Theories of Mass Media
. Link between the political society and mass media was first explained by the
The Authoritarian Theory
. Direct governmental control of mass media
. Media are not allowed to print or broadcast anything, which could
undermine, the established authority, and offense to the existing political
values is avoided.
. The Government may go to the step of punishing anyone who questions
the state’s ideology.
. It says that government is infallible.
. Media professionals are therefore not allowed any independence with the
The Libertarian Theory
This theory is also called free press theory
This was the contrast which rests on the idea that the individual should be
free to publish whatever he or she likes.
century’s thinker John Milton, who asserted that human beings
inevitably choose the best ideas and values.
The attack on the governments are fully accepted and even encouraged.
No restriction on import or export of media messages across the national
Journalists and media professionals ought to have full autonomy within the
The Soviet Theory
Theory linked with socialist countries in a communist ideology.
The origins of the socialistic thought in 1917 Russian revolution based on
the concepts evolved by Marx and Engels.
There is no private ownership of media organization under this system.
Responsible to serve the interest of working class.
This theory apparently similar to the authoritarian theory.
The element of self regulatory mechanism and character of responsibility
makes different of the authoritarian.
after the fall of the soviet union we can find the best example of this model
in China where television, radio and newspapers are under total control of the
The Social Responsibility Theory
This is the American initiative in the late forties.
In this model media assigned to perform some obligation towards society.
- Objectivity and balance
Media cannot function in a vacuum. It has connectivity with the political
system and people subjected to it.
Media and society are independent and mutually influential
Media shapes the society and gets shaped by society.
In a democratic society, media has definite prime objective to inform people
and act as an opinian leader. More practical and relevant in democratic world