ZeePedia Add to Favourites   |   Contact us


Introduction to Mass Communication

<<< Previous CRITICISM ON MEDIA:Sensationalize, Biasness, Private life, obscenity Next >>>
 
img
Introduction to Mass Communication ­ MCM 101
VU
LESSON 44
CRITICISM ON MEDIA
Mass media has been having its influence on societies in a number of ways. Due to its colossal
impact in shaping up the society it at the same time faces severe criticism from all around. People who resist
change in lifestyle and social norms are not seeing the mass media as doing more service to society as it is
proving destructive.
In previous chapters we have studied how the media has been beneficial in pushing up economic activities,
boosting literacy and bringing about political awareness and democracy. Here below we will examine what
areas of mass communication are target of general criticism.
Conceals more than it reveals
The foremost charge on the media, especially the news media, is that it only tells people half-truth.
Better part of a story is falling victim to gate-keepers or those who filter facts before passing them on to
common people. At crisis times like wars or political chaos media only tells facts which the interest groups
want to appear before masses. Media hardly believe, or make an effort, to tell the whole truth about any
matter of general interest. Leaving people guessing about the untold part of the story is tantamount to
serious offense.
Exaggerates
It has become a habit of media to blow up out of proportion some issues of sensitive nature which
creates so much panic among the people (authorities) who than instead finding a lasting solution of those
issues just try to hush up the matters. Government departments and many other agencies which counter
these situations frequently are finding no way out to stop media from doing so.
Sensationalize
Perhaps the most commonly leveled charge against media is its chronic approach to sensationalize
matters of routine life. In a murder story the media would go to find some juicy thing out of nothing. A
small tip from any person around may make a media person to build a spicy story which may attract
common people. More than often, the facts on which media build story prove wrong by later investigations.
Film world and leading sportspersons are always worried as media would quickly fabricate a story on finding
a small bit of something like shaking hands with certain people by a film star; - think if a top police officer
inviting a noted film personality over a cup of tea ­ a storm is likely to be made in the media.
Damages cultural and family traditions
The way certain things appear in the mass media is seen a direct attack on peoples' lifestyle, belief
and normal social life. Bold pictures of women in the name of esthetics, out of proportion images of
sportspersons ­ again women especially, behaviour of characters in a radio or TV drama, dances in films
and smoking and drinking actions ­ all have invited severe disapproval of common people who strongly
argue that such an attitude of media is hurting the cultural norms and the family set up. As a result people
do not allow certain TV channels be tuned, or some magazines to be dropped at their homes. Certain music
is not liked to be played at family gatherings and there is always uproar when an offensive or bold billboard
appears on a busy thoroughfare.
Biasness
Media bias at times is too clear to be ignored. Siding with political parties, or showing despise to
certain government functionaries, at times persons like ministers ­ is a common sight. But it works both
sides; the government controlled media in all the countries show a visible tilt towards the government while
giving a bashing to the opposition and on the other hand private sector media ­ newspapers and TV
channels, remain occupies to lash out at the government actions and allowing the opposition to drag
matters in the public which should have been talked about in the parliament. The media bias some time is
visible on regional, ethnic and linguistic grounds only damaging a society rather than bringing people closer.
Sold to interest groups
147
img
Introduction to Mass Communication ­ MCM 101
VU
This is generally done covertly. Media is under fire all across the world for selling space to interest
groups-political people in the developing countries and the economic interests in the advanced countries.
Commercialism-trend is to mislead people
Although it is little modern phenomenon, media is largely considering its commercial interest more
than what common people expect from it on pure professional ground. With huge money given to media
by way of, generally speaking, advertisements are one way of molding media in the favour of rich. Media
can't openly say against individuals and corporate sector even if a scam of billions of rupees (and dollars)
