Youth in Media in Hong Kong and the United Kingdom

Abstract

Media and young people are closely connected with each other. Young people have been portraying in the media for centuries. Media can influence the generation of its epoch both negatively and positively. It can change youth’s way of life and global problems perception. For a long period youth culture was an integral part of the media development. In different periods of media promotion it reflected all the peculiarities of young people’s life, its culture and subculture aspects, and cultural impact on the youth development in different countries of the world.

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The dissertation assesses the role of young people in the media development and the interaction of the culture and media in United Kingdom and Hong Kong. It shows how the role of the subculture in the media can completely change the style of young people’s life and make them evaluate the main aspect of the national culture.

Introduction

The media is considered to have a profound influence on the social life texture and direction throughout the world. The impact of media on the life of young people is quite significant and important. It should be stressed that the media is often the vehicle for communication activities as it translate ideas, images and sounds into different public resources which can be easily accessible. Media is the motor of intellectual growth and development. It is necessary to underline the fact that media can be used by young people in order to express their inner motivations by means of their own poetry, music, Internet blogs creation and multimedia installations.

Nevertheless media can have a negative impact because of the spreading of propaganda spreading and potentially encouraging violence. Negative messages spread by the media can affect the adolescents’ way of life. Sometimes media violence is considered to be a harmful tool for the conscious development of young people but very often it can be regarded an educational method for learning about real life situations.

Media is the gates to social mobility, creativity, economic development and prosperity. A lot of young people throughout the world take advantage of media opportunities participating in democratic processes. A lot of on-line forums provide society with active discussions, exchanging ideas and expanding personal ideological horizons. Current situation in the world of the media shows that it becomes the central issue in the development of social life of young people. Such notions as television, Internet and different video games are considered to be an integral part of modern life development. In such states as Australia, India, Georgia, United Kingdom, Hong Kong etc. media is represented as one of the most significant and influential factors in human lives. Media is a guide for modern way of life, especially touching the life of young people.

Nowadays the role of the media in the UK is merely determined from the educational side providing a lot of opportunities for young people such as fast and cheap information which is considered to be a supplemental resource used in schools and institutions. In contrast to it the role of the media in Hong Kong is evaluated regarding its entertaining function in the life of young people. More profound and detailed information about the place of the media in the life of young people will be observed in this dissertation.

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This dissertation will research the ways young people have been portrayed in the media in United Kingdom and Hong Kong in order to disclose the main similarities and differences between the cultures of these two great world centres. This work is aimed at thorough research of culture history in UK and Hong Kong with the purpose of showing its connection and influence on the life of young people in various periods of state development. The dissertation assesses the impact of the media on the life of the youth highlighting all the negative and positive sides of this influence.

The Aims and Objectives of the study

The principal objective of the study is to explore the role of the youth in the media development. The study is aimed at the research of the different types of youth cultures in Hong Kong and United Kingdom. It evaluates youth participation in the historically predetermined young people’s subcultures. The study explores different historical factors of cultural subdivisions.

The study focuses on the following objectives:

    • Historical development of the cultures in Hong Kong and UK;
  • Types of youth subcultures dominating in different historical periods of their development;
  • Young people’s participation in the media of UK and Hong Kong and their interaction;
  • Negative and positive impact of the media on the young people life in UK and Hong Kong;
  • Culture and media interactions.

The dissertation is aimed at the research of the cultural aspects of young people’s life being reflected in the media.

Literature Review

(Wong, Louisa. Hong Kong’s “Hard Plastic” Youth Culture (November, 9, 2007)

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The author of the article focuses on the cultural aspects of the youth living in Hong Kong. She stresses that youth culture in this country is characterized as “Hard Plastic” having the elements of the street culture. The author underlines the fact that this culture stream is rather conflicting and problematic for the society which got used to basic standard values of the nation. This culture is considered to be the virtual future of the modern generation.

(Gigli, Susan. Children, Youth and Media around the World. InterMedia Survey Institute. 2004)

The author tried to highlight the role of the media in the young people’s life on the international level. She provided the research paper with different statistical data and diagrams proving the significance of the television, radio and the press in our life. The author used the data highlighting the rights of young people as to their participation in the media and the level of their protection in case of negative influence. The article underlines the main opportunities and risks provided for young people by the media. She managed to reflect the state of the contemporary media in the world through the survey diagrams.

(Kovacs, Tamas. Violence in Films. n.d.)

