Mass Media and Politics: Lecture Overview1. Democratic vs. totalitarian regimes2. News filters 1. Ownership 2. Advertising 3. Sources 4. Anti-communism 1
Mass Media and Politics: Lecture Overview3. Media regulation indemocratic societies 1. Military 2. Radio 3. Deregulation 4. Ownership regulation: US & NZ 5. Content regulation: US & NZ 2
Mass Media and Politics: Lecture Overview3. Effects theory 1. Aggressor 2. Victim 3. Desensitization 4. Structure and agency 3
Last week: Economic influence on the mediaEconomic environment (structure) Media Industry (agency) 4
Political influence on the mediaPolitical environment (structure) Media Industry (agency) 5
Mass Media & Politics• We must consider the differences between democratic and totalitarian regimes
Propaganda• Propaganda is the deliberate and systematic attempt to shape perceptions, manipulate cognitions, and direct behavior to achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist 7
Mass Media & Politics• In totalitarian regimes, audiences become adept at decoding propaganda• This propaganda can have a domestic and/or international focus
Mass Media & Politics• In totalitarian regimes, audiences become adept at decoding propaganda• Of course, some attempts at propaganda are more subtle than others, even in totalitarian regimes… …there are no protests…
Mass Media & Politics• In democratic regimes, we pride ourselves on our relative freedom of expression…Tiananmen Square
Mass Media & Politics• But should we really be so secure in our superiority? Some say „no‟…
Mass Media & Politics• Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky: „The Propaganda Model‟ of news creation in „Manufacturing Consent‟ (1988) The existence of 5 new filters: 1. Ownership 2. Advertising 3. Sourcing 4. Flak 5. Anti-communism
Mass Media & Politics• Advertising: – Monsanto – Bhopal - Dow – BP Oil
Mass Media & Politics• Sourcing: political elites over-relied upon
Mass Media & Politics• Anti-communism: now better conceived of more generally as „threats to capitalism‟
Mass Media & Politics • „Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media‟ • Well-worth watching • Should be available at some video stores if your internet isn‟t up to streaming the whole thing.
Mass Media & Politics• Therefore, in democratic societies, the questions become: – Should the media be regulated? – And if so, how should they be regulated? – By who?
Media Regulation• Military content regulation – Press pools are established, which • Help the military ensure safety • But they do so by restricting press access – Information is censored
Media Regulation• Military content regulation – Does it just end up producing propaganda?
Media Regulation• Military content regulation – Propaganda • not necessarily true
Media RegulationMilitary content regulation• Propaganda has a long history, and was very prominent during WW2 on bothsides
Media RegulationMilitary content regulation• But is it persuasion or propaganda?• Is everything relativist propaganda?• Who controls the flow of information?
Media RegulationRadio• „Pirate radio‟ rebels against idea that the radio spectrum is a protected space that can be owned…• but the spectrum is limited
Media RegulationRadio• Spectrum scarcity has resulted in licenses being issued to “protect the public interest”
Media regulationRadio• Pirate radio is based on the idea that the radio spectrum should be free and open to everyone – Radio Hauraki: Later granted a private land licence
Media RegulationRadio• on the margins – Democracy Now – Plains FM
Media RegulationDeregulation• AGAINST regulation• ...but what do they favour?• …what would media like that look like?
Media RegulationMedia regulation• Can be hard to detect, but it is fairly widespread• Content regulation• Ownership regulation
Media RegulationAdvertising regulation in NZ• The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) – Public & professional with public majority – Public decision-making processObjectives• Regulating misleading or deceptive advertising• Promote voluntary self-regulation• Fund Advertising Standards Complaints Board
Media RegulationRegulation is generally done in the name of the public interest• What public?• What interest?
Media RegulationThe BBC or Reithianmodel• Government control of organisation & financing – Emphasizes public service – Nationalistic – Politicized – Noncommercial (but some private interests)
Media RegulationMedia ownership regulation• The US situation: – 1996 Telecommunications Act in U.S. – Eased restrictions on cross-media ownership
Media RegulationMedia ownership regulation• The New Zealand situation: – No regulatory body examining: – Ownershiprestrictio ns – Programme-based license requirements – Programme quotas
Media RegulationMedia content regulation• The US situation – The (repealed) Fairness Doctrine – Broadcasters must cover public issues & provide both sides – Result: one-sided popular programming
Media RegulationMedia content regulation• The NZ situation – New Zealand Press Council (NZPC) • Created in response to potential for Labour governmental interference – Mix of industry & public reps – Objectives • Considering complaints against the press • Promoting freedom of speech/press • Maintaining professional standards of the press
Media RegulationMedia content regulation• The NZ situation – The Broadcasting Standards Authority (BSA) • Funded by Parliament & broadcasters • A government-initiated regulatory framework – Tasks and objectives • Receiving complaints about alleged breaches of practice • Encouraging broadcasters to develop codes of ethics • Conducting research on broadcast standards
Media RegulationMedia content regulation• The NZ situation – The Broadcasting Standards Authority (BSA) • Responsible for programme standards – Good taste – Fairness – Accuracy – Privacy • They can impose fines and other punishment if the complaint is upheld.
Media RegulationFilm content regulation• In the US, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA)• In NZ, the Office of Filmand Literature Classification(OFLC)
Media regulationContