Monthly Archives: April 2008

If you’re homophobic, check this before you shout “Fyah bun…”

I recently read a summary of findings of a US study on homophobic reactions that I found very interesting. It was part of a larger study carried out by the Psychology Department of the University of Georgia, Athens, published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology in August 1996. That’s a long time ago, but clearly the homophobes of the world haven’t yet got the message. The question asked by authors H. E. Adams, L. W. Wright Jnr. and B. A. Lohr was “Is homophobia associated with homosexual arousal?” Researchers provided subjects with porn material featuring hetero, lesbian and male homosexual sex. The subjects were straight males: either self-professed homophobic men, or men who didn’t consider themselves homophobic. The study also measured levels of aggression. While all the men were found to have a similar level of aggression, and to be aroused by hetero and lesbian sex, the study showed homophobic men were the only ones whose penile circumference grew when they watched men having sex with men. Pretty cool, eh? So this one’s for the homophobic guys: either you don’t know it, or can’t admit it, but gay sex turns you on … and just maybe you’ll think twice next time you get the urge to down-cry your gay brothers.

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Journalism 2.0 … multimedia stories

Our final assignment in the Journalism 2.0 course: Find 3 great multimedia packages and post to your blog about them. Describe what makes them effective and provide screenshots and links. Add a link to your blog post and upload it.

Cuban Revolution:

Opening photo and beginning of slide show on the 1959 Revolution

This is an interactive story, laid out newspaper-like and not as a package that’s navigable from one part to the other. However, I think it’s successful as a multimedia project because there’s a wealth of information in various formats, and all the components complement one another, with hardly any overlap. It was put together when Raul Castro was formally designated Cuban President in February this year. There’s a brief history of the Cuban Revolution and brother Fidel Castro’s role, and his presidency, timelines, audio, video, archive material, lots of great photos. Everything you wanted to know about the Cuban Revolution and even some stuff you didn’t.

Charlton Heston 1924-2008

• Charlton Heston wasn’t one of my favourites, but I thought the slide show and article commemorating his life was done well, and with judicious use of photographs and text. Very simple, with photos that told the story of his life, from his roles as Ben Hur and Moses, to his more recent role as champion of the gun lobby. I particularly liked the photo of him together with Harry Belafonte, James Baldwin and Marlon Brando in front of the Lincoln Memorial, in August 1963, for the Walk on Washington. (Is he looking a tich uncomfortable?)

The Joy Fit Club

At first this did not look like a particularly attractive package to me (too much colour and busy-ness for my taste), but the sheer amount of information on weight-loss and issues around the topic, and “true-life” videos on women’s stories, make it interesting as a multi-media story.