Media is one of the world’s power and force that can not be undermined. Media has a remarkable control in almost every aspect of our lives; in politics, social and cultural or economic welfares. Perhaps the best analysis of the impact that media has played in the society is through first acknowledging its role in information flow and circulation. It is would be unjust to overlook the importance of information to the society.
Information is the significant to the society in the sense that, all that happens in the society must be channeled and communicated among the society’s habitats. Without media, the habitats or else the population will be left clueless on what is happening or what is ought to happen. From another perspective, the society benefits from the media in a number of ways and as well it derives a lot of misfortunes from the society. However, regardless of the impact that is made by media on the society, the media remains to be one of the strongest forces that influence the pillars of the society. This essay paper highlights the impacts that media has continued to assert on the society either in a positive or in a negative manner.
Role of media in the society
The most common role that media has played in the society has been; to inform people, to educate people and sometimes to offer leisure or entertainment. The role of media in the society is stretched back in the ancient traditions when, there were approaches on which media role in the society was perceived.
Some of these approaches included a positive approach, critical approach, production approach, technological approach, information approach and finally a post colonial approach. A positivist approach assumed that media’s role in the society was to achieve predetermined objectives of the society, usually from a beneficial perspective. The critical approach assumes that media is pertinent can be used in struggle for power and other issues in the society that were preceded by a spark of a new or old ideology. The production approach is that media plays a greater role in society by providing a new experience of reality to the masses by providing an avenue of new perceptions and visions. The information approach assumes that the key role of media in the society is to provide information channels for the benefit of the society (Fourie178).
Impact of media on society
With the above roles being achieved in one of the most remarkable means over centuries, media has some solid impacts that have been imprinted on the society. Some of these impacts and effects are to remain for ever as long as media existence will remain while others require control and monitoring due to their negative effects on the society. The best approach to look at this is by first describing the positive impacts that media has had on the society (Fourie 25).
The development of media and advancement of mass media is such positive impact that media has accomplished in recent times. It has been proven that mass communication has influenced social foundation and governments to means that only can be termed pro-social (Preiss 485). An example of such can be use of mass media in campaigns to eradicate HIV and AIDS in the society.
Mass communication through media avenues such as the internet, television and radio has seen great co-operation of government, government agencies, non-government organizations, private corporations and the public in what is seen as key society players in mutual efforts towards constructing better society. In this context, media has contributed to awareness, education of the society and better governance of the society. Were it not for media, the worlds most historical moments would probably be forgotten today especially in the manner they reshape our contemporary society in matters regarding politics, economics and culture (Fourie 58). However, media has had its shortcomings that have negative influence on the society. These negatives if not counterchecked or controlled will continue to ruin the values and morals of a society that once treasured morality and value of information.
These negative impacts include: media has contributed to immense exposure of violence and antisocial acts from media program that are aimed at entertaining the public. Media roles in the society have been reversed by merely assuming a role of society visibility thus controlling the society rather than being controlled by society. Media has continued to use biased tactics to attract society attention and thus having a negative impact on the society’s culture due to stereotyping of other cultures.
Media has continued to target vulnerable groups in the society such as children and youths be exposing them to pornographic materials that has sexual immorality consequence on the society’s young generations. It is through such shortcomings that the cognitive behavior’s which shape the moral fiber of the society gets threatened by media (Berger 106). However, regardless of the impacts of the media on the society, the future of the media will evolve with time and its role in the society will unlikely fade.
Berger, Arthur. Media and society: a critical perspective. Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield. 2007 Fourie, Pieter. Media studies: media history, media and society.
Cape Town: Juta and company ltd. 2008 Preiss, Raymond. Mass media effects research: advances through meta-analysis. New York: Routledge. 2007