How The Media Portrays The Occupy Wall Street Movement

1041 words - 4 pages

The fact that media can influence politics is readily evident from the campaign trail, to the passing of laws, to grass roots campaigns such as Occupy Wall Street. The Occupy Wall Street campaign has been portrayed negatively by the mainstream media outlets. Newspapers, radio, television, and the internet have painted the movement with offensive undertones, reporting the lows of the movement rather than the revolutionary aspects of the movement. A possible reason that the media has consistently framed this movement in a negative manner is that the movement is operating against the forces of society. This opposing issue between the rich conservative mass media and the Occupy Wall Street movement has drawn the interest of the public from all walks to life to witness the song and dance being framed against the Occupiers. Who is winning this dance off? An examination of the facts will reveal how well this framing is influencing the political forces.
The four forces of socialization, or how an audience, technology, the media industry and the product of the various media outlets react in the social world and the social construction of reality or the power to influence have concentrated on the Occupy Wall Street (Croteau, Hoynes, & Milan, 2012). Audiences have tuned into this movement since the first protest in September of 2011 (Occupy Wall Street, 2011). Protestors have been painted as “a motley collection of punks, anarchists, socialists, hackers, liberals, and artists” (Scherer, 2011, p. 22). A report by CNN (2011) stereotyped the protestors as hypocrites, because they have recently occupied an office near Wall Street, with a copier and furnishings, instead of the parks they had formerly protested from. An Occupy rep responded that the items, including the office, had been donated so their work could continue, but that truth was quickly brushed over and the reporter was on to the next ironic point, that there is no leader to the movement (CNN). These examples show how media outlets plant ideas into the audience through subtle means, to get a reaction, in this case a negative one. The CNN report also made sure to reveal that Occupy Wall Street had a board to monitor the media’s reports of the movement. Even though the reporter joked about it, the audience may wonder why the media (conservative majority) needs to be monitored by this minority group. It is the cleverly planted, subtle seeds of doubt, so to speak, that creep in to create disfavor from the political parties and general public which frame this movement.
Media in all its forms and various technological formats have followed this movement. Occupiers themselves have used their mobile devices, the internet, e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites to advance the movement in addition to face to face discussions (Occupy Wall Street, 2011). In response to this wide use of technology, individuals from all over the nation as well as from several countries...

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