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A2 media revision


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A2 media revision

  1. 1. ‘We Media’ & Democracy
  2. 2. Topic Points: • What are ‘We Media’? • Where / how has ‘We Media’ emerged? • In what way are the contemporary media more democratic than before? • In what ways are the contemporary media less democratic than before?
  3. 3. In The Exam: • Historical – dependent on the requirements of the topic, candidates must summarise the development of the media forms in question in theoretical contexts. • Contemporary – current issues within the topic area. • Future – candidates must demonstrate personal engagement with debates about the future of the media forms / issues that the topic relates to.
  4. 4. Theorists/Theories • Marxist Theory/Gramsci/Frankfurt School • Chomsky – Media Control • David Gauntlett • Dan Gillmor • Fourth Estate • Chris Anderson – The Long Tail
  5. 5. Cultural Effects: Marxist View • The dominant ideology of a society is the ideology of the dominant or ruling class • The mass media disseminates the dominant ideology: the values of the class which owns and controls the media • Notion of domination
  6. 6. Gramsci: Hegemony • The supremacy of the bourgeoisie is based on economic domination and intellectual/moral leadership • A class had succeeded in persuading the other classes of society to accept its own moral, political and cultural values • However, this consent is not always peaceful, and may combine physical force or coercion with intellectual, moral and cultural inducement The American Dream?
  7. 7. Can the working class achieve hegemony? • If the working class is to achieve hegemony, it needs patiently to build up a network of alliances with social minorities. • These new coalitions must respect the autonomy of the movement, so that each group can make its own special contribution toward a new socialist society. • The working class must unite popular democratic struggles with its own conflict against the capital class, so as to strengthen a national popular collective will.
  8. 8. The Frankfurt School Modernist Approach • Mass audience as passive and gullible • ‘hypodermic needle’ effects model • Pessimistic claims about media indoctrination • Mass culture disseminates the dominant ideology of the bourgeoisie
  9. 9. Chomsky: Manufacturing Consent • The main aim of a media company is to make money • Newspapers achieve this through advertising revenue • This has an impact on the news values and news selection • Can lead to editorial bias • News businesses that favour profit over public interest succeed
  10. 10. Chomsky: Manufacturing Consent • Further distortion through the reliance of newspapers on private and governmental news sources • If a newspaper displeases, they may no longer be privy to that source of information • They will lose out on stories, lose readers and ultimately advertisers • news media businesses editorially distort their reporting to favour government and corporate policies in order to stay in business
  11. 11. Editorial Bias: Five Filters 1. Size, Ownership, and Profit Orientation 2. The Advertising License to Do Business 3. Sourcing Mass Media News 4. Flak and the Enforcers 5. Anti-Communism
  12. 12. Size, Ownership and Profit Orientation • The dominant mass-media outlets are large corporations which are run for profit • Therefore they must cater to the financial interest of their owners
  13. 13. The Advertising License to do Business • Since the majority of the revenue of major media outlets derives from advertising advertisers have acquired a "de-facto licensing authority". • Media outlets are not commercially viable without the support of advertisers. • News media must therefore cater to the political prejudices and economic desires of their advertisers. • This has weakened the working-class press
  14. 14. Sourcing Mass Media News • The large bureaucracies of the powerful subsidise the mass media, and gain special access to the news, by their contribution to reducing the media’s costs of acquiring and producing, news. • The large entities that provide this subsidy become 'routine' news sources and have privileged access to the gates. • Non-routine sources must struggle for access, and may be ignored by the arbitrary decision of the gatekeepers
  15. 15. Concept: Fourth Estate • Is a societal or political force or institution whose influence is not consistently or officially recognised • Print Journalism • The concept that the press is an instrument of democracy providing a check on the abuse of government power • It is the myth that the press is a vital defender of the people? – think about Chomsky!
  16. 16. Editorial Bias Anyone?!
