Tuesday, October 1, 2013
US advertisers spent $235.6 billion in 2009
80% of the countries in the world have GDP less than that!
Today most advertisers, big brands and media target their focus to talk and communicate with Millennials and pop culture (teenagers to early 30s). There is nothing wrong with that. What’s wrong is the way mainstream media contributes to the distortion of women seeking positions of power and influence without embodying any sexual appearances to achieve their desired success .
What you see in broadcast TV today is that most female characters are in their 20s and 30s. However, the reality is far from that. Women in their teens, 20’s and 30’s are 39% of the American population, yet are 71% of women on TV. Women in 40s and older are 47% of the population, yet are only 26% of women on TV. Do you know what does that mean? It’s like telling women who reaches the age 39-40 that they need to go away! It means that there is something fundamentally wrong with the media; something that makes it so hard and complicated for women to attain leadership positions and for the average woman or girl to feel powerful herself.
Although I’m a big fan of Media and Hollywood movies, I have to admit that Hollywood plays a big role in this misrepresentation to reality about women and thus skews and twists people’s perceptions.
When you look at Madonna, Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lopez, the Kardashians and more (trust me, the list never ends) as powerful, it’s all because of the hyper sexuality- their physical features and extreme appearances, not of who they really are. If you go a little with your memory to those powerful characters in Hollywood like Lara Croft (Angelina Jolie), Catwoman (Hally Berry), Elektra (Jennifer Garner) or the invisible woman (Jessica Alba), their role was nothing more than the powerful ‘fuck toy’. Even if they appear as being tough and do things on their own terms, they were all still very much objectified and exist for the male viewer.
There are many powerful women out there that few- if none- know they exist. Do you know that the CEOs of Pepsico, Xerox or Avon are all women? Of course few will know or remember their names; maybe because they forgot to show some skin and sexual appearances of themselves- that’s the key to fame, who cares what they do, right!
Lots of skin, sweats and barely dressed bodies! Yes, today, it’s the sex that sells most, not the story. We all see it every single day, in the internet, in commercials, in TV shows or billboards. Creepy, to say the least! The way media portrays women makes their lives more complicated. Many women are obsessed with their looks than their achievements. Because they know no matter how smart they are, the media will not recognize them if they don't look 'sexy'.
This research gives a much clearer idea to what I’m trying to talk about:
US women spend $12,000 to $15,000 a year on beauty products and salon services. The number of cosmetic surgical procedures performed on youth under age 19 more than tripled from 1997 to 2007. The average face lift costs $11,429. This amount of money is enough to pay for:
- 5 years at a community college
- 2 years at a state university
- 1 year at the University of California
As a citizen of the globe, who is trying to seek and build a core identity for myself through who I am as a person- not how I look, I find the hyper-sexuality that is happening to be toxic, disturbing and it makes me very uncomfortable. Not because I think that the world should be more ‘traditional’ or that sexuality is something that should be concealed and never brought up to community, NO! It makes me uncomfortable because it cheapens and brings down the genuine meaning of sexuality, which is something beautiful, personal, romantic, powerful and important to the people involved and it upsets me to see it being used in this cheap way by media!
Women’s Leadership, Leadership Development And Media Advocacy
Gender Representation In The Media, And Sexualization
Media Consumption, Media Literacy And Media Advocacy
Monday, May 20, 2013
"I’ve made a lot of hours of television over the years, but I think I’m proudest of Sunday’s Libya episode. I believe it is the best piece of work I’ve ever been part of." - Anthony Bourdain
"When you stood in Gaddafi’s body, any dream can be true"! Akram said to Anthony Bourdain, showing a real positive and great attitude coming from a real free Libyan.
Anthony Burdain is an American chef, author and television personality, who hosts a CNN show called Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown. The latest episode of Anthony’s show was about Libya's post revolutionary cuisine and life. Anthony's episode brought bittersweet tears over my face. He visited almost every place I love in Tripoli. His visit to “Barakoda” restaurant reminded me of the lovely lunch meeting I had with Michel Cousins and Sami Zaptia (Co-founders of Libya Herald newspaper), and the ambassador of Thailand. His delicious "Sfinz" breakfast in Fashloom took me to my nearby neighborhood “Ben Ashour”.