The author of the article devoted his research to the negative aspect of the television influence on the young people’s life. He managed to provide the reader with examples of different films with the youth participation which have a negative impact on the young audience. He showed two different sides of the problem. On the one hand violence in films promote cruelty and support it; but on the other it teaches young people to fight violence in case they face it.

(Chan, Chitat. Young People and Youth Media Practice in Hong Kong. 2006)

This article is devoted to the theme of youth media opportunities. The author tried to show how media helps modern generation express their views in Hong Kong. The author disclosed different media settings functioning in the country. The information is devoted to the new media technologies and youth activities connected with them. The author highlighted the emergence of different media organizations in order to attract youth participation I the media development process of the country. Thus, young people begin being interested in the media of the country from early ages.

Cultural Value in Society: Youth and Culture

Nowadays globalization is considered to be more visible in the process of youth’s participation in its formation. In all countries throughout the world young people are an integral part of culture development engaging in the cultural borrowing process and in the reproduction of cultural practices of their own country. Thus, the rebellion of Japanese punk, hip hop subculture in Australia shows the reflection of culture history developed by young people in different epochs.

It is quite difficult to assess the meaning of the culture of different centuries, but it should be noted that every generation tried to reject the previous one by developing new styles of cultures and subcultures. Modern cultural development can be seen in progressive postmodern diversity promotion, proliferation of cultural styles and forms. Youth culture is merely characterized as a homogeneous one because it cannot be divided into several forms of young people’s styles.

The research of young people’s cultures in Hong Kong and United Kingdom provides with the clear characteristic of this notion as “generational qualities forming youth subcultures being characteristic of their epoch and style”. (Kahn & Kellner, 2003) Generally speaking youth culture in these countries is closely connected with the media. Different former types of youth cultures and subcultures are now rejected because of the significant media role in the life of young people. For example, in Hong Kong millions of young men and women spend much of their time browsing the Internet and just chatting online because they cannot leave their homes fearing interpersonal contact. According to the Youth Culture Center Survey in Hong Kong modern technology development resulted in global isolation of young people from the whole of society and lack of socialization of new generations. Cultural freedom allows students to develop their own styles of cultures. Such opportunities cause a lot of contradictions in society. It can be explained by the fact that modern young people can develop and practice their own culture rejecting at the same time the dominant one which was accepted by society.

Cultural Interactions. Japanization of British Culture

The end of the twentieth century faced close interactions between Japanese and British cultures. It was the time when high level of media and culture in Japan, Hong Kong influenced cultural development of the whole of Europe. Japanese imagery of 1990s became more vivid in Britain. Products and things produced in Hong Kong and Japan were more and more imitated in other countries of the world and they were considered to be fashionable and model of the culture. An example is modern fashion which uses magazine models containing bright Asian features.

Modern Hong Kong and Japanese images reflect the future of the world. A vivid example can be observed in the movie “Bladerunner” where Japanese images and those of the future are combined into one whole. Hong Kong and Japanese culture influences political and social views of modern generations from many countries. Thus, a great variety of animated films produced in Japan and China help to form a strong political confidence among modern young people who try to resist contemporary political and cultural stream of development. Western young people are very receptive to Japanese ideas and fashion. Nowadays Western culture uses the main features of Hong Kong images and fashionable motifs in order to promote its main ideas and make them more influential and strong among British young people. (Kinsella, 1997)

UK Youth Cultures and Subcultures

Cultural awareness among the population is one of the most important aspects of national cultural development. British culture has been under the influence of other countries for a long period of time. Youth culture which is spread in society is now under the impact of British television broadcasting. It means that media plays a significant role in the formation of young people culture. The history of the youth cultural development is closely connected with the formation of the UK monarchy standards of the contemporary community.

Youth culture and broadcasting area spread in UK are functioning together in modern cultural life of the society. It should be noted that the formation of TV and radio stations with programs for young people and special charts change the general view on the culture of the previous generation. Though the media sphere is widely developed in the cultural aspect of the UK culture, modern young people try to create their own peculiar features of national contemporary culture.

Over the past century a great variety of teenage subcultures appeared in the United Kingdom. Thus, there are certain groups of young people who name themselves “scally”. This strange characteristic of British culture shocks foreigners and usual onlookers very often. “Scally” people got used to run across the road shouting something from the distance.

Ahh… Go home!!”

This youth is usually about 12 dressing similar clothes, very often it is black. This subtype of British culture was originated in Liverpool and spread on the whole territory of the UK. Girls participating in such groups have particular make up, so-called “applied-with-a-trowel”.

