Chapter 12 Overview - Chapter 12 Overview Introduction:...

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Chapter 12 Overview Introduction: Case Study--A New Web of Influence: Bloggers Rewrite the Rules of Journalism This chapter examines the evolution of the modern mass media, noting the impact of new technologies such as satellite transmission, cable television, and the World Wide Web. It then focuses on the content of political news coverage. Attention is devoted to the question of how journalists decide what is newsworthy. Finally, the ways in which government officials manipulate the media are evaluated. The opening case study deals with the explosion of political online diarists known as bloggers. The Emergence of the Media and Functions of the Media Today Americans can get the news from a wide variety of sources. Early Americans depended on the newspapers of the day, while later citizens became dependent on broadcast media - first radio and then television. Modern technologies, particularly satellite, cable, narrowcasting, and the Internet, have extended the reach and impact of television. In addition, the mass media today play several essential roles: surveillance, interpretation, investigation, and socialization. Limits on Media Freedom Because of the First Amendment, the newspapers are protected from government interference. The broadcasting media, on the other hand, have been regulated. These regulations have been justified on grounds of scarcity: there are only so many frequencies and the government, in granting licenses, can choose to regulate the broadcasters. So, for example, the Federal Communications Commission has required broadcasters to provide equal time and time for rebuttal. Ideological Bias and Media Control While reporters may describe themselves as liberals, there is little evidence that such an ideological bias permeates media coverage of politics. First, the media are plural; there are so many news organizations, many of which try to present more than one political viewpoint. In addition, the media "elite" are plural, consisting not only of journalists but also their more conservative editors, publishers, and owners. Finally, to the extent that reporters are dependent on government sources, they are unlikely to take a very critical stance. In the end result, any bias in the media is likely to be a pro-corporate bias rather than a liberal one. The Media and Elections
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Chapter 12 Overview - Chapter 12 Overview Introduction:...

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