His trip to Libya exposed the worst and the craziest sides as well as some the greatest and best sides of Libya and Libyans. He looked at the country through personal stories of simple Libyans.
Libya, once home to the Greeks, Romans, Ottomans, and even the famous pirate Barbarossa, is today forming a new public space as a result of the exposure of Libyan youth to media and technology.
Although he didn't give much focus on the Libyan cuisine and how Libyans are always proud of their heritage, food and traditions, he showed that Libya’s younger generations desire to adopt new behaviors, modern and more westernized way of life to feel their freedom when it comes to food. Libyans want to have a revolutionary fast food, something like “Uncle Kin tacky”, a disconcerted rip-off of Kentucky Fried Chicken! Despite the fact that fast food idea is facing an increasing resistance in the United States, due to the rampant obesity it causes in the American society, Libyans look at fast food as a great fruit of Western style democracy. American fast food chains were not permitted in Libya under Gaddafi’s four decades of dictatorship, but all that’s changed since his ouster in 2011.
Before the Arab Spring hit Libya, this county was badly associated with a madman named Gaddafi and his coldblooded crimes nationally and internationally. In the past four decades, Gaddafi’s forging friendship with the world was a doormat on which he wiped off the blood of his inhuman crimes. Today, when you visit Libya, you will see that Gaddafi’s face doesn’t worth more than a doormat on which Libyans and tourists can come and clean their shoes on.
Although Libyans are still far from attaining all that they are aiming for, the challenges to face, and the rowdy militias to tame, Anthony showed that there is still joy everywhere. He showed the heart of Libya: Lanterns flying all over Martyr Square, local band playing Zukra music on Mawlid day (The birthday of Prophet Mohamed), people smiling with hope and excitement regardless of the challenges ahead of Libya and Libyans.
Each Libyan has his own vision of a prosperous Libya. However, even the simplest vision, like having fast food stops in Libya, may not come true if our hearts are not united for the love of Libya. When we devote ourselves to work, develop ourselves and fight together the enemies who are trying to drag Libya into the darkness, that’s when we will see the Libya we've always dreamed of and say Gaddafi really died.
|Anthony Bourdain meeting Libyan boy scouts in Libya's Roman ruins|
|Anthony Bourdain at "Chicken Kin Tacky" ( Libya's KFC) in Tripoli, Libya|
|Libyan breakfast delicacy of "sfinz"|
|Only in my beloved Libya!|
Long Live Free Libya
Written by: Nafissa Assed
نفيسة عبد السلام محمد عثمان الصيد
Facebook Page: Fissa's Free Libyan Voice
Friday, April 19, 2013
He is from X country! He is from Y religion! And His skin is XY color! Now let’s go cook some news with that!!
Today, that is what is being given as “NEWS”!
Unfortunately, the media is being very reckless in putting out a lot of unsubstantiated information that doesn't help but unveil the stupidity of those promoting it.
As Malcom X once said:
“The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses.”
Earlier this morning, the uncle of the two suspects of Boston Marathon bombings talked to the media, genuinely expressing his condolence and sorrow for what happened. All what the reporters asked and were interested to know is what he thinks about America, where they're from and what religion they follow! (I bet everyone can tell the direction that line was taking). Much worse, some TV new channels even took the man’s words and twisted them into false meanings (Making it seem that America corrupted his Nephews, not Chechnya, which is “OBVIOUSLY” not what he meant!!)
Sadly, some of the comments I read in social media (either Twitter or Facebook) are so stupid that I want to punch myself in the face just for being a human walking in this planet. Some people are so dumb that If Obama would say his real name is “Stewie Griffin” they would all believe it.
Does anyone see that this is insanely poor reflection of the Islam, just as WBC is a poor reflection of the Christianity??! Radicalized Islam is the same as radicalized catholic and radicalized Judaism or any other faith!
The moment I watched the news about Boston Marathon bombing, I knew somehow, someway they would link it with Arabs, if not then Islam. I knew this before there was an Arab- Muslim- Saudi suspect (looks like Arab phobia has been around years longer than Islam phobia has been).