Youth culture of UK has many peculiarities. It is very bright and widely spread among modern generation, though it has negative aspects. Thus, the example of “scallies” is not unique; there are also such bands as “knackers” which usually consist of young people and got used to constant drinking. Such so-called subculture is predominantly developed in Ireland. “Can Gangs” is one more example of young cultural features of the UK. These groups of youth are characterized by hanging near shops in order to ask people to buy some beer or vodka for them.

One of the biggest subculture of the UK is “knuckle-draggers”. These bands are the dominant ones among all others. They are characterized by terrorizing pedestrians by means of stupid things shouting. They are similar to scallies and have their own style of clothing and manner of speaking.

New subculture types which appeared in the UK contradict all rules and norms of the basic general cultural values. The negative role in the formation of the young people’s culture plays peer pressure influencing music tastes and fashion perception. According to some social surveys of the UK modern young people have higher grade of cruelty and indifference to their peers. It is the background for the creation of such terrible and harmful bands. For example, the mergence of gingers is closely connected with the factor mentioned above. Gingers are the young people who suffer undeserved abuse having unusual hairstyle or pale skin. “Why so pale?” is the usual phrase they got used to hear from their peers.

Such behavior among young people can lead to serious consequences connected with psychological disorders. Cultural development for young people is their own small world without taking into account classic literature or music. UK young people culture is as well individual and covers many aspects of youth development. (BBC News, 2004)

Punk in United Kingdom

Punk style is widely spread among the young people. This fact is closely connected with the historical features of its development. This subculture firstly appeared in United Kingdom in the mid 1970’s together with its emergence in America and Canada. Punk can be defined as a punk rock branch because it is merely based on the rock music. Punk existed in UK in different forms and styles. (Perry, 2006) This style is the expression of the unique punk culture.

The first form of punk culture which appeared in UK was called protopunk. It was the beginning of the punk spreading among the British young generation of that time. The style of music left a print on the creation of the whole punk culture where youth perceived and used all the features of the musical style making them fashionable and unique. Further on, UK punk continued to develop and that is why the following subculture types of punk appeared in the country:

  • Hardcore punk (covering such aspects of social life as politics, economy, war etc.); (Blush, 2001)
  • Pop punk (a combination of pop and rock music associated with the popular culture of that time);
  • Oi! (a kind of a punk culture covering working class genre; it was firstly originated in UK in 1970); (Dalton, 1993)

UK punk culture influenced not only the style of music spread among the population but also body modification, hairstyle and the manner of clothing. Youth of the UK tried to imitate all the features of the fashionable popular lifestyle creating bright colors and dramatic shapes of their style. Young people contributed to the development of different dancing styles connected with the punk culture peculiarities. The most popular styles were pogo dancing and moshing (a slam dancing).

The UK punk style analysis provided with the fact that this class was predominantly for males and comprised anti-racism features. Punk youth subculture had a lot of bands and fans who used to visit different concerts and events devoted to the highlighting of this culture.

Rave in United Kingdom

Rave is considered to be an organized musical area covering such fields of musical styles as trance, techno, bass and drum. UK society, to be more exact the youth of the country, faced the development of this style in the mid 1970-1970s. This style of music brought a lot of innovations to the life style of young people. The emergence of this subculture brought some tension to the social life. It was closely connected with economic alienation fears and contradictions between liberalism and conservatism caused by the introduction of the new youth subculture.

The significance of this style was reached in UK in 1990s, during the Clinton administration in the US. Rave influenced the behavior of British youth resisting generally accepted norms and values of the society. Thus, rave style was the main reason for noise violation and illegal drug use. Young people, who were actively involved in the development of rave subculture in UK, were under severe control of local police. Youth activities have changed with the introduction of rave style of life. First of all, drugs became an integral part of rave music; LSD, marijuana and hippies were widely spread among the young population causing troubles to some aspects of social life.

Current situation of the rave style in UK differs from the time of its peak in the development. The only sphere of rave style which has fans and participants is music. The manners of life style, habits and social violation characterizing rave subculture remained in the past. Rave culture grabbed special attention of specialists and was thoroughly examined by many researches. UK rave subculture can show different aspects of its influence on the general youth culture:

  • Social organization. Rave was considered to be grassroots fashion members of which got used to isolated places, warehouses and unlicensed venues;

This aspect was very important for the members of this UK subculture because it characterized it as being deviant being in violence by law.

  • Another aspect of UK rave characteristic is its attitudes and beliefs;
  • Symbols. It should be stressed that rave style left print on the language dialect creation, gestures and way of clothing.

Clothes of rave subcultures members were trainers, rave t-shirts and props, such as stuffed animals, pacifiers, neon bracelets).

  • Norms of behavior. Behavior meant listening to the rave music, chatting with friends, dancing.

So, it should be note that the rave style of youth subculture left one of the most significant prints on the history of young people’s culture. (Anderson, 2007)

Skinhead subculture in UK

UK is the motherland of the skinhead subculture. This stream appeared in 1960s as the working class subculture. The first representatives of this lifestyle were under the impact of West Indian rude culture dominating in that time. At the beginning of skinhead culture development it was merely concentrated on such elements as not race or political values. (Rawlings, 2000)

In 1950s working class in UK faced difficulties in the spheres of education, economics and housing. Nevertheless the economic boom resulted in disposable income increase for the young people. It was the reason for the rapid development of popularized cultural fields such as R&B, movie etc. as youth spent their income on these cultural areas. So, it was the beginning for the mods youth dominance in the culture of UK. Mods were interested in the most fashionable cultural styles, scooters and music. With further development of mods culture the following subtypes appeared:

  • Hard mods (they looked like a working class with short hairstyle characterizing their groups);
  • Peacock mods (they used to wear the most expensive clothes and were not too violent);
  • Lemonheads (these groups of young people were known as skinheads dominating all other subtypes).

Skinheads’ subculture was considered to be one of the most influential among all mods subtypes. They had short hairstyles and expressed some features of the hippie culture representatives. So, UK “gave a birth” to the development of the major youth culture; its members concentrated on Jamaican style, to be more exact on its music such as reggae, ska and rocksteady.

In late 1970s this subculture became one of the most popular in UK. A lot of novels written by Richard Allen were devoted to this cultural style making it more popular. A significant role of skinhead subculture resulted in creation of different subcategories among young people:

  • Smoothies (young people were characterized by hairstyle of shoulder length);
  • Suedeheads (young people used to manipulate hairstyle with comb);
  • Bootboys (the fashion of this subgroup was characterized by mod length hair).

Skinheads refused traditional style tendencies and even absorbed some features of pun rock youth subculture. In 1979 one could observe the increase of the skinheads fans which resulted in the great media attention. Thus, UK skinheads became popular not only in Britain but also this culture was adopted in many countries throughout the world.

Skinheads were characterized by a particular style of clothes. Some representatives of this subculture preferred to shave their hair with razor; but in most cases they had short hair of different styles. Their clothes combined traditional features such as t-shirts and suits or jackets. In 1970s skinheads promoted tattoos making among their members or fans. They made images which were closely related to their subculture.

UK skinheads promoted their views and beliefs not only in Britain. The representatives of the subculture were divided into bands according to their vision of the political situation and racism in UK and in the whole world.

  • Right wing skinheads were widely spread in the USA; they were considered to be patriotic and quite conservative;
  • Left wing skinheads were great in number; they were considered to be anti-racists and comprised anarchist skinheads and some members of redskins;
  • White power skinheads were highly political and predominantly racists. They were nationalists and their interests differed a lot from the traditional ones accepted by the majority of skinheads.

Thus, UK skinhead subculture had a lot of aspects covering social life of the youth at that time. It should be stressed that the number of skinheads is not so great nowadays, though people are interested in the peculiarities of the UK culture developed at that time. (Rawlings, 2000)

Youth Culture Peculiarities in Hong Kong, China

The development of the Hong Kong Culture began with the cultural roots of China and western culture. The culture of Hong Kong sponged a lot of Chinese traditions and customs. The analysis of the youth culture of Hong Kong provides with the reflection of cultural roots of China covering all aspects of social life of the population.

Nowadays China is regarded to be a fast developing society. It becomes more capitalistic and materialistic due to the era of globalization and technology development. Modern generation contributes to the promotion of contemporary commercial culture despised by previous old generations. Nevertheless popular culture became an integral part of modern life in Hong Kong with its own cultural style developed by young population of the country. Contemporary situation leads to constant contradictions between modern young culture and intellectual discourses; modern generation resist orthodox values adopted in the society by the intellectuals. Despite this fact, young people got used to practice their own cultural style with the help of new technologies refusing dominant cultures accepted by previous generations. (A Study of University BBS Youth Culture in China, 2007)

However, the situation described above does not mean that people are equal within the culture. Hong Kong power distribution of different cultural practices among the population cannot be stable and fixed because social, cultural and economic capitals are unbalanced within society. Resistance to the main cultural stream of the young population can be explained by the presence of conjunctural factor in the society; to be more exact it means historical conditions under which modern generation is to resist generally accepted cultural values.

