoria –

Excellent piece. Very thoughtful analysis of Deresiewicz and your experience. Overall, your writing is good. A final edit would be useful. Omit needless words.


In the article “The End of Solitude” by William Deresiewicz, he explains how solitude has disappeared in our society. He stresses this has happened due to the want of being desire to be connected or known. Technology and modernism of our society, play a major role in the to e nonexistence of solitude.

Deresiewicz, says technology is “taking away our privacy”, which is true. We are constantly relying on what technology has to offer to make us feel as if we are connected with everything, rather than finding solitude without having technology. Our lives revolve around everyone else’s life, (good) like Deresiewicz stated, “We live exclusively in relation to others and what disappears from our lives is solitude.” His example of the teenage girl sending 3,000 text messages within a one-month period, is a prime example of how we do not put time into solitude. It has become a thing in this day in age known as a cultural norm. 

In the article, Deresiewicz talks about the history of solitude. He says it was used for religious practice in order to find and hear God, but he said solitude was not accomplished until the Romantic Period, where writers like Rousseau and Thoreau and more, find it to be a physical necessity. Solitude was desired, but that has all changed, due to the developments in technology that have been made, such as the television. Childhood changed, Deresiewicz said. Nowadays not very many children play outside. They use the T.V. as there resource of connection, rather than finding solitude in simply just being alone without T.V. As a result of the T.V., internet arrived.

The internet has made solitude impossible for many. Our The theme of our age, postmodernism, is the desire to be recognized. With the internet that is possible. It is a constant stream of contact, which keeps us “wired in to the electronic hive” as Deresiewicz has quoted, and disconnected from solitude. With the internet comes a variety of outlets that we use, such as, Instagram Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and much more. There is always a concern of how many likes we get on a picture on Instagram or how many friends we have on snapchat. Before all these distractions, solitude was a norm. It was easy to be alone but not lonely. Now, that is unheard of.

When I did the 48 hours of no apps, T.V., video games, etc, I found myself more alone than ever. It was really like being disconnected from the world. I am so used to the constant urge to check my phone for Instagram feed or simply just watch Netflix, but without all of that, sadness and loneliness crept up on me. Not being connected, made solitude isolation. Being alone was being lonely. I definitely can relate to what Deresiewicz said that now solitude is just loneliness and boredom to us, because that is what came upon me. I found myself trying to do other activities, such as, exercising or taking people’s shifts at work, to avoid being by myself.  Solitude was harder to do than I thought.

Technology is without a doubt, a necessary intrusion of our solitude. My experience is just one example that solitude is being lonely and I need news in order to feel apart of life. Having the internet and other ways to involve myself with the world, is what makes me feel connected. That is how many of us live our lives and that is what our generation has made our therapy.

Fake News, Team Assignment, Group 6

Team 6: Very good piece. Reflection was particularly illuminating. Spelling and grammar lessened your ethos. Also, did you have a version with media? If so, please let me know. Otherwise, there is a deduction of 9 points.


Is Melania leaving Donald Trump because of Russian Mistress?

Donald Trump is back again with another outrageous tweet but not about politics. The tweet was toward some unknown woman. The White House is probably in scandal mode right now, as the news of President Trump’s marriage coming to an end reached media news outlets.

On March 31st, 2019, Melania Trump announced her divorce with the President. She tells sources “After a while of negotiating, me and Donald have decided to have a divorce, we have different views and opinions and our marriage is falling apart because of it.” Some speculation behind the divorce was because of a tweet Donald Trump had accidently accidentally posted. The tweet read “I had a great time last night, when can I see you again?” The tweet was quickly deleted, but thousands of his followers saw what he posted. Question is, who was the tweet about? Many of his followers believe he had an affair with a women woman in Russia. They assume, when he met with Putin last year that is when he began having an affair with his unknown mistress. Where is Trump during all of this media chaos? He has not been seen in awhile but sources say he has gone to his vacation home in West Palm Beach,  Florida.

It looks like Melania’s willingness to pull out all the stops has come to an end. After months of headlines about Trump’s infidelities and her intent to keep the intents of keeping it quiet, Melania is finally speaking out about her marriage and how it is falling apart. She has defended her husband in the past, as when she dismissed comments on the Access Hollywood tape as “body talk”.

“She is devastated, she never thought her marriage would be such a spectacle”, says an insider.

Melania is expected to be moving out of the White House this year. According to a statement, Melania will be taking custody of the kids and half of the things they own. We should have seen this coming, there have been multiple occasions where Melania has push pushed Trump’s hand away to avoid holding it in a public setting. Trump and Melania’s marriage has been full of awful accusations. The First Lady lady must have been devastated when she heard talk about Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal; the names of the women the US President apparently had affairs with while being with the first lady. This is just a repeat story since Trump’s past two marriages ended for the same reason.

Trump has had two previous marriages and now his third is about to end. This is no surprise. Trump has a history of infidelity and sexual misconduct. His disrespect and disloyalty has been shown in more than one opportunity throughout the years. Starting with his first marriage with Ivana Zelnickova, the mother of three of his children, Donald Trump’s marriages end because his constant love affairs. He finally showed the world that his disloyalties were more than nasty rumors. This time, the whole world could witness that his is not just a dishonor as president, but a disgrace as human being.     


We chose to write a story on Trump because everyone has it out for him. A hand full of people will believe any negative thing said about Trump. People perceive Melania’s and his relationship as unhealthy, but in reality we don’t know anything that happens behind closed doors. We are trying to target a teenage, Trump-hating, or uneducated audience to read our story. Our hook is the headline, the headline is what attracts people to most articles. The audience’s attention was grabbed by the headline and held because we used twitter and “inside sources” to make ourselves sound believable. We make it sound like we might have spoken to close friends, family or people with real facts. We certainly try to persuade the audience using ethos, we build credibility by providing sources like tweets and quotes from ”insiders” to make the audience believe what we are saying to be true. We also use pathos by bringing up Trump’s past with previous relationships and affairs making people feel sympathetic for the first lady. Lastly, we used logos by digging into his past and recognizing the patterns of failed marriages due to affairs, which is why we feel his marriage is crashing once again in our fake news story.



Katherine Yi –  Information Provider

Victoria Martinez – Information Provider, Editor

Laura M. Higuera Vargas – Information Provider

Tiffany Davis –  Information Provider, Editor

Betty Otero – Information Provider

Daniela Sanchez –  Information Provider