Here are a few of the pros and cons. Before mass media, you could live your entire life knowing nothing about the world outside of your village. Now, we are all connected. And this can be a very good thing. For instance, when a tsunami strikes, people all over the world hear about it within moments and can mobilize immediately to help. Where would business be without advertising and marketing?
Thanks to the business communication made possible by mass media, businesses can reach potential consumers faster and easier than ever before.
This helps keep our economy going. In addition, numerous TV and radio programs devote themselves to exploring the world, offering us the chance to discover new things and new ideas, and enlighten ourselves in the process. While mass media can create opportunities for anyone to share their story, the vast majority of our mass media is bought. This gives the rich—and those connected to the rich—a far louder voice than the rest of us.
At its best, this is unfair. While some sources of information are far more trustworthy than others, mass media as a whole is vulnerable to propaganda and its lies. Totalitarian regimes have used mass media for nearly a century to control what their people believe. With the rise of the internet, even those in democracies can be easily exposed to media designed to drive us to hate or believe in lies.
Before mass media, art and culture were more localized, so they reflected diversity in how people spoke, dressed, and entertained themselves. Now, the entire world often sees and hears the same cultural influences. While diversity still clearly exists, there is the risk that mass media might reduce cultural variety, leaving us with less art and fewer inspirations. Additionally, television usually does not show the realism of violence and how things would turn out in real life for a person who has committed a crime such as stealing or murder.
Such messages may seem to be acceptable by viewers, especially children, and make them think that it is all right to follow such aggressive model behaviors. Researchers, who take an interest in media violence, especially televised violence, and in how it influences children, have put forward four findings:.
The first and perhaps most important factor is observational learning, which refers to the process through which people learn to imitate role models and types of behavior, especially if the behavior is perceived as being rewarded. This process seems to be at work not only in the imitation of televised aggression among children, but also in the influence of highly publicized murders, suicides, and prize fights among adults.
The second factor is the change in attitudes that often occurs through television viewing.
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Studies have shown that children who watch substantial amounts of television are more likely than less avid viewers to accept aggressive behavior in other children. Other research suggests that violence on television can cultivate attitudes of suspicion and images of an extremely violent world in the minds of its viewers.
A third possible factor is physiological arousal, the idea that viewers are stimulated by observing violence, to which they may nevertheless become desensitized over time, and that this arousal leads to, or is maintained by, subsequent aggressive activity. The fourth factor involves the process of justification. Many people who watch televised violence may already engage in violent behavior or possess aggressive tendencies, and may then find in television a form of justification for their actions.
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Ruben and Todd Hunt, Mass Communication. Looking at the above findings it can be concluded that violence in media has a huge effect on children, as well as on adults. But let us not jump to conclusions and take a closer look at these situations and interpret them with greater attention to detail and with reference to facts.
A single conclusion has not been reached, but enough data has been gathered to give attention to many important facts. Researchers have been investigating the effects of mass media through two leading approaches:. The survey is carried out in the real world and usually consists of a large group of individuals who answer questions put to them via a questionnaire… A special kind of survey, a panel survey, allows researchers to be more confident about attributing patterns of cause and effect in survey data. The panel study collects data from the same people at two or more different points in time.
As a result, it is possible, using sophisticated techniques that control the effects of other variables, to see if viewing televised violence at an early age is related to aggressive behavior at a later date. The experiment is performed in a laboratory and usually consists of the controlled manipulation of a single factor to determine its impact on another factor. A special kind of experiment, a field experiment, is conducted in a real-life setting.
Field experiments are more realistic than laboratory experiments but they are also harder to control. Media violence has not just been a concern of parents, researchers and psychologists, but also of government. All the studies that have been conducted over the years have been done so through laboratory experiments and field studies.
Dominick, The Dynamics of Mass Communication; 3rd ed. Researchers have divided these children into two equal groups. The research focused on children watching television, in this case cartoons and their behavior afterwards. One of the groups watched an episode of Woody Woodpecker, which contained violent acts, and the other watched an episode of The Little Red Hen, which was free of violence. Afterwards all 24 children were taken into the same room to play.
The researchers have noticed that boys and girls, who have seen, Woody Woodpecker, acted more violently than children that have seen the non-violent one. Children who have seen an episode of Woody Woodpecker were more violent toward other children and were the ones to break things.
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The article Research on the Effects of Media Violence mentions, Jeffrey Johnson, a professor at the University of Columbia, who for 17 years has observed different families in upstate New York. He started in and concluded his studies in As a result he declared that boys and girls who were exposed to a few hours of television on daily basis were more likely to be aggressive as adults.
He stated that 60 percent of those children were more likely to get into fights and be aggressive toward others. Two methods, laboratory experiments and field studies, were used in those studies. The person performing the behavior is known as the model, and the learner is known as the observer. According to Dominick, the best known observational learning researcher is Albert Bandura and his experiment with a rubber doll called Bobo doll. Children who have seen the film and were placed in the same situation with the rubber doll acted quite more violently towards the doll than those children who have not seen the film before.
In recent years a similar experiment has been conducted except this time a human being dressed as a clown took over the role of the rubber doll. A large number of children attacked the clown with aggression although it was a smaller number than in the case of the rubber doll. However, this only pertains to the children who have seen the film. Those who have not seen it did not take up such actions.
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It has also been concluded from this experiment that children who were given a prize for being aggressive and who saw that the people in the movie were also being rewarded for it were far more violent. They want to be and act alike because they think it is acceptable to do so. Through media showcase their talents such as comedy, acting and singing.
Children can learn from quiz programs, animal programs and so on. Serves as a good source of entertainment. People get entertained through music and television programs. Television allows electronic duplication of information. This reduces the production cost making mass education possible.
It leads to individualism. People spend too much time on the internet and watching television.
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As a result, socialization with friends, family and neighbors is affected. Some media contents are not suitable for children. Media can be addictive, e.