The Underlying and Undermining- What Our Digital Environments Represent

Atlanta, like any major city in America, looks to progress by bringing in new business, residents, and improving the local environment. Idealistically, improvement would be mean progressive and agreeable changes for everyone in the area. Unfortunately, in the real world certain groups are left behind or purposely hindered from said improvement. Logo of for the Central Atlanta Progress Inc The Central Atlanta Progress Inc. has been in operation since 1941. The group is dedicated to providing services that help maintain and stimulate the Downtown Atlanta area- namely through economic means with the help of investment by businesses in the area. CAP also works in association with the Atlanta Downtown Improvement District, another partnership with public and private sectors to help with the livability of the city. The organization’s president, A.J. Robinson, “manages the overall strategic functions of the organizations which are designed to make the Downtown Atlanta community more livable, vital and diverse.” (link) (“A.J. Robinson (President, Central Atlanta Progress and the Atlanta Downtown Improvement District,” WNBA.com). In print that sounds great. Diversity and progression are words we (millennials especially) love to hear. CAP’s initiatives like Trees Atlanta, COPA Inc (to improve the Centennial Park area), and the Downtown Green Source Program. These plans have brought back a good payout for the city- tourism, capital, general environmental improvements. However, when it comes to the bigger picture who is actually  benefiting from the changes CAP and ADID have brought to the Atlanta area? Maybe it is everyone, maybe it is a certain class of people. Whichever the case, the digital environment of CAP presents a slanted idea of “diversity” in the downtown Atlanta area. The environment, especially...

The Real Downtown Atlanta- Subjectively

Every environment is influenced through lenses. For example racial, gender, or class discrepancies can be expressed in an environments basic structure. In the case of this digital environment  racial, class, and gender issues can not only be seen in the literal sense, but also the way the video is filmed. While the video follows 16 Atlantans, only 6 of those people were different races. There were three black men, one black woman, and an Asian mother and son. There were no people of Hispanic decent featured at at all. There were more people of color featured in the background of video i.e. workers. 6 of the 16 people followed were white women. I wouldn’t call this a fair representation of the demographics found in downtown Atlanta. Shot of JoS. A. Bank, a probable contributor to the sponsor of the video Out of all the people followed, only one was a worker for the city of Atlanta and it was one of the three black men. As for the amount of woman, perhaps the video is attempting to say Atlanta is an equal opportunity place where women are welcome in professional business setting. The overwhelming majority of the people followed were in business casual attire. Perhaps intentional by the sponsors of the video, a nonprofit funded by local Atlanta business and institutions and those sponsors are clearly  presented throughout. We are following a specific class of people- white collar professionals. The camera angles and shots are careful to exclude the homeless one might frequently encounter Shot of the playground found at Woodruff Park walking down Peachtree or through Woodruff Park. The video is attempting to...

The Real Downtown Atlanta- Objectively

Logo for CAP The Real Downtown Atlanta is a video posted to Youtube by an Atlanta based nonprofit organization called Central Atlanta Progress and a public-private partnership  called The Atlanta Downtown Improvement District. CAP, founded in 1941, and ADID, founded in 1995, work to provide services that help maintain and stimulate the Downtown Atlanta area- namely through economic means with the help of investment by businesses in the area. The Real Downtown Atlanta shows a bit of the area CAP oversees and the real people you may find in Atlanta. The video begins with a shot of morning light slightly hidden behind a few of Atlanta’s buildings and quickly cuts away to a speedy Marta train against the backdrop of some of the taller buildings found in the city. The next shot brings us to a woman leaving the Marta station and making her way to a coffee shop. Once reaching the coffee shop, the camera begins to follow a man that had just paid for his coffee. By now the viewer may notice that the camera cuts from mostly medium long, eye level shots that don’t pan. This creates an awareness of the space around the person being followed in each shot. Those surroundings being various distinguishable places around Downtown Atlanta. These shots not only draw awareness to the surroundings, but makes them stand out as they are extremely still shots juxtaposed by only the movements of mostly one person. Most of the shots are sure to subtly show the names  of major businesses around the area when passing by or through them. This would be in relation to...

Oakland Cemetery

“Central Atlanta Progress | Atlanta Downtown Improvement District.” Central Atlanta Progress | Atlanta Downtown Improvement District. Central Atlanta Progress, Inc, n.d. Web. 25 Mar. 2016. <http://www.atlantadowntown.com/>. The Oakland Cemetery is maintained by The Historic Oakland Foundation, founded in 1976,and the city of Atlanta. They work “to preserve, restore, enhance, and share Oakland Cemetery with the public as an important cultural resource and as an island of tranquility in the heart of the city.”  The website is ideal for those planning on visiting the cemetery as it provides history to events to helpful tips like hours and maps. It is also helpful to those looking to support or work with the cemetery. The website was helpful to me entering the space because I was made aware of some of the architecture I would encounter and the general layout of the area.  The history  provided helped in my awareness of spacial and design differences as each section of the cemetery is divided based on race, religion, and even occupation. Tombstone symbols, size, proximity- they were all architectural differences influenced by the...

Nonprofits Organizations in the Digital Environment

Schwartz, Nancy. “Nonprofit Video: 9 Steps to Nonprofit Marketing Success, Plus Our Mistakes to Avoid.” Nonprofit Marketing Articles. Getting Attention!, n.d. Web. 29 Mar. 2016. <http://gettingattention.org/articles/67/social-media/tips-nonprofit-online-video.html>. Nancy Schwartz is a business owner and blogger who offers consulting services on market and communications to nonprofit organizations. Getting Attention is her online news letter with tidbits and insights for marketing and currently helps a number of nonprofits. Her target audience being nonprofit organizations looking to learn better business technique and strategic networking to expand or become more efficient. Schwartz provides the reader with numerous sources and ways to learn from case studies  to articles she’s written formed from personal experience (primary sourcing). This particular article denotes the do’s and dont’s nonprofit organizations should follow to create a successful and impactful video as we are operating “in the age of Youtube.” Although this source was published a few years ago and the internet and its users have evolved the article provides tips that still hold true as the tips are broad. She provides a step by step list outlining objective, video content, importance on audience and how style and tone of the video might influence them. I found this all specially useful when analyzing the digital environment as the video was made by a nonprofit organization. It helps understand lenses- for example why was this music chosen, what does it say about the company, who does it appeal to?...
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