One Song Two Ways via YouTube


Music videos and commercials circulate quickly and widely because of YouTube. I love finding ways to use YouTube in the classroom so I like the ideas this project is activity forward.

My class had a discussion last Thursday after watching these two videos on YouTube back to back. Because we were able to access and compare the videos so easily, some students went home and watched the videos again for our discussion wrap up on Tuesday.

Video One: Katy Perry's Firework Music Video

Video Two: Victoria's Secret's Version:

When this Victoria's Secret commercial came out it caused a bit of a stir amongst fans who found the performance to undermine the point of Perry's initial video.

I wasn't sure what sort of discussion I wanted to have with students about this, but I wanted to know what they thought (and we practice media criticism in the class throughout the semester). Students brought up interesting points about the agents in the video, and we discussed how token characters emerge in "be yourself" videos like Perry's (and we watched Christina Aguilera's "Beautiful" music video which has similar characters and themes). Students participated well in this discussion and we were able to rewatch portions of the videos next to each other to clarify points and discuss the details of token characters.


Thanks for participating long distance!

I'm sorry I didn't make it!

I'll save any proactiv jokes about katy perry, but it doesn't shock me when companies distort music and popular culture when developing marketing strategies. For some reason Ronald Reagan using "Born in the USA" as a campaign song despite Bruce Springsteen's intention to bring light to the difficulties of the working class comes to mind as another example from many years ago.

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