Which combination of media sources is most capable of delivering democratically relevant news to citizens?

Essay by pjchungCollege, Undergraduate November 2008

download word file, 5 pages 3.0

Downloaded 16 times

Media plays a prominent role in democracy as the main information pathway to citizens. In order for a democracy to be functional, the citizens must be aware of the issues in order for their votes to be meaningful. Consistent with capitalistic societies, the main form of media are corporate, profit-driven enterprises. However, the government also funds public media sources. In this paper, we look to investigate which combination of media sources is most capable of delivering democratically relevant news to citizens.

The first main camp asserts that corporations are inherently deceitful and biased when it comes to democratically relevant news. Therefore, public media is necessary to effectively cover all sides of an issue. The second camp to the contrary, asserts that commercial media is capable of covering the various sides of an issue. Though no single source may necessarily be able to be unbiased, the combinations of different commercial sources can give a whole view of an issue.

Moyers' view of irresponsible journalism from corporations and McChesney's belief that corporations thrive on the apathy of the people align with the first camp. Jones' evaluation of the daily show as a viable, relevant news source and Jonnson's and Ornebring's view of tabloids as a valuable emotionally appealing to the character of politicians align with the second camp. Paine, though not directly addressing the issue of media, would align with the first camp since he used an anonymous article, a form of public media, to relay his message to the American people.

Thomas Paine does not directly address the issue of public and corporate media in Common Sense, but we can still infer his view based on the method by which he delivered his historic essay. Paine called for the American revolution by publishing Common Sense anonymously. Paine used an anonymous message...