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Communications & Media
Research Proposal
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Determining The Effectivity Of The Journalism Style In The Philippines Regarding Extra Judicial Killings (Research Proposal Sample)


This is a research proposal given to us as a requirement for the course communication theories. in this requirement, we were required to use communication theories that we learned in making a research. this proposal is written in attempt to study the effectiveness of the journalism style in the philippines, with the help of deconstruction as a guide theory.

COMM 140 F
Columnist Gideon Lasco wrote on the Philippine Daily Inquirer on November 14, 2016 that “extrajudicial killings have been in the news for so long that they’re beginning to lose their newsworthiness” and then later added that the victims have been “stripped of their individuality” and are now “mere statistics” (Lasco 2016). Since the start of President Duterte’s administration, it has become evident that most media outfits have had headlines with statistics on the country’s mortality rate. National broadsheets --- including The Philippine Star, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, The Manila Bulletin, The Standard and The Manila Times --- have this year reported statistics of extrajudicial killings on their headlines.
Nevertheless, there have been news feature articles published by Rappler, a social news network, that have managed to focus on the lives of individual victims. I would focus on Rappler’s “The Impunity Series” and “The Drug War”, series written by their resident journalist Patricia Evangelista ( 2016). In these series, Evangelista has written reports on victims that were shot after being allegedly involved in drug trade. Her reports have one thing in common that separates her stories from the rest of the news usually presented on broadsheet front pages: a report on who the victim was. The five news articles analyzed for this paper all present facts about the victim and his/her family. They all tackled the victims’ love lives, work ethics, and even characteristics that made the victim stand out if ever he/she were placed in a mass grave. Evangelista has managed to report the lives of the victims without reducing them into plain statistics.
Given the two journalistic strategies of reporting extrajudicial killings, I intend to do a deconstruction on the portrayal of mainstream media on extrajudicial killings and how their portrayal affects the audience’s view of the victims. The theories that will guide me in my analysis are: (1) Jacques Derrida’s concepts of deconstruction and différance; and (2) Ferdinand de Saussure’s view on the language system and how the language we use has underlying meanings.
Jacques Derrida defined différance as a “non-full, non-simple, structured and differentiating origin of differences” (Derrida 1982, 11). Therefore, the attempt to find the différance in the language of mainstream media will help in deconstructing the concept of newsworthiness. By looking for the meanings privileged by the headlines of the country’s national broadsheets, the underprivileged angles of news will be exposed.
According to Ferdinand de Saussure, language is arbitrary in nature (Saussure 1983, 14). He presented the concept of how to read signs through analyzing the literal meaning before moving on to the meaning that is agreed upon by the culture.
Following both theories, I will look at the trend of mainstream media in what they tend to emphasize to market their newspapers to the national audience. Through Derrida’s concept of deconstruction, I will challenge the standard of mainstream media in their definition of newsworthiness. I will also consider the effect of statistic-heavy headlines on the audience and compare it to the effect of news feature articles on the same audience. My primordial goal in this paper is to open possibilities of marketing to a larger audience through effective use of language. Sausuure’s theory that the meaning of language is culture-dictated will also guide me in assessing the effectivity of the current journalistic style of Philippine media.
Reference List
Derrida, Jacques. 1982. Margins of Philosophy. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
Lasco, Gideon. 2016. “When we no longer cry.” Philippine Daily Inquirer, November. 2016. “The Drug War: Safe for the Good.” Rappler. Last modified November 06, 2016. Accessed November 30, 2016. /nation/143767-war-on-drugs-safe-for-the-good-tondo. 2016. “War on drugs: Slain 5-year-old buried in Dagupan City.” Rappler. Last modified August 31, 2016. Accessed November 30, 2016. /nation/144797-danica-mae-extrajudicial-killings-buried-dagupan. 2016. “The Drug War: Danica, my Danica.” Rappler. Last modified October 21, 2016. Accessed November 30, 2016. /newsbreak/rich-media/145167-drug-war-danica-dagupan. 2016. “The Drug War: Execution at Cessna.” Rappler. Last modified November 07, 2016. Accessed November 30, 2016. /nation/146652-war-on-drugs-execution-cessna. 2016. “The Drug War: Monday.” Rappler. Last modified October 21, 2016. Accessed November 30, 2016. /nation/149794-the-drug-war-monday,
Saussure, Ferdinand. 1983. Course in General Linguistics. Eds. Charles Bally and Albert Sechehaye. Trans. Roy Harris. Illinois: Open Court.
Annotated Bibliography
Blaza, Peter. “An Analysis on the Preference, Readership, and Perceived Advantages of Students when Choosing a Particular Medium and Brand of Online and Print Newspapers.” Bachelor’s thesis, University of the Philippines Diliman, 2010.
The author, a Journalism major from the University of the Philippines Diliman (UPD), conducted surveys and Focus Group Discussions to measure the preference of UPD students in newspapers. The study showed that most of the students chose newspapers based on content and credibility. Based on the study, the majority of the students preferred reading the Philippine Daily Inquirer, followed by the Philippine Star. It is to be noted, however, that the survey on newspaper preference is limited to national broadsheets. There were no specifications of alternative media or tabloids.
Derrida, Jacques. 1982. Margins of Philosophy. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
Jacques Derrida, a French philosopher, is known for his concept of deconstruction. This ...
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