Media and Society Term Paper

Pages: 3 (947 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Communication - Journalism


Book Section Summary

Croteau, David R. & William Hoynes. Media / Society: Industries, Images, and Audiences. Pine Forge Press, 2002.

Media / Society

Although 'the media' has always existed, in terms of word-of-mouth and folklore, the advent of print created something new: a mass media that could extend far beyond the borders of the places that produced it. This fundamentally changed the nature of human social relations. The media is both produced by human social relations and is changed by shifts in human social relations (16-18). For example, the modern American Civil Rights movement sought to end segregation. Negative media images of African-Americans had reinforced the values of racist society. However the images of nonviolent civil disobedience on the nation's television screens created a groundswell of political support to change the laws at the federal level, and thus changed all American society. A social movement was produced in part by the media changed society through the media (27).

Part II: Media Industry & the Social World

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We live in a society that seems increasingly diverse in its media composition, as there is a proliferation of new media, newspapers, special interest cable channels, and media venues on the Internet. But the actual ownership of media outlets lies in the hands of a few major corporations, not 'the people' (34). Economics and ownership of the media influences the content of the media and limits real content diversity. The impact of advertising also limits the truth-telling nature of media outlets. The more concentrated the ownership of the media, the less available voice for truly alternative and unbiased points-of-view. Profit comes ahead of political change and even the new media has been swiftly colonized by advertising (62).

Term Paper on Media and Society Assignment

In terms of the political influence upon the supposedly independent media, although the First Amendment prohibits the stifling of free speech in theory, in practice, the courts have just as often limited the ability of individuals to freely vocalize points-of-view in the marketplace of ideas. Some of this, it could be argued, is positive, such as the fairness or equal time doctrine in politics, which requires the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to make sure that major candidates get equal or proportional time to advocate their views, as well as prohibiting advertisers from making false claims about products to consumers without the ability to verify those claims (99; 112). Regulating the media to preserve morality has proved a more dubious prospect. The guise of morality means that censorship can be used as a political weapon against unpopular points-of-view (101). There is also informal self-censorship of news organizations, as their tailor their content towards what their sponsor's target audience is likely to be, and often follow suit in what is deemed a hit story, at the expense of other noteworthy but underreported possible leads.

Part III: Media Representations of the Social… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Media and Society" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Media and Society.  (2008, May 14).  Retrieved September 19, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Media and Society."  14 May 2008.  Web.  19 September 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Media and Society."  May 14, 2008.  Accessed September 19, 2020.