Studying media Essay

This essay has a total of 1109 words and 5 pages.

studying media

Much of what we know about the world, beyond our immediate experience, comes to us through
the media. Media studies gives us the tools to respond thoughtfully and critically to
media content, and recognise media productions as deliberate constructions rather than
windows on reality.

The ‘mediated' society in which we live, is heavily shaped by the transfer of
information. Many of our values, our ideas, and our knowledge of the world come from
beyond our individual daily or immediate experience, usually via the media.

They play a vital role in democracy, shaping citizens\' understanding of social and
political issues and functioning as gatekeepers through which issues, and events must be
passed. By studying the media, and understanding the implications of mass communication,
we are able to develop an understanding of how things work, how people become informed,
and misinformed, and how the myths and ideologies that govern all of our lives are created
and sustained.

The media are an important part of our lives for many reasons. Primarily, they help to
keep us informed about current affairs, both in the world at large and on the home front.
The media are a central part of our lives. Think about how much time we spend being
‘exposed' to their product's everyday and how many different ways it can be used.
Everyday, we use the media for information and perhaps less willingly, we also accept the
media as a source of persuasion, most notably through advertising.

Another way in which media represents an important part of our lives is through the
influence and power they hold in society. Although it is not always clear what influence
is held or whether it is good or bad, the media are often blamed for many of the problems
in today's society, most commonly with reference to the portrayal of violence. There are a
disturbingly large number of cases in which the perpetrator of a violent crime has cited a
relationship to the media, and in some cases has admitted to imitating a character or
scene from a film.

Though the media are a prevalent part of our lives, we need to recognise that there are
other influences that are as strong, or even stronger. Family, education, religion, and
peer groups all help to shape our ideas, values, beliefs and behavior. Whilst it is
generally accepted that Hollywood films may desensitise children to the consequences of
violence, we should be careful when attempting to make correlations between exposure to
media violence and imitation as it overstates the power of the image and under-estimates
the role of parents.

Finally, to understand the importance of the media in our everyday world, we have to
recognise that first and foremost, media companies and organisations exist to make a
profit. Films and newspapers are not produced purely to entertain and inform us, they are
made because the media corporations know that they will make large amounts of money. In
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