To analyze the culture of Hong Kong in more detail it is important to stress that its young population considers to be characterized as “Hard Plastic” or “HP”. In one of the conducted surveys a teenager was asked to disclose the meaning of the street culture of Hong Kong. The answer was given without any hesitation “Hard Plastic Culture”. In order to understand this notion better it is necessary to underline the meaning of the term “plastic” that is a combination of polymers containing some additional substances for performance or economic improvement. But the meaning of this notion can be explained and understood differently. “HP” can be used for witty slang speaking or pranks playing.

This emblem is a characteristic and symbol of the Hong Kong youth “Hard Plastic Culture”. The generation of this culture used to tag each other with this symbolic icon. It should be noted that during recent years young people tried to promote this type of street culture not only in Hong Kong but through the whole country shocking older population by this. This culture is a great example of modern contradiction of young generation to former cultural values and customs. Thus, the 10th anniversary devoted to the celebration of the Hong Kong integration with China was influenced by the representatives of the “HP” culture. The government contributed to the creation of the special song for the holiday while HP youth changed it mocking Donald Tsang and promoting their “masterpiece” on YouTube and their own site.

“Donald’s hunted a job! (I will get the job done!)

Flattery noise lasts for whole century.

Universal Suffrage! (Universal Suffrage!)

Eight hundred crooks pick within a cage.

Toy with you, Dine with you, Chairman’s you

Arrogance and mockery is everywhere,

brown nosing you dare.” (Wong, 2007)

The number of HP culture representatives is unknown but it is constantly increasing. According to the data of the main site of HP culture “Goldenhongkong.com” there are more than 25 000 on-line users of HP culture. Certainly some people think that “Hard Plastic” is just a type of jargon used on-line, but this very culture is widely spread in Hong Kong. HP culture is the future of modern generation of Hong Kong. (Wong, 2007)

Hong Kong Subculture Types

Methods of subcultures studies have been developed over many centuries taking into account such aspects as their functionalism in society, leisure and cultural approaches. Youth subcultures are developed in all the countries throughout the world though they have different influential significance depending on the basic culture and characteristics of the nation.

Subcultures study of Hong Kong Youth comprises the description of such youth direction as punk, rave and skinheads youth direction.

The development of these cultural subtypes is closely connected with their functioning at the territory of China. Hong Kong young people have been always characterized as those obtaining peculiarities of Chinese cultural types of culture. It should be stressed that the history of the most popular youth cultural types developed in Hong Kong was rooted merely from United Kingdom youth culture.

Punk in Hong Kong

In comparison with the British punk, Chinese one appeared much later. The time of blossom in Hong Kong punk culture was mid 90s. In Hong Kong punk is considered to be a variation of China’s underground. At the beginning of its development this style of young people was perceived as amateurish, but with every passing year of its existence and spreading among the youth punk became a powerful culture. In music punk was the background for the creation of many punk bands Tianjin, Xi An etc.

The way of clothing was really shocking for society, though young people tried to copy it throughout the world. This style has typical hairstyles, clothes and even manner of speaking. Young people who wanted to be punks joined into bands and shared their interests following the rules of the punk style. It should be stressed that in the present situation in Hong Kong punk is not so bright and influential among the youth. Some people think that the period of punk development is over though it is still observed throughout the world. There are still some representatives of this style in Hong Kong and in other countries of the world who will try to contribute to their style of life and music. There are a lot of fans of punk style among the modern population though the original punks are merely of middle age with the views of the previous generation. Hong Kong punk style made impact on modern social life of young people. (Dorston, Punk and Post-Punk Subcultures: Do It Yourself)

Rave in Hong Kong

The development of the rave style in China was observed much later than in the UK. Rave spread in Hong Kong and caused much noise and the emergence of negative bands promoting their vision on the style of music and life. Hong Kong rave was closely connected with the development of disco-style dance and sound amplification.

The rave period changed youth culture rapidly. It can be explained by the fact that the rave increased the promotion of drugs and alcohol among young people living in Hong Kong and in the whole country. Young people tried to follow the fashion copying the rave style completely. The way of clothing and speaking introduced with the rave blossom influenced the way of young people’s life.

