The Sociology of News by Michael Schudson Sneha Subhedar, DMM, Ruia 07/10/11 Sneha Subhedar, Co-ordinator, DMM, Ramanarian Ruia College
Sneha Subhedar, DMM, Ruia 07/10/11 Sociology of news Defining journalism, Does news matter, media bias, where news came from, the problems of news in our day News in the market place, News sources, Political culture of news Audience of news News as literature and narrative Law, democracy and news
A sociological understanding of journalism should comprehend the blend of chance and intention, normality and catastrophe, instrument and accident, expectation and surprise, narrative and interjection that makes up the news.
Frames in the media are principles of selection, emphasis and presentation composed of little-implied theories about what exists, what happens and what matters.
A theoretical assumption on framing of bias reveals that the decision inherent in the manufacture of news have more to do with the marketplace, the nature of organisations and the assumptions of news professionals than with individual bias.
What’s important to keep in mind is that the influence of news is cultural.
It can relay a certain body of information and a set of attitudes towards that information to people who are open to receiving it, but it cannot reward or punish the audience for taking the information to heart
This does not make news unimportant
It simply makes the news a subtle, cultural influence on human affairs, not an overt force controlling society
The issue of market driven censorship, rather than state censorship, is made urgent by troubling evidence that news judgment is growing less and less protected from commercial concerns across the globe
The other trend is the move from family ownership to publicly traded corporation, i.e. local ownership to chain or group ownership.
These owners keep moving the top management from city to city as they wish, making it plain that the editors are beholden more to the national organisation than to the newspaper’s local community.
The influence of this pattern of ownership is not clear, but it is widely believed that these chains can harm the news product by a more rigid commitment to high profit margins than independent papers typically have.
Studies of sociology of news tend to view news making as a reality constructing activity governed by the elites.
A study showed that the world is bureaucratically organised for the journalists. i.e. the organisations of the beats is such that the reporters get the largest share of their news from official government agencies.
W. Lance Bennett calls this phenomenon ‘indexing’ function of the press.
He adds, that the media ‘tend to index’ the range of voices and viewpoints in both the news and editorials according to the range of views expressed in mainstream government debate about a given topic.