  17. 17. Concept: Fourth Estate – The Radical Press • Early 1800s the printing press became accessible to all • Radical journalists starting addressing vital issues through the press • Challenged mainstream editors • Poor Man’s Guardian linked to National Union of the working classes • Independent of established political pressure and still free from any commercial influence • A working class movement • Libel prosecution • Press taxes • It was agreed among the elite that it was dangerous to social order for the working class to have a printing press
  18. 18. Key Thinking Points • Do we have a free press? • What constraints do journalists face when working for a corporation? • How far is news media controlled or constrained by those in power? • Are newspapers really the Fourth Estate?
  19. 19. David Gauntlett: Web 2.0 • Tim Berner’s Lee invented the Internet with the vision that people would be connected and creative • “He imagined that browsing the Web would be a matter of writing and editing, not just searching and reading” – Gauntlett • Web 2.0 invites users to play • We are seeing a shift away from a ‘sit back and be told’ culture towards more of a ‘making and doing’ culture
  20. 20. Web 2.0 • Includes a social element where users generate and distribute content, often with freedom to share and reuse • Has resulted in an increasing ‘globalisation’ • The birth of a more ‘participatory culture’ • Moving from a communication model of ‘one-to-many’ to a ‘many to many’ system
  21. 21. Keith Bassett: Cyberspace Democracy • “The public intellectual of today must now be much more alive to the possibilities for participating in what could become a new ‘cyberspace democracy’ – an expanded public sphere which is less academic and less elitist”
  22. 22. David Gauntlett: Web 2.0 • In the case of the media, there is obviously the shift towards internet- based interactivity • At least 3/4th of UK population are regular internet users • More than 1/3rd of people have a Facebook account • More and more people are writing blogs, participating in online discussions, sharing information, music and photo, and uploading video.
  23. 23. New Media • Increased interactivity of audiences • Poststructuralist theory sees the audience as active participators in the creation of meaning • In a postmodern world consumption is seen as a positive and participatory act • An increased ‘democratisation’?
  24. 24. Citizen Journalism • Theorist Mark Poster says the internet provides a ‘Habermasian public sphere’ – a cyberdemocratic network for communicating information and points of view that will eventually transform into public opinion.
  25. 25. Dan Gillmor: Citizen Journalists • ‘Big media’ have enjoyed control over who gets to produce and share media • Effect on democracy • Who owns these companies? • Are we represented? • Gillmor sees the Internet as a catalyst for a challenge to this established hegemony • Gillmor calls bloggers ‘the former audience’: news blogs a new form of people’s journalism
  26. 26. Citizen Journalism in Iraq • Blogs offered an alternative to the Western media’s accounts • Collaboration of wikispaces, children’s news blogs and Persian networkers using the Net for a collective voice in a country where free speech is curtailed
  27. 27. Chris Anderson: The Long Tail • How the Internet has transformed economics, commerce and consumption • Revenue from niche products now adds up to the same as from blockbuster products • Internet allows people to look for and share a wider variety of products • Range of filtering services • Broadband allows us to behave in ways that fit our instincts
  28. 28. Is New Media Equal? • Not a symbol of ‘participatory culture’, the Internet is regarded by some as a dangerous and out of control technology that undermines civil society • An instrument of repression? • ‘Digital divide’ • ‘Myth of interactivity’ • China?
  29. 29. Utopians • One side sees the internet as a technology of freedom that is empowering humankind • making accessible the world’s knowledge, building ‘emancipated subjectivities’, promoting a new progressive global politics, and laying the foundation of the ‘new economy’. • The other sees the internet as an over- hyped technology whose potential value has been undermined by ‘digital capitalism’ and social inequality
  30. 30. Dystopians • The internet came to exhibit incongruent features. • It is still a decentralised system in which information is transmitted via independent variable pathways through dispersed computer power. • But on top of this is imposed a new technology of commercial surveillance which enables commercial operators – and potentially governments – to monitor what people do online
  31. 31. For The Exam • Explore both sides of the argument that media is becoming more democratic • Explore the difference that ‘we media’ makes to citizens • You must explore two types of media e.g. news and social networkin