Media Madness: An Insider's Guide to Media
Reviewed: July 13, 2005
By: Dominic Ali / illustrated by Michael Cho
Publisher: Kids Can Press
64 pages, $16.95
There are, say creators
Ali and Cho, six big questions that you should ask yourself when looking at
to listening to anything on your medium of choice, whether paper based or
electronic. One way to look at this book would be to apply the BIG SIX.
1,Who created this
message and why are they sending it?
Ali and Cho hope to
make some money with this book, of course, but they also seemed concerned
with getting out some real information about media and making their audience
more media savvy.
2. Who is the target
audience and how is the message tailored to them?
This book is for teens,
perhaps early teens, but it is intelligent and clever enough to appeal to
older teens as well.
3. How does this message
get your attention?
Media Madness has
a kind of soft Mad Magazine appeal to it. Anchored by its central character,
Max McLoon it takes you on a friendly but revealing trip through every kind
of media that a youngster is likely to encounter, from television to radio,
print media, the music industry, the internet and video games.
This is also certainly
a book aimed at libraries.
4. What values and
lifestyles are shown?
This is a positive
book which challenges its reader to think about its content and encourages
them to appreciate diversity, which is something not often found in certain
types of media.
5. How might other
people read this message differently?
This is pretty straightforward.
The media might not want everyone to be this informed, but that's their problem.
6. What's missing
from this message that might be important to know?
For a book at this
level, I don't think much of anything is missing. The text is informative.
The illustrations are attractive and effective. Aside from the main text there
are lots of informational sidebars. It illustrates the techniques and jargon
under discussion by actually using them and them explaining them as part of
It even has suggestions
for activities that the target audience might try out to see how things work
in the real world.
All said, it's an
excellent little book that does what it sets out to do in a pleasant the effective