Tag Archives: Indigenous media

Fashion and Indigenous Representation

The two links below both concern fashion, representation of Indigenous people, and the use of social media.

Got Land? Thank an Indian

A Saskatchewan school created a controversy when they disallowed teenager Tenelle Star, a member of the Star Blanket First Nation,  from wearing her sweat shirt which read “Got Land?” on the front, and “Thank an Indian” on the back to school. After discussions with the school board, and First Nations leaders, the she was permitted to wear her shirt. But, the student was harassed on  social media, and eventually her parents felt it was safer for her to close her Facebook account.

Tactless T-shirts by Big Retailers

Vans

Vans was selling a t-shirt with an image of a beer can totem pole. A  Métis man from Vancouver, Chad Girardin, created a social media campaign via a  Change.org petition.  The petition asked Vans to remove the “Wizard Totem” shirt, and requested a formal apology. The shirt was removed from the shelves.

Gap

“Manifest Destiny was the catch phrase which led to the genocide of millions of my people, millions of Indigenous people throughout this country.”

Of course, Vans in not the first big company, to make such a faux pas. A few years ago  the Gap was selling a shirt with the catch phrase “Manifest Destiny“. That was the “term was used to justify American expansion into the west during the 19th century”. Again it was through a social media campaign that the company was forced to remove the t-shirt from their shelves.


 

References

 

4.4: Reporting in Indigenous Communities

Website: http://www.riic.ca/

This website is a resource for journalists who work with indigenous communities. It was created by Duncan McCue, who is a CBC journalist. McCue has also been a professor at the UBC School of Journalism. I found the most useful section of the website to be a Reporter’s Checklist. While the is written with a great deal of humour, it also serves as a valuable list of cultural concerns journalists should be mindful of when working in indigenous communities (e.g., Have you requested permission to film or photograph a ceremony? What are the protocols about naming, or using the image of, a deceased person in this Aboriginal community?). In the Teachings section, reporters who have worked with indigenous communities are encouraged to leave blog posts about their experiences in an effort to build “collective wisdom”. The Resources section is a collection of links to sites that can help reporters build their understanding of indigenous issues in Canada.

4.3: 8th Fire Dispatches

Website: 8th Fire Dispatches 

8th Fire is a four-part mini-series from CBC that examines the past, present, and future of Canada’s relationship to its indigenous peoples. The mini-series’ website includes many resources relevant to indigenous knowledge. Two that I want to highlight are “Maps” and “Aboriginal Filmmakers”.

The “Maps” section includes a series of thematic maps that can be layered over the map of Canada. One map is a Stories Map, which includes dispatches from different First Nation voices across Canada. These dispatches focus on a variety of topics including history and culture to economic development projects. The Treaties and Land Claims map provides a visual overview of historic treaties, Peace and Friendship Treaties, settled land claims areas, and unsettled land claims areas.

The “Aboriginal Filmmakers” section profiles a handful of Aboriginal filmmakers. Profiles are linked to “dispatches” that the filmmakers have created for CBC as part of the 8th Fire Series. Most of these dispatches are short documentaries. I feel this dispatch from Jessie Fraser is timely with our recent discussions around Inuit in Nunavut: An Inuk Reporter in Iqaluit

Resources for Indigenous Cultures around the World

NativeWeb

NativeWeb is good resource for finding information about international Indigenous groups. The site is used to aid communication between the many different Indigenous population, so they can find commonalities. Here is NativeWeb’s mission statement.

“NativeWeb is an international, nonprofit, educational organization dedicated to using telecommunications including computer technology and the Internet to disseminate information from and about indigenous nations, peoples, and organizations around the world; to foster communication between native and non-native peoples; to conduct research involving indigenous peoples’ usage of technology and the Internet; and to provide resources, mentoring, and services to facilitate indigenous peoples’ use of this technology.”

Common Portrayals of Aboriginal People

Media Smarts: Canada’s Centre for Digital and Media Literacy

Media Smarts is an organization which develops digital and media literacy programs and resources for Canadian homes, schools and communities. They work to support adults with information and tools so they can help children and teens develop the critical thinking skills they need for interacting with the media.

They have a section which explores common portrayals of aboriginal people, and provides resources, such as tip sheets, and lesson plans for parents and educators.

Two Row Times

Two Row Times: The Spirit of all Nations

Two Row Times is an Ontario based weekly print and online newspaper which covers Indigenous issues. Local, regional, national and international news stories are featured, as well  arts, sports and health & wellness. There is quite a variety of topics which are covered. For people like me, who have never attended a pow-wow, there is a useful article on the Do’s and Don’t of attending pow-wows.

I was also impressed at the number of social media outlets utilized.

social media links

mediaINDIGENA Podcast

This podcast by mediaINDIGENA discusses James Daspchuk’s book Clearing the Plains: Disease, Politics of Starvation, and the Loss of Aboriginal Life, and Canada’s Aboriginal policy of displacement through starvation.

“Western Canada lost a third of the population within six years.”

The mediaINDIGENA site is a a multimedia, interactive e-magizine which is a collection of works by 10 Aboriginal bloggers.