Media Ethics with Scott Dikkers

Before the talk, do some research on Scott Dikkers. What is one surprising fact you learned about him? Does this help you provide context for his talk?

I learned that Dikkers has written award-winning short films, as well as a handful of successful humor books. I did not realize how much he has done besides The Onion. I now know that he has experience in a variety of media platforms, making him a very interesting and fit speaker for this lecture.

Pay attention to the scene as Scott talks during his lecture. What do you notice? Take a photo and include it in your post as well.

Unfortunately, I neglected to read that we had to take a photo before the lecture, so I do not have one. But, I did notice that the lecture was extremely crowded, so much so that they had to add more rows of chairs. The stage had a lot of plants on it and looked rather formal with a podium on the left hand side. I noticed that people of all ages were there, and many people from the Milwaukee community attended as well.

Write down something Scott says and fact check it. Is he right? Wrong? Somewhere in between?

Scott said George W. Bush really did not appreciate being made fun of in the Onion, and sent a Cease and Desist Letter to The Onion. I researched this statement and found that it is true, according to the New York Times:

Summarize in a paragraph the point of the talk.

Dikkers essentially talked about how The Onion came to be, and how it dealt with conflict throughout its time as a media company. He also talked about how it’s satire differs from fake news and its impact on today’s society. Dikkers even claimed that the world “loves lies” and will read to what we want to hear, and that the ethics problem is in our nature. He advised the audience to be “eternally vigilant” and to take it into their own hands to change the way media is interpreted.

Now write a headline that summarizes the talk.

Founder Scott Dikkers Speaks about the Progression of The Onion and its Place in Today’s Media

At the end of his talk, find someone at the event that you don’t already know and ask them what stood out to them the most. Include their full name and major or profession.

Alex Langosch, a Digital Media and Advertising Major, said that the message that stood out to him the most was that “You don’t need to start out making a lot of money to find success later in life.”

What did this teach you about media writing?

It taught me that media writing is more about the public than one might think. All media companies must think about what the public wants to hear and make the ultimate decision on what gets printed based on that. I also learned that a lot more legal issues can arise in media writing than I expected.

What was most useful to you about this experience?

The talk really inspired me to get more involved in producing media, as well as be more mindful as a media consumer.

Anything else to add?

I honestly thought this talk was so entertaining and I was really glad I went!