Unfortunately, many people talk and act out of ignorance and uncalled for hate. They willfully let themselves being brainwashed followers and eat anything they are fed via the media. But again that exist everywhere. The point is one should always be mindful that “hate perpetuates hate”, and to blame the actions of these people, on a religion, ethnicity, or homeland is insane and close-minded.
Do these people really listen to what they say??!! It’s like saying: A brown person can be more likely a terrorist than a white person! It’s also like saying: A Muslim man will more likely be a “terrorist” and if he is a Middle Eastern, that’s even perfect and of course he will definitely have some kind of connection to Al-Quiada. However, anyone from any other faith or religion commits an act of terror and extreme violence will be referred to as “mentally disturbed" or a "lone gunman", and of course with no connection to Al-Quiada or any other terrorist group.
We all know that Timothy McVeigh was White and Christian and Terry Nichols was also White and Catholic. But I never group Christians and Catholics together as mass murders, because religion, race or ethnicity has nothing to do with terrorism. But why the media and many people out there (Who could be either Christian or Catholic) keep linking terrorism to Muslims. Those two convicted murders for the Oklahoma City bombing, took 168 lives (including 19 children under the age of 6 and injured more than 680 people. So, I believe anyone who blames skin color, religion, or ethnicity is just as pathetic as the bombers.
Islam states that there is no difference between a white and a brown, an Arab and non- Arab except by the content of their morals, qualities, traits, and values.
I don’t know how hard is it for many people to get the idea that there are good people and bad people in every race, religion, creed, or country of origin. Everyone deserves to be judged on who they are as an individual. I’m wondering when many people get the idea that blowing up children is not practicing “Islam” any more than killing abortion doctors is practicing “Christianity”. Ousama Bin Laden, Timothy McVeigh, Terry Nichols or many other terrorists- from different religions and races- who got blood of innocent people in their hands are men chose to do this; they are responsible for their actions. It’s NOT the country they were born in or originally from. It’s NOT the religion they chose to practice (although there is no religion on earth that support or endorse the killing of innocent people, and if there is, it can be named anything else but religion) that told to go after bombing innocent people. Plus, there is no Islam in what was done. Islam is all about peace and it’s just so sad and it hurts to even think about it.
After all this, the main question is: Do we really want to become the monsters we hunt? Sadly, what many people are doing and saying is just another example of how religion and race kills people and destroys lives.
I hope people listen to the message of little man Martin and stop hurting people. I hope they will stop the hate and grow up!! Whether the victims are 3 or 3000 in any corner in the world, it’s still a tragedy!! It’s not about my country, my people, my religion, my race. It’s about humanity.
We all have the right to believe in whatever ever god you choose. I don’t have to love who you choose, but I definitely MUST RESPECT others’ choices and not judge them based on their religion, creed, race or skin color.
People who have no tolerance and respect for other human beings are just as evil as extremist. If we don’t respect one another, we will never have peace in this world. The change begins in our heads, our children, our family, and our friends. I hope people will wake up to this fact before they destroy each other.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
By Nafissa Assed
Sep 13, 2012
After God Almighty, the Libyan revolution would not have succeeded without the American aircraft radars and many significant efforts done by the American government. When America withdrew their forces from the coalition, Gaddafi easily attacked the city of Ajdabiya and almost broke Misurata. The American government took part and played a major role to save many Libyan civilians during February17th revolution. In a nutshell, unless the help of some of the countries, including the United States of America, to impose a no-fly zone over Libya to save Benghazi from a mass destruction and atrocities which were waiting to happen, thousands of lives in Benghazi wouldn’t have been saved.
Chris Stevens, who was murdered in Benghazi, was a friend of Libya and he tried to give a nice picture of the situation in Libya. He was really sincere in his directions to conduct cooperation between Libya and the United States and quickly opened the channels of communication to facilitate the process for Libyans who want visas to the United States. But sadly, some ignorant and fanatics have a different say, a say to smudge the image of Libya and Libyans in front of the world by such a vicious assault. The tragic attacks in Benghazi brought bitter tears and anger to me and many Libyans due to the loss of Chris Stevens and consequences that may lead Libya down a dark path. Today, not only the Americans, but also Libyans lost a freedom champion.
