How does Mass Media affect people in society?

Essay by jeab_jiab February 2004

download word file, 2 pages 4.7 1 reviews

So far, there're various media for people to choose and access the information such as television, radio, Internet, or even mobile phone, consequently, media have a full capacity to set a social subject for mass audience to think and talk about. Often, media do not deliberately set the agenda and determine the pros and cons of that particular issue, so it repeatedly causes bad consequences towards public as well as establishes 'moral panics', which can sometimes lead to mob violence.

The studies point that there is a correlation between violence on media and violent behavior. The reason that violent programs go well on the global market is violent imagery on television gets high ratings; therefore, producers are forced onto market to make a profit. But more significantly, television has taken the place of other forms of communication that at one time tied us together in families and communities, and gave us all the opportunity to participate in creating and passing along our cultural story.

Since mass media as crucial vehicles to influence public opinion, the government is likely to control and dominate the press and broadcasting. There was a wide range of restrictions on reporting and in many countries in the region at the time, we had a number of governments that were authoritarian governments that used press control as one of their political tools. Indonesia, China, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Burma, Laos, just to name a few; all had restrictions on their own domestic media, restrictions on foreign journalists working within those countries, and restrictions on what news could be sent out. As example in Malaysia, during the government of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, authorities controlled all major newspapers and broadcast outlets, ensuring a substantial degree of official influence over news published in the country. The only exception was...