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Mass Media Responsibility in Its Influence on Ideas

In: Social Issues

Submitted By jojochewchew
Words 842
Pages 4
Mass media has a huge responsibility to the public in the way it influences and shapes people’s ideas. The more the audience interacts with mass media the greater the influence it has on the viewer’s ideals. Living in a socially and technically evolving society means that like Mass Media, what we deem socially acceptable in terms of sexual roles/ identities or even body image has also changed (Silverstein, B. 1986). Mass media acts as an authority that creates a frame work for its audience to perceive reality, using this we can see how manipulation occurs through simple advertising campaigns.
The more we interact with media, the more accepting we are of the social reality presented (Gauntlett, D.2008). We want to believe our reality is ‘objective’ when in fact it is ‘subjective’ (McQuail, D. 2010). McQuail argues that our perspective is our reality; Jeffres expands upon this by explaining that mass media acts as an “authority to provide us with an interpretation of reality, explanation, personal opinions and even instructions on how to understand it” (Jeffres, L.W. 2001). Gauntlett believes that on a subconscious level, we seek such an authority to provide us with a framework to perceive reality. Through advertising we see that mass media has the ability to manipulate its audience. Advertising utilises many psychological principals based on research and depending on its target audience, persuades viewers into believing they ‘must’ have the product advertised. A great amount of resources are invested for that purpose as Gauntlett explains; by controlling ones imagination one can rule over others. It’s simplistic when we consider how tired and over worked we are in the 21st century. It’s easy for an exhausted audience to trust “the media and the information they provide” (McQuail, D. 2012).
Almost everything we are presented with is a form of advertising in some way...

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