One could easily find girls distributing cigarettes. One of the brightest characteristics of this style was t-shirts and caps underlining the main features of the rave musical style. This subculture is considered to be the background for the creation of the nightclubs row at the territory of the country. Tobacco promotion was the most terrible feature of the rave subculture period. Young people lived in their own small world of rave subculture contributing to its development in the mid XX century.

Hong Kong newspapers presented special articles related to the cultural situation among the young people highlighting the aspect that drug promotion reached the peak and the Ministry is to take measures in order to fight uncontrolled behavior of the younger generation.

Nowadays rave is a type of electronic music rather than style of life as it was observed before. Present generation of Hong Kong associate this subculture with the mix of electro sounds which one can listen to at any modern night club in Hong Kong. (China: rave paves way to grave, 1998)

Skinheads in Hong Kong

Skinhead subculture is not so much developed in Hong Kong and in China in general. It should be stressed that nowadays about 2% of the modern population understand what this subculture really meant at the time of its development.

Hong Kong young people faced the introduction of skinhead culture in 1970s when UK youth was completely familiar with this style of youth life. This youth subculture is considered to be the British one that is why the young generation of Hong Kong had never been deeply involved in the streams of this style. Nevertheless in 1980s youth of China felt the influence of skinhead fashion. Young people used to have short hair and follow some tendencies of Jamaican rude culture. Hong Kong youth was under the impact of ska music and Kongo, Fanti religious views.

It should be noted that the present time of cultural development in Hong Kong does not reflect the former impact of skinhead subculture. One can hardly meet people who are acquainted with the main peculiarities of this young people’s subculture. The only place where all representatives of skinhead subculture used to gather is special concerts devoted to their style of music and close to their way of life. Such concerts are very often full of skinheads who stand out of the whole society of Hong Kong. Nowadays skinheads’ main aim is racial self-defense by means of spiritual and physical trainings. Anti-racists questions remained to be the central ones for the representatives of this subculture. Modern skinheads are not as violent in comparison with former ones. They can evaluate the meaning of national cultures and back their positions without taking violent measures. This is the main reason why people of Hong Kong do not know too much about the peculiarities of this culture and its representatives. (Skinheads in China, 2006)

Youth and Media: Have Young People been portrayed in Media?

The development of youth subcultures has always been considered of a great concern for the mass media because young people’s behavior being portrayed in terms of culture could result in social and moral disorders of the population. This concern was the main reason for the detailed research of all cultural movements in which modern generation participates. As a way of example, the movie “Rock around the Clock” disclosed riotous young people’s behavior in 1950s in the territory of UK. As a result this film was banned in some countries.

Some time later in 1970s the mergence of the group The Sex Pistols caused a lot of contradictions in the media. It was closely connected with the lyrics of the rock group which was of an anarchistic character; it resulted in the banning of group’s tracks in radio stations and shops.

The interactions between the media and the young generation continued. The research of youth subcultures presented above gives a clear view on the troubles faced by society during the peak of their development. Thus, the formation of Washington Music Center in 1980s and the mergence of the great amount of different rock and rave groups led to cultural disorders and limitations in the society. Thus, as a result youth rave parties were prohibited in many countries as they were considered to be illegal and even criminal.

With every passing year of youth cultural development its influence on media increased rapidly. One could observe interactions between youth subcultures and the Internet. Internet as a new type of the media allowed young people great opportunities of communication and personal inner entertainment. Internet is considered to be the background for the spreading of the virtual culture among young people. On-line communication became an integral part of modern generation’s life. It replaced real life face-to-face contacts between young people taking modern young people in the life of virtual world.

Nowadays media present young people as a lazy and passive generation following the stream of the modern fashionable tendencies not only in culture but also in the way of life. New technologies increased the opportunities of modern youth making their life easier and cloudless.

Youth participation in Media development in Hong Kong

The research of some subcultures existed in Hong Kong in previous centuries provided with a clear understanding of the young people’s role in the media functioning. It should be stressed that nowadays youth play an active role in the development, widening and promotion of the media. Youth media production content covering plenty of festivals and screenings reflects the personal vision of young people on the culture in the country they live in.

BWWTC (Buddhist Wong Wan Tm College) is regarded to be one of the brightest activities for those who are interested in media in Hong Kong. This school based activity is sponsored by the Government of Hong Kong; besides nowadays a lot of schools in Hong Kong are provided with small audio and video studios which give a lot of opportunities for the modern generation to participate in media development.

