The media: masters or servants?

FloatingVoterTralee

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This is a question that will never be satisfactorily answered, but do the media reflect public opinion or act as shapers of the social agenda? As people become better-educated, they also develop greater awareness of media techniques, and in the UK especially, they consume outlets that reflect their own sociopolitical position, but do they passively subscribe to the tenets of their favoured organ, or actively alter the editorial direction through interaction. Then there is the issue of whether the news agenda reflects impartial concerns or a set of predetermined values - e.g. Tibet tends to be a regular top in the world news section, whereas conflicts in DR Congo and Western Sahara have been largely ignored.

McLuhan would have had a field day with the internet, as it should alter the relationship between producer and consumer, but if everyone can produce news, what parameters can be used to determine worthiness? Also, the controls implemented by China, North Korea, Iran etc. suggests early predictions that the web would largely eliminate censorship were ill-founded.
 


Tea Party Patriot

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I defiantly think that much of the media has moved towards specialisation for different political tastes.

If you look at the U.S. you have CNN for Democrats and Fox for Republicans, in the UK it is similar between BBC (Labour) and Sky (Tories).

Ireland is probably too small to see this in televised media, however you do have a clear divide between the Irish Times and the Independent when it comes to left and right on politics.

I think on the issue of whether they passively subscribe to the tenets of their favoured organ, or actively alter the editorial direction you probably get a bit of both. Most of those who subscribe to these would do so passively keeping abreast of the news from their own point of view, however I do think that within the socio economic group this media still has the ability to shape who will emerge as the potential leaders of its socio economic following, and can be an effective ally to have onside in regards to that.

It can also offer a good platform in which to test the reaction of a socio economic grouping to a slight change of direction the leadership might be seeking, by slipping in a few articles promoting it and monitoring the response. If satisfied with an initial response more articles could follow in order to shape the mindset (sounds very Machiavellian, but still plausible).

However in western society the internet also has the power to influence outside the mainstream. Pamella Gellar, who is nothing more than a blogger, for instance is having a significant influence on the America attitude towards Islam which certainly would not be endorsed by any main stream media. In fact her blog was responsible for Campbells soup recently dropping it’s Hal Al brand in the U.S. and Canada.

Indy media seems to be able to have an effect in setting the flavour of the day for the radical left, again promoting many issues you are not going to see endorsed in the Irish Times.

On the question of the web eliminating censorship, well you need an ISP in order to access it. If your ISP is state controlled then it is difficult for you to get to sites not endorsed by an oppressive regime, and if it records your hits then even the ones they are not aware of are open to monitoring. However I do believe that the high usage of internet café's in places like china could also be linked to issues other than computer ownership. For instance if you access a site that isn't banned officially by the government but is likely to be you would have relative anonymity in doing so, perhaps finding away around being marked out for reading banned material. So maybe full censorship isn’t possible because of the internet.
 

Cael

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The media promotes the interests of its owners. Full stop.
 

TaxHavenSite

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I defiantly think that much of the media has moved towards specialisation for different political tastes.

If you look at the U.S. you have CNN for Democrats and Fox for Republicans, in the UK it is similar between BBC (Labour) and Sky (Tories).

Ireland is probably too small to see this in televised media, however you do have a clear divide between the Irish Times and the Independent when it comes to left and right on politics.

I think on the issue of whether they passively subscribe to the tenets of their favoured organ, or actively alter the editorial direction you probably get a bit of both. Most of those who subscribe to these would do so passively keeping abreast of the news from their own point of view, however I do think that within the socio economic group this media still has the ability to shape who will emerge as the potential leaders of its socio economic following, and can be an effective ally to have onside in regards to that.

It can also offer a good platform in which to test the reaction of a socio economic grouping to a slight change of direction the leadership might be seeking, by slipping in a few articles promoting it and monitoring the response. If satisfied with an initial response more articles could follow in order to shape the mindset (sounds very Machiavellian, but still plausible).

However in western society the internet also has the power to influence outside the mainstream. Pamella Gellar, who is nothing more than a blogger, for instance is having a significant influence on the America attitude towards Islam which certainly would not be endorsed by any main stream media. In fact her blog was responsible for Campbells soup recently dropping it’s Hal Al brand in the U.S. and Canada.

Indy media seems to be able to have an effect in setting the flavour of the day for the radical left, again promoting many issues you are not going to see endorsed in the Irish Times.

On the question of the web eliminating censorship, well you need an ISP in order to access it. If your ISP is state controlled then it is difficult for you to get to sites not endorsed by an oppressive regime, and if it records your hits then even the ones they are not aware of are open to monitoring. However I do believe that the high usage of internet café's in places like china could also be linked to issues other than computer ownership. For instance if you access a site that isn't banned officially by the government but is likely to be you would have relative anonymity in doing so, perhaps finding away around being marked out for reading banned material. So maybe full censorship isn’t possible because of the internet.
Using a few proxies,and changing alot prevents the government from tracking you.
 

cedissapointed

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RTE are set up to be independant of government but that doesn't mean their interests don't intermingle on occasion,i hear the last guy in charge of RTE was known for pushing through government agenda,you can research that if you want!
 

Cael

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This is how Albert Einstein put the case:

Private capital tends to become concentrated in few hands, partly because of competition among the capitalists, and partly because technological development and the increasing division of labor encourage the formation of larger units of production at the expense of smaller ones. The result of these developments is an oligarchy of private capital the enormous power of which cannot be effectively checked even by a democratically organized political society. This is true since the members of legislative bodies are selected by political parties, largely financed or otherwise influenced by private capitalists who, for all practical purposes, separate the electorate from the legislature. The consequence is that the representatives of the people do not in fact sufficiently protect the interests of the underprivileged sections of the population. Moreover, under existing conditions, private capitalists inevitably control, directly or indirectly, the main sources of information (press, radio, education). It is thus extremely difficult, and indeed in most cases quite impossible, for the individual citizen to come to objective conclusions and to make intelligent use of his political rights.

Why Socialism? Albert Einstein - Monthly Review
 

Cael

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RTE are set up to be independant of government but that doesn't mean their interests don't intermingle on occasion,i hear the last guy in charge of RTE was known for pushing through government agenda,you can research that if you want!
Given that the ruling party appoint the senour officers in RTÉ, its hardly surprising that they would be dependable yesmen.
 

richie268

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The media promotes the interests of its owners. Full stop.
Do you know your bang on because in 5mins time on RTE some pretty thing is going to demonstrate how to cook Beef Wellington and chocolate creme brulee and not a bit of cheese to be seen.
 

bormotello

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The media: masters or servants?


Loyal servants of establishment
Total ignorance of anti-NAMA protest at 12/09/09 by all irish media is a perfect example
Of coarse, establishment is not solid and has own problems, this is why it looks that media are independent
 

atlantic

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Jan 25, 2008
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RTE i s government paid and owned.Who ever pays has the say.Rte is a propaganda machine for the rotten state .Thanks bit ta god the internet came along, of course it won't be to long before they start censoring and interfering with that also.
 


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