MDR’s seal and logo exemplify artistic cultural expression, humanity centered values, and upholding quality standards.
Culture Values Standards
It was important that MDR’s seal and logo be an artistic display of Black and Brown culture which so often is underrepresented or misrepresented in media. These communities are often represented as hyper-masculine, violent, uneducated, one-dimensional, hyper-sexual, and lacking moral standards. However, in truth, principles and values are an integral part of Black and brown life. So, it was also critical that MDR’s seal and logo exemplify principles and values that are recognizable throughout the world. This does not mean that content has to be religious in nature, showing a moral lesson, or showing these communities as always doing what’s right. But, it must be a balanced expression of complex characters that helps to dismantle stereotypes by showing the full spectrum of their humanity. It is important that diverse cultures, women, and people recognized as “other,” are seen as making positive contributions to the advancement of society. Thus, MDR’s seal and logo indicate certain standards must be held up when advocating for media done responsibly. It is not enough to increase the representation of women, communities of color, and disenfranchised individuals. The representation must also acknowledge the value, worth and honor of their full humanity.
About the Seal:
MDR’s Seal is a depiction of the Ancient Egyptian goddess Ma’at, who represents justice, order, righteousness, harmony, truth, balance and peace. The ostrich feather on the seal and in the logo, represent Ma’at’s feather of TRUTH.
In Ancient Egyptian mythology, a person’s soul had to pass through the Halls of MAATI where their heart would be placed on a scale opposite the feather of Ma’at. If the person’s heart was pure, it would be lighter than the feather and the soul could progress.
In MDR’s seal, media art (depicted by the MDR on the scale to the left) is assessed against principles of truth, balance and justice (depicted by the Ma’at feather on the scale to the right) to determine if it reflects the humanity of the people it represents. If the media is critiqued and found to meet the standards of humanity-driven media, it is recognized as Media Done Responsibly and receives MDR’s Seal (see Media Done Responsibly Campaign).
MDR’s tagline, taken from the mission, outlines the seal: “Empowering Communities, Engendering Respect through Media Done Responsibly.”
About the Logo:
The icon of the feather of Ma’at is a part of MDR’s logo, and any branding or representation of MDR should contain this feather. It is a visual reminder that MDR advocates for media that is just, balanced and truthful in its depiction. This artistic representation stimulates harmony, order, right action and peace within and toward the communities it portrays.
Media Done Responsibly is a project of the Pasadena Arts Council’s EMERGE Fiscal Sponsorship Program. Pasadena Arts Council is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Donations to Media Done Responsibly are tax deductible to the full extent of the law under Federal ID 95-2540759.