Media Impact

Media Impact - Chapter 2: Media Impact Comm 100: Survey of...

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Chapter 2: Media Impact Comm 100: Survey of Communication Fields Prof. Paul Oren
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Early Studies Concerns about the impact of media are as old as the media themselves. Fifteenth-century church leaders thought printed bibles would corrupt society; many parents felt the same way about the first novels. Systematic research into these effects did not begin, however, until the 1920s. Propaganda had been so blatant and useful to both sides during WW I that people feared media was powerful enough to “brainwash” an innocent public and influence them in ways they did not realize.
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Early Studies In 1929, the Payne Fund conducted 13 separate investigations into the influence movies had on the behavior of children. People were concerned that, through a phenomenon known as modeling , children picked up antisocial habits from their movie viewing. Content analyses demonstrated that the vast majority of movies dealt with crime, sex, and love. Laboratory experiment studies, including attaching electrodes to record viewer’s skin responses and breathing patterns, found that romantic and erotic scenes did not have much effect on young children or adults but had a noticeable effect on teenagers.
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Early Studies Survey Methods included administering questionnaires to young movie viewers, and their parents and teachers, as well as asking teenagers to recall the effects that early movie viewing had on them. Results suggested that movie viewing was harmful to a child’s health, contributed to an erosion of moral standards and had a negative influence on the child’s conduct.
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Media Impact - Chapter 2: Media Impact Comm 100: Survey of...

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