What was the guilt of Mr. Stevens and other innocent employees about issuing a film against Islam and Prophet Muhammad-peace upon him- that is happening in America? The idea behind the protest was unworthy and just drew unnecessary attention to this worthless film. The American government had nothing to do with it. Many people are still so primitive in their thinking, that instead of focusing on the injustice and intolerance happening in our Muslim countries, they prefer to give extra media hype to Dim-witted idiots overseas? Freedom of speech is everyone’s right and America allowed this film to be released because America is a country of democracy, not a country of autocracy and dictatorship. The answer is to argue against this filth, not to ban or kill. Many of us think that governments should outlaw things we don’t like because a lot of us have been brought up in dictatorships and can't rid ourselves of this way of thinking.
Prophet Muhammad said: “Whoever has killed a person having a treaty with the Muslims shall not smell the fragrance of Paradise.” Ambassador Chris Stevens was a peaceful person who held good intention for Muslims. Extremists are on fringes of the Libyan society. They are doing nothing but more harm to the country, they are a cancer to Libya and Libya may never go any step forward unless they are strictly stopped.
What happened in Libya yesterday was not a demonstration; it was an act of hate. I don’t believe that an act of hate should be allowed or protected, because if we defend someone's right to hate, then how are we going to protect the innocent people who are hurt or even killed because of a counterattack?
Demagoguery and aggressive demonstrations was never the answer to any wrong. Violent protests for the call to protect a religion neither increase someone’s faith nor enter them to paradise; such acts just keep all the good away and release all the harm from a Pandora’s box.
The prophet Muhammad, peace upon him died and life has gone on and on. Abu Bakr Siddiq, who ruled over the Rashidun Caliphate from 632–634 CE and was the first Muslim Caliph following Muhammad's death said: “Whoever worshiped Muhammad, Muhammad has died and those who worship God, God is alive and does not die”. Muslims can only show love and support to the Prophet by learning and applying the speeches of the Prophet, not by changing a Facebook profile picture or go on violent demonstrations and kill innocent people. Only hypocrites, who commit series of sins and assume they would reach atonement with their guiltiness by pressing the button and outrageously kill innocent people by the name of Islam. Nothing will touch Islam or the prophet Muhammad, not a book, not a movie, not a picture. What touched Islam and the prophet in Libya and in the world is the failure to remember and apply his speeches in our life.
Monday, March 12, 2012
نظمت مجموعة المساندة الوطنية وهيئه دعم ومشاركة المرأه فى صنع القرار و جمعية اهالينا و تحالف القوى الوطنيه احتفاليه بمناسبة يوم المرأه العالمي يوم أمس السبت 10/3/2012 في فندق المهاري "الراديسون بلو" , وكان من ضمن ضيوف الحفل الدكتور محمود جبريل, و عبد الحكيم بلحاج, والفنان ناصر المزداوي, وبعض من اهم شخصيات ثورة 17 فبراير, وقد سلم الدكتور محمود جبريل باقة من الزهور الي اهالي الشهداء الحاضرين في الاحتفالية
The National Support Group, the Support and Participation of Women in decision-making, association of ‘Ahalina’ and the coalition of national forces celebrated yesterday March 10th the occasion of International Women's Day in "Radisson Blu" Hotel. Among the guests of the ceremony was Dr. Mahmoud Jibril, Abdul Hakim Belhadj, and the artist Nasser Mizdawi, and some of the most important figures of revolution February 17.
|Mahmoud Jibril honoring me as a blogger/reporter and a daughter of a Libyan martyr|
|Giving my Speech|
|Sitting next to Mama|
|Shy shy shy :)|
|Coolest most respectful man. He is kind and so much fun - Masha Allah|
|Peace- Allaho Akbar ya Libya|
|With Rania my sister|
|With mamita :)|
|Shy after i received the flowers :p|
|Listening to a sad story|
|Striking a pose with mama :)|
|Live Long Free Libya :)|
|Those high heels killed my feet!! lol|
|Thanks Dr.Jibril for the flowers :)|
|Oum-Afrah (mother of a female martyr holding yellow bouquet) and Oum-Hisham (mother of a male martyr holding red bouquet)|