Assess The Role Of The Media

850 words - 3 pages

What is the actual role of the media? Television, newspapers, radio and internet are all forms of media that are used by politicians to put news and views across. The question that is raised however is, what is the media's role within the political field which leads onto a question of influence. The Sun ran the headline "If Kinnock wins today will the last person to leave Britain please turn out the lights" (1992, p1), two day later it ran the headline 'It's The Sun wot won it' (1992, p1). This then makes us think that maybe the media and politicians see each other's roles differently. So in assessing the media role I think we must first look at the relationships between the two factions. When looking at the media there are also a few sociological theories which I believe to be relevant.So then to assess the media's role I believe that a brief look at the relationship between the two is necessary. The relationship then between the media and politicians according to Daniel Chandler, 'The media and politicians have a love/hate relationship'. This is due to the fact that the politicians require the media to spread the word about their work. However this is also a relationship where the media requires politicians to satisfy the audiences' interests of political issues ranging from results of general elections to every day political opinions regarding current events such as the terrorist attacks in Pakistan recently. There is also a belief within the political camp that the way the media portrays events is to their own beliefs. This is especially seen with newspapers. The Sun for instance was clearly a supporter of the conservative party, however roughly in 1997 with the emergence of new labour.The media's main role therefore in politics is to pass on to the audiences' news to keep the public up to date. This is does via various forms of media but the way in which they are put over can be co-ordinated with the sociological theory, the hypodermic syringe. This can also be referred to, after Schramm, as the Silver Bullet Model (1982), this is the idea that the mass media are so powerful that they can 'inject' their messages into the audience, or that, like a magic bullet, they can be precisely targeted at an audience, who irresistibly fall down when hit by the bullet. In brief, it is the idea that the makers of media messages can get us to do whatever they want us to do. I believe this is one of the roles that the media play because it can be as...

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