It’s Funny ‘Cause It’s True: Battling Bad Media
Are programs like the Daily Show with Jon Stewart providing better access to news and current events than traditional news outlets? Why are we subjected to hours of reality TV that portray women as appearance-obsessed maniacs? And people of color are just in the media to fulfill stereotypes, right? Something is very wrong with this picture. But it does put a lot of fuel on the comedic fire…
Arm yourself with all the facts and figures you want, but sometimes the best way to tell a story or reveal the true nature of a situation is comedy. If done well, satirical takes on everything from politics to reality television are actually tools for change.
This panel is about having a few laughs, discussing comedy's role in social change, and talking about how humor can help us create policies that will lead to better media.
Candace Clement is an Advocacy & Organizing Manager for Free Press, a national organization working to reform the media. Her work has primarily focused on public and community media, and she is co-author of the 2010 report New Public Media: A Plan for Action. Prior to joining Free Press she worked extensively in college and community radio. Candace spends her "free" time playing music with her awk-pop-indie-rock band and can also be found band coaching and guitar instructing at Girls Rock Camp Boston.
Eddie Geller is an activist and comedian who founded the Open Source Democracy Foundation (OSDF) in the fall of 2010 with a single post to Reddit.com. As a video producer, Eddie’s work has been featured by the New York Times Magazine, Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, and other outlets he might use to try to impress you. He is currently working on a film about Net Neutrality and will also being appearing in the 2012 feature film, “For a Good Time, Call...”. All these career efforts have a unifying theme; he just can’t tell you what that is.
You might know Erin Gibson as the writer and host of Current TV’s “Modern Lady”, a weekly comedic look at how women are portrayed by the media. Because of the success of “Modern Lady”, Erin is a sought after speaker on topics like gender issues in media and how to use satire to inspire change.
As an actress and comedian, she’s appeared on “Chelsea Lately”,
“Parks and Rec”, HBO’s “Funny or Die”, “The Aisha Tyler Show”,
“King of Queens”, and web series for Comedy Central, The WB, and NBC’s “Community”. You can see Erin and writing/performing partner Bryan Safi as Michele and Marcus Bachmann for Funny or Die or as Becky Lake and Brock-Cody Stewart-Thomas in their monthly satirical entertainment show “Entertainment Hollywood” at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater.
Huffington Post Comedy named one of the "funny females you should be following on Twitter".