Often we hear editors and owners of different media claim that contents are being created based on what citizens look for and want. Is that so? Have we ever been asked (and it is their obligation to ask us) whether we, for instance, read in the newspapers the contents in correlation with the lives we live? We wanted to hear what you think and, therefore, created the Media Observatory Refractor.
Sharpening Media Image (Refractor in further text) is a civil society project developed by independent media analysts (Aleksandra Aksentijević, Mirjana Mirosavljević Bobić and Tamara Ivančević) within the feminist cultural center BeFem. Refractor strives to observe and analyze Serbian media and interpret their content and readers
We planned it as a virtual and real space where citizens will have the chance, based on their system of values and need for responsible and accurate information, to say what they think about ways of reporting of some printed media, as well as to understand the ways how media messages (do not) contribute to persistence and/or growing discrimination in the society.
Refractor aims to raise awareness on the necessity for each individual to reach media literacy and master critical reading, in order to prevent media manipulation and discriminatory styles of writing. At the same time, it aims to examine and analyze the relation between media images and images of society – whether media mirror attitudes and values of the society or design them in the first place.
First stage of this project includes the analysis and accompanying report “Sharpening Media Image – Representation of Women in Daily Newspapers in Serbia”, along with exhibition of selected media texts that were analyzed (Blic, Danas, Kurir and Politika).