Author & Interviewer: Nethra Rammohan
After expressing a desire to analyze popular media and online trends with a critical eye, I was introduced to Tiffany Ferguson’s channel by a friend. Through her content, I have learned to assess the pervasiveness of new media, and identify the impact it has on my identity and relationships. Tiffany Ferguson is an ardent advocate of technological literacy, and urges her viewers to question what they consume, and ascertain an existence of underlying motives and agendas, that may be prevalent in digital culture.
NR: You've mentioned that you're a media studies major and a film minor. What have you learned through your studies that's been most helpful to your work on Youtube?
TF: Specifically, being a media studies major has been very helpful for my Internet Analysis videos. Often, I'm inspired for video topics directly through what I've learned in my classes. Generally, all the wider themes and issues [discussed] like representation, being critical of media, and where information comes from, are media literacy skills that need to be practiced. My classes are constantly reminding me to be critical of the media that I watch and create. As a creator, it's important for me to be careful about what I'm sharing and spreading, which is why I find research to be important in my work. I get messages [where I'm asked] to talk about different issues and crises, but I want to make sure that first, I take the time to learn about them. It's a challenging thing for anyone to navigate, but [even more so] when you have a platform. I'm a big fan of media literacy and encouraging critical consumption. I think everyone should be asking questions and doing your own research whenever possible.
Tiffany Ferguson answers other questions like:
- You've made a transition in your niche on Youtube from light-hearted videos targeted at young adults, to a commentary series exploring topics that are prevalent in the news and media. What caused you to shift genres, and what drew you to social commentary specifically? (0:48)
- Talk to us about your workflow: how do you come up with the topics you choose to cover in your videos, and what does the research process look like? (2:41)
- Do you have a favorite class you've taken or project you've worked on in class? (7:15)
- What advice would you give to aspiring content creators about finding success on a platform as competitive as Youtube? (8:18)
- In light of fake news revelations and the spread of disinformation, we've learned that public opinion can be manipulated through content on media platforms. How have you navigated this personally, and addressed it through your content as a media scholar? (9:36)
To see her responses, watch her video where she discusses media studies and her experience with her series, Internet Analysis.
To watch more of Tiffany Ferguson, visit her YouTube channel.
This story was written by third year LMC major, Nethra Rammohan for Jillann Hertel’s special topics course, Media for Community Building.
For further inquiries, please contact Senior Academic Professional Jillann Hertel.