Youth of Hong Kong has a lot of opportunities to present their country through the means of the media such as special TV programs and movies. Every year one an observe annual Hong Kong Short Film and Video Awards inspiring modern population to participate in media more deeply and produce creative pieces of video works reflecting the culture of contemporary generation.

It should be noted that media production settings of Hong Kong culture influence youth voice position in the media development, its style and forms. Hong Kong culture is rich for media presentations on the part of modern young generation.

TV Programs and Films in Hong Kong Youth Media

Kung Ping Road is a vivid example of three minute animated film reflecting the youth life of the country. This Flash animation discloses the fight of the morality between young men. This work underlines the main features of the young generation of the country whose motto is “Hard work is always rewarded”. All the characters of this short film are young people living in Hong Kong but having different morality and social status.

One more example of the media productions of Hong Kong is Changing Head. This digital video can be observed by any resident or non-resident of Hong Kong following dramatic flow of thoughts of the characters of the story who are young people as well. This video is considered to be one of the most popular among the youth and refer to not-teaching sections on the web-sites. This video is a cultural heritage which shows how easily modern young people can change their way of life and cultural values on the example of a person changing the head.

Hong Kong media field comprises a great amount of works, video and audio material, underlining the peculiarities of the national youth subculture. Ideological relationships of media industry and youth culture development highlight different types of young people existing in various cultural periods. According to Stanley, the author of Kung Ping Road, modern generation is merely interested in having a fun and entertaining themselves, no matter how they can do this. Cultural values are not so significant for them and besides, they are quite different from previous centuries.

Nowadays young people enjoy the opportunities provided by the media in Hong Kong. They can easily express themselves by means of documentary shows or films. Internet has become an integral part of modern young people. All culture and subculture areas are merely developed by means of the internet. But it has a negative side as well. It should be stressed that young people began to live a virtual life transferring in another world of games and shows. Hong Kong media sphere is developed enough; young people and media make use of each other. Thus, youth tries to express themselves and entertain while media is merely interested in the way of youth life, their main subculture categories development in order to present the culture all over the world and promote its main aspects. (Chan, 2006)

UK Media

Media sphere of UK is broad and promising. It is well known through the world by means of its movies and cultural streams of the young people’s culture. Nevertheless it should be pointed out that modern media provide both opportunities and some kind of risk for the modern youth. Media globalization provides an access to all necessary information for young population of the country. Despite this fact modern media development threatens contemporary UK culture position. It is closely connected with the fact that modern generation can be used for exploitation or can be misinformed on purpose.

There is a special organization UN Convention which determines the rights of young people even in terms of media. It ensures complete freedom for the youth to express their opinion as to the culture and life situations without any pressure on the part of the media. Television is considered to be one of the dominant media for young people. Nowadays UK increased the number of TV “product” involving more and more youth into its projects. The number of youth projects in the country is more than 250 covering all the most popular UK channels. Young people present UK on the international level as a culturally developed country.

Dominating commercial media plays a significant role for youth subculture as it promotes the most fashionable trends of present time. Commercial movies and TV shows are merely devoted to the latest tendencies in the world of fashion and show business involving the participation of young people. (Gigli, 2004)

Despite all the opportunities provided by the media sphere for the modern generation, modern television is considered to have a violent impact on young people. According to the British Gallup poll television is constantly committing crimes over modern youth. Natural Born Killers is a youth film presented for modern audience. It is considered to be one of the most violent and it can influence psychological state of young people. The movie under analysis shows different episodes of killings and raping being spread among modern youth. It should be stated that young people portraying in cinematography are in some cases negative influenced by modern themes raised in the movies. Young people have access to the entire banned media products by means of the internet.

Violence presented in the media through youth participation provides a kind of support to contemporary national situation full of violence and cruelty among young people. Nevertheless there is another side of the coin. Young people participating in the films where violence is punished can learn a lot about the life in order not to follow and repeat such steps in their future. (Kovacs, Violence in Films)

Youth media is widely spread at the territory of UK. Young people who participate in media can positively influence their peers. The promotion of media expressing young people’s ideas can help others to feel more confident and reach equation. An example of one of the youth media projects is the film called Coming out produced in 2004.