takes place. Land grabbers, tax evaders and the ones misappropriating authority can easily gag media with
currency wads.
Pictures of killings ­ unethical
True it may be but sometime revealing a fact in an ugly manners leave a bad taste in the mouth of
many. Large part of media blatantly refutes to follow ethics which may cause intense pain to common
people. At the time of breakfast when you are starting the day, if you find body of a slain person dipped in a
pool of blood is enough to haunt you all day at your working place. Not only this, some headlines which
describe a crime in most horrible way also leave a mark on your mind which remains occupied by the ugly
side of the event which could have been easily avoided had media followed professional way of putting
forward the matter.
Private life, obscenity
All people, including the ones living in hall-of-fame have a private life. Media for its personal
interest keep peeping into the private life affairs of famous people and report matters to public which may
ruin life of the stars. Female coming at the top of show biz are the most-hunted target. Media does not
hesitate in playing up their images which look highly offensive if put on newspapers or magazines pages, no
matter those poses were meant for a momentary demand for certain actions during a shoot of feature films
or even a commercial camerawork.
Blackmails governments
Media is blamed for blackmailing even strongest of governments. At times autocratic governments
find no way but get blackmailed by popular media. Little wonder if there is a general perception that media
stand for arm-twisting of people who are at the helm of political or financial authority.
148
Table of Contents:
  1. MASS COMMUNICATION AN OVERVIEW:Relationships, Power
  2. EARLY MASS COMMUNICATION AND PRINTING TECHNOLOGY
  3. SEVEN CENTURIES OF MASS COMMUNICATION FROM PRINTING TO COMPUTER
  4. ELEMENTS OF COMMUNICATION AND EARLY COMMUNICATION MODELS
  5. COMMUNICATION MODELS GRAPHIC PRESENTATION OF COMPLEX ISSUES
  6. TYPES AND FORMS OF COMMUNICATION:Inter personal, Combination
  7. MESSAGE ROOT OF COMMUNICATION I:VERBAL MESSAGE, Static Evaluation
  8. MESSAGE ROOT OF COMMUNICATION II:Conflicts, Brevity of Message
  9. EFFECTS OF COMMUNICATION:Helping Out Others, Relaxation
  10. COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE:Enculturation, Acculturation
  11. LANGUAGE IN COMMUNICATION:Polarization, Labeling, Static meanings
  12. STEREOTYPING A TYPICAL HURDLE IN MASS COMMUNICATION:Stereotype Groups
  13. MASS MEDIA HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE:Early analysis on manuscripts
  14. EMERGENCE OF PRINT MEDIA AROUND THE WORLD:Colonial journalism
  15. TELEGRAPH DOES MIRACLE IN DISTANCE COMMUNICATION TELEX AND TELEPHONE ENTHRALL PRINT COMMUNICATION
  16. TYPES OF PRINT MEDIA:Newspapers, Magazines, Books
  17. PRESS FREEDOM, LAWS AND ETHICS NEW DEBATE RAGING STILL HARD
  18. INDUSTRIALIZATION OF PRINT PROCESSES:Lithography, Offset printing
  19. EFFECTS OF PRINT MEDIA ON SOCIETY:Economic ideas, Politics
  20. ADVERTISING HAND IN HAND WITH MEDIA:Historical background
  21. RENAISSANCE AND SCIENTIFIC REVOLUTION: ROLE OF PRINT MEDIA:Science
  22. RECAP:Elements of communication, Books, Printing, Verbal Message
  23. MEDIA MANAGEMENT:Division, Business section, Press
  24. IMAGES IN MASS COMMUNICATION INVENTION OF PHOTOGRAPHY:Portrait photography
  25. MOTION PICTURES A NEW WAY IN MASS COMMUNICATION-I:Definition
  26. MOTION PICTURES A NEW WAY IN MASS COMMUNICATION (Cont...):Post-Studio Era
  27. FILM MEDIA IN SUBCONTINENT AND PAKISTAN-I:Accusations of plagiarism
  28. FILM MEDIA IN SUBCONTINENT AND PAKISTAN (II) & ITS EFFECTS:First Color film
  29. PROPAGANDA:Types in another manner, Propaganda in revolutions
  30. RADIO A BREAKTHROUGH IN MASS COMMUNICATION:What to broadcast
  31. EFFECTS OF RADIO ON SOCIETY:Entertainment, Information, Jobs
  32. TELEVISION A NEW DIMENSION IN MASS COMMUNICATION:Early Discoveries
  33. TV IN PAKISTAN:Enthusiasm, Live Broadcast, PTV goes colored
  34. EFFECTS OF TELEVISION ON SOCIETY:Seeing is believing, Fashion
  35. PUBLIC RELATIONS AND MASS COMMUNICATION - I:History, Case Study
  36. PUBLIC RELATIONS AND MASS COMMUNICATION - II:Audience targeting
  37. ADVERTISING BEYOND PRINT MEDIA:Covert advertising
  38. IMPACT OF ADVERTISING:Trial, Continuity, Brand Switching, Market Share
  39. MEDIA THEORIES:Libertarian Theory, Social Responsibility Theory
  40. NEW MEDIA IN MASS COMMUNICATION:Technology forcing changes
  41. GLOBALIZATION OF MEDIA:Media and consumerism, Media centralization
  42. MEDIA MERGENCE:Radio, TV mergence, Economic reasons
  43. MASS MEDIA IN PRESENT AGE:Magazine, Radio, TV
  44. CRITICISM ON MEDIA:Sensationalize, Biasness, Private life, obscenity
  45. RECAP:Legends of South Asian Film Industry, Radio, Television, PTV goes colored