The Importance of Diversity in Media

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Scout Nicholson, Sophomore Staff Writer

As you walk into the movie theater with your popcorn in hand, you take a seat, lean back and relax as the movie begins. As the movie progresses you are met with many familiar faces: The hero protagonist, the evil villain, the damsel in distress, and the comic relief. Every time you go to the movies you watch these same characters over, and over again. It becomes exhausting, some might find these same movies exciting, but in actuality it becomes tiresome. This is a direct comparison to the importance of diversity in the entertainment industry. Without diversity, we are caught watching the same stereotypical characters.  Diversity is extremely important in the media. It creates a more inclusive environment,  it educates, represents, and creates many new opportunities for an ever-changing world. 

Representation Matters

In a first-hand account of Kevin Leo Yabut Nadal, Ph.D., he expresses, “Growing up as a Brown Asian American child of immigrants, I never really saw anyone who looked like me in the media. The TV shows and movies I watched mostly concentrated on blonde-haired, white, or light-skinned protagonists… Because there were so few media images of people who looked like me, I distinctly remember the joy and validation that emerged when I did see those representations.” Bringing in more diverse casts creates a more inclusive,  accepting environment. When members of minority groups watch TV and see characters similar to themselves, it helps make them feel seen as a group rather than set aside and hidden from view.  While giving others a voice, diversity offers many the ability to find sources of joy and entertainment through characters like themselves. The film industry has changed for the better by not forcing the same blueprint characters onto the media, and it is of the utmost importance that we can maintain this pattern of inclusivity. 

Staying Educated 

The media is where a majority of people get their information from, which is why the more diverse the media becomes the more educated the viewers are. As stated in “The LA Note”, “Without diversity, many are exposed to only one point of view. Then, there is no way for them to discover the other points of view that coexist in the world.” Viewers can learn to become less ignorant on issues that most are oblivious to. In another article featured in “Diggit Magazine”, “The media people consume, the movies they watch, and the television series they follow, are not just entertainment, it also has an impact on the way people think and view other people.”  This knowledge can help them better themselves with the many new insightful topics that they can learn from film/media. 

Better Future for Film 

“Diversity in film helps the entertainment industry by being more inclusive to all no matter who you are, or where you’re from; this helps attract a bigger audience”, states Brennan Yohman, a Hubbard High School junior. While a sophomore, Peter Koulianos remarked, “By diversifying the jobs in the film industry it will create a large supply of applicants for said jobs which would then allow for growth in the film industry.” Creating a more diverse cast can open up greater opportunities and new experiences. Changing the way the film industry runs, and welcoming new ideas can help bring more success to the future of film. 

With all of that being said, it is crucial to recognize the importance of diversity in film. Diversity creates a more inclusive; welcoming environment. It also is very educational, exposing others to different perspectives. Lastly, diversity can create a better future for the film industry. Accepting new perspectives and welcoming change is the first step to a better future for entertainment. 

 

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