This film tells a story about a girl who faced challenges while coming out in the world of equation. This youth media project contains youth humor and individual format; it was produced as a help for sparking dialogue as to homophobia and heterosexism. The distribution of the film was aimed at the broad influence on the young people not only throughout the country but worldwide. The creators of the film wanted to address queer and straight audience that is why distribution campaign covered as much media sources as it as possible. The creators involved distributor partners and carried out different festivals aimed at their program. Coming Out… had to make challenges of queer youth to be more experienced. The producers of the film tried to raise the film questions at schools and universities among the youth in order to involve them into discussions and increase the impact of the movie. They strived to make discussions of their project more accessible for the students of middle schools in order to cover all the audience they were completely interested in. creators managed to promote their work among the wide range of races, genders, ages and even sexual orientations. This project is the media presentation of the world problems by the youth of the UK. A lot of lessons devoted to the film Coming out… managed to disclose the basic theme of the project among the modern generation influencing their views and thoughts.

Media youth programs of UK give an opportunity for the young people to look differently on the social, political and economical problems of the county. Some media projects covering the participation of the youth is merely aimed as a kind of a model for showing modern generation how to fights this or that problem. The power of the films created for the young people’s audience is really influential and widely promoting.

UK Press and the Youth

According to the general press survey more than one billion people read newspapers every day. Modern news industry tries to integrate young readers and by doing this it attracts more and more attention of the modern generation of the country. Editors try to create an interesting material with the help of youth participation.

This theme is considered to be in the contemporary situation of the youth media. It should be stressed that UK Youth Ambassadors made different conferences highlighting the importance of youth participation in their field. It was stressed that newspapers should provide special sections for the youth self expressions in the regular newspapers parts. According to the latest conference devoted to the theme under analysis it was stressed that the perfect section created for the young people of the country should contain the following aspects:

  • It should have its own youth web site for the others to have access to the information;
  • It should provide a special gallery allowing its visitors to share different photos and pictures;
  • The main aspect is the inclusion of the street interviews with different special poll of young people;
  • The entertainment and sport section should be obligatory in order not to make the material too tense or formal;
  • It should have shout outs for the readers to feel pert of their community and society;
  • Events of the section are to be presented in the special calendar for the readers to be aware of them easily;
  • News alternatives such as video casts and podcasts should also be provided;
  • The section should have internships, scholarship opportunities and in-house training;
  • One of the most important aspect is the advertising of the section and its wide promotion;
  • It should promote and organize different monthly meetings in order to have an opportunity to share the interests and experience between the journalists;

There are a lot of examples of youth sections in UK presented in the field of the media press such as “British Pilot’s Section”, “Youth Point Advertising” etc. the participation of the young people in the media sector such as the press is considered to be an important aspect for the basic media development among the modern population and its expression in the world.

Conclusion

Young people are the motor of the cultural and media development of the country. They are considered to be the “mainstream” of the social life. Young people are usually organized according to cultural interests which they create by themselves. Culture and media help express individual interests of the nation and promote the culture of the country throughout the whole world.

The dissertation was merely focused on the following questions:

  • The development of the youth culture in different periods of UK and Hong Kong history;
  • Types of cultural subcultures and their influence on the young people’s way of life and style;
  • The interactions between the culture and the media in UK and Hong Kong;
  • The way young people portray in the media development in UK and Hong Kong;
  • The impact of the media on the psychological state of modern generation and their way of life.

Thus, we managed to analyze the main aspects of the youth portraying in the media of UK and Hong Kong. The dissertation shows that media and culture are closely connected with each other and they can be expressed with the help of young people’s participation. The research carried out proved that the development of cultural subtypes such as skinheads, rave and punk had an impact on the views and style of young people living in the period of their emergence.

Comparative analysis of two different countries and cultural centers United Kingdom and Hong Kong gave an opportunity to see the differences and similarities of their cultural development; we managed to evaluate the role of the culture and its close connection with the media in two countries. The research disclosed all positive and negative sides of the media impact on the young people’s psychological development. It showed how young people could express themselves and solve life problems with the help of media participation.

Youth and media are an integral part of each others. Media helps young people to find means of self realization and self expression; to promote their interests and share subculture streams development on the international level. Youth is the means through which media can exist. Media cannot create and promote cultural and social projects without youth participation. Media uses modern generation in movies, newspapers, music, radio and internet as one of the most important aspects of development. Young people help to present the country they live in and contribute to the cultural development of the nation through the media.

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Kahn, Richard & Kellner, Douglas. Global Youth Culture. The Post-Subcultures Reader. London, 2003.

Grossman, Perry. “”Punk””. St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture. Web.

Blush, Stephen (2001). American Hardcore: A Tribal History. Feral House. ISBN 0922915717.

Dalton, Stephen, “Revolution Rock”, Vox, 1993.

Dorston, Van. Punk and Post-Punk Subcultures: Do It Yourself. Web.

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