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Media Problems. Media – production & broadcasting of radio, television, motion pictures, movie theatres, music companies, newspaper, magazines, books & internet services that influence people & cultures worldwide

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media problems
Media Problems
  • Media – production & broadcasting of radio, television, motion pictures, movie theatres, music companies, newspaper, magazines, books & internet services that influence people & cultures worldwide
  • The average US person spends ½ of their awake time in some media related activity, more than any other activity
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Media Problems
  • Media concentration refers to the tendency of the media industries to cluster together in groups with the goal of enhancing profitability
  • See figure 14.1 on page 308
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Media Problems

Corporate megamergers have the changed the media in these ways:

  • Concentration of ownership within one industry – 10 chains represent more than 51% of the newspapers in the US
  • Cross-media ownership – media companies own more than one type of media property
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Media Problems
  • Conglomerate ownership – a single corporation owns companies that operate in different business sectors. GE owns NBC Television Network

  • Vertical integration – the corporations control the media content
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Media Problems
  • The media industry makes $$ - see table 14.2 on page 310
  • As of 2006, the cost of a 30-second commercial on average is $2.5 million for the Super Bowl – now a cultural phenomena
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Media Problems

Six major media conglomerates worldwide

  • AOL Time Warner
  • Sony
  • Viacom
  • Disney
  • Bertelsmann
  • News Corporation
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Media Problems
  • Framing – the manner in which news content & its accompanying visual images are linked together to create certain audience perception & give specific impressions to viewers & readers (this is sometime called “spin”)

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Media Problems
  • Cathartic effect hypothesis – media offer a vicarious outlet for feelings of aggression & may reduce the amount of violence
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Media Problems

Racial/ethnic stereotyping in the media –

  • Perpetuating images that appear to be positive in nature & flattering (model minority)
  • Exaggerating the physical appearance or suggesting that people “look alike”
  • Creating characters who have undesirable attributes/attitudes
  • Using statements & images that link groups to illegal actions
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Media Problems

Gender stereotyping –

  • Connecting gender & age bias – older men & younger women are linked together
  • Perpetuating traditional roles
  • Maintaining cultural stereotypes of feminism
  • Impulsive conduct by women holding professional positions (sex & the city)
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Media Problems
  • Women in positions of power abusing their positions
  • Women overwhelmed by their work – unable to competently handle work, family, marriage – being forced to make choices
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Media Problems

Symbolic Interactionist Perspective:

  • Hypodermic needle theory – people are passive & equally susceptible
  • Theory of limited effects – media has minimal effects on the attitudes & perceptions of individuals
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Media Problems
  • Use & gratification theory – making conscious decisions about what to entertain themselves with but are aware that media has limitations
  • Social learning theory – people are likely to act out the behavior they see in role models & media sources
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Media Problems
  • Audience relations approach – people use their own cultural understandings to interpret what they hear & see in the media
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Media Problems

Functionalist perspective –

  • Media provide news & information
  • Media facilitates public discourse regarding social issues & policies
  • Media passes on cultural traditions and historical perspectives
  • Media is a source of entertainment
  • Media confers status on people/groups
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Media Problems
  • Functionalists believe that the media is dysfunctional when they contribute to a reduction in social stability or weaken social institutions
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Media Problems

Conflict perspective –

  • The capitalist class owns & controls the media with the purpose of instructing people in the values, beliefs & attitudes that they should have
  • Hegemony theory – the media is used for social control by the ruling class to create false consciousness in the working class (the idea of feeling in control when not)