Media project final:
As technology has become more prevalent in our society, people have increasingly wondered how it will affect their lives. One aspect of concern, is pictures. With cameras built in to all of our devices, we can take a picture of anything, at any time. The question is: how does this affect the moment? Does taking a picture take away from the experience? Psychologists Alixandra Barasch, Kristin Diehl, Jackie Silverman, and Gal Zauberman tested this question. They set out to answer how taking pictures would affect the memory of your multiple senses as well as how well you would remember images you did photograph, compared with those you did not. The participants for their study were workers randomly chosen from their company with the only regulation being that they were 18 years of age or older (meaning the conclusions are only applicable to adults). The participants were randomly split into two groups based on the time slot in which they signed up for the study. In the first component of the study, one group was allowed to explore an art museum with a camera that they could use at any time. The other group did not have a camera. Both of the groups listened to an audio recording of information about the art exhibits they were viewing. Afterwards, both of the groups were given the same test on the information they heard while walking through the exhibit in order to test how their different senses were tested. Some questions were about information spoken to them (auditory memory), while other required the participant to look at two similar pieces of art, and judge which one they had actually seen in the exhibit (visual memory). Three more studies were conducted of a similar nature. One involving the same variables as the first but in a virtual art gallery, one the same as the experiment prior, however, there was a third variable where a group could take pictures but was told they would be deleted, and one which was the same as before, however, the third variable was being allowed to take a picture whenever they ‘felt’ they would in real life. Each of these studies came to the same conclusion: that taking pictures improved visual memory while negatively affecting auditory memory. These four studies were then repeated for the second question. The results supported the researchers’ idea that people would better remember what they did photograph as opposed to what they didn’t. This leaves us in another predicament. Is the improvement in visual memory worth the detriment to auditory memory?
When it came to deciding what to include in my rewrite of the article, I decided to focus mainly on the scholarly article. The pop culture article included information based on how social media can be a variable, while this was never mentioned in the scholarly article. Since there was no factual evidence to support this claim, I did not include it in my summary. I did go more in depth about the multiple studies that were conducted as well as the fact that the researchers tested two hypotheses, not just one. I was also careful to answer the five critical questions for reading research. I explained the selection and assignment of the participants as well as how the variables were operationalized and the population the conclusion could be generalized too. I did not specifically state that causal claim was allowed due to this being a true experiment, but I did mention that both of the components necessary for this to be true were present. The news article did not answer most of these questions. It was never mentioned how the participants were assigned and then split into groups. I did include this in my rewrite as it also contributes to the critical question regarding causal claim. While writing/reading this article, I learned that (not always, this is a generalization for the article that I read) journalists may tend to take liberties. The point about the involvement of social media in the pop culture article seemed like a good way to hold the attention of the reader. It was, however, never mentioned in the scholarly article. I also learned that journalists must find a balance between making an article that is enjoyable and one that gives all the facts. During my rewrite, I found that I wanted to include the facts and details about the experiments. This, however, would not be the most interesting read for someone who simply looked at the article because the title sounded interesting.
Barasch, A., Diehl, K., Silverman, J., Zauberman, G. (2017, June 26). Photographic Memory: The Effects of Volitional Photo Taking on Memory for Visual and Auditory Aspects of an Experience. Retrieved May 2, 2017 from