Does the Media Assist in a Thriving Democracy?
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This paper analyzes journalism, contemporary news reporting, entertainment, online media and the public sphere, to argue that the media plays a double-edged sword in democracy. The paper discusses and offers examples to show how the media can either help or hinder democracy, and notes how current trends in the industry will make it significantly harder for the media to continue its great role in democracy. Ultimately, the paper highlights how it is up to citizens to determine the role of the media by choosing whether to actively engage with it or leave it as is.
From the Paper:"Democracy involves citizens to actively participate in politics and civic life, equally and fairly (Curran, 2011). The democratic process itself assumes that every citizen has the capacity to engage in politics and to hold elected officials accountable so that power is equally and fairly distributed - in theory (Curran, 2011). In practice, political accountability require a variety of processes including regular and free elections, the presence of diverse political parties and of course, a media system that "provides meaningful public affairs information" (Curran, Iyengar, Lund & Salovaara-Moring, 2009, p. 2) to inform and incite citizens to participate in the public affairs.
"In present times however, the news media is becoming more commercialised and entertainment-focused. The current news cycle is largely dedicated to the "soft news" of celebrities, sport and other entertainment-centred information as opposed to "hard news" where issues of public interest are highlighted (Curran, 2009; 2011; McChesney, 2008; Turner, 2004). With the rise of neoliberalism since the Cold War, which emphasised the deregulation of market forces, there is an increasing lack of meaningful public affairs information to the public (Fenton ,2011). A prime example of this can be seen in America; where market forces are significantly unregulated with minimal interference from the state. America's media ownership is extensively in private hands, with public service television accounting for less than two percent of audience share (Iyengar & McGrady, 2007)."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Bennett, W. L. (1988). News. Longman.
- Buckingham, D. (2000). Conclusion: News, education and citizenship. The making of citizens: Young people, news and politics. London: Routledge, pp. 201-223.
- Buncombe. A (2007) 'US military tells Jack Bauer....or else!" Independent , Feburary 13, 2007. < http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-military-tells-jack-bauer-cut-out-the-torture-scenes--or-else-436143.html>
- Croteau, D., Hoynes, W. & Milan, S. (2012). Media/society: Industries, images and audiences. (4th Ed). Sage
- Curran, J., Iyengar, S., Lund, A. B., & Salovaara-Moring, I. (2009). Media System, Public Knowledge and Democracy A Comparative Study. European Journal of Communication, 24(1), 5-26.
Cite this Analytical Essay:
Does the Media Assist in a Thriving Democracy? (2013, June 27) Retrieved July 31, 2014, from http://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/does-the-media-assist-in-a-thriving-democracy-153581/
"Does the Media Assist in a Thriving Democracy?" 27 June 2013. Web. 31 July. 2014. <http://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/does-the-media-assist-in-a-thriving-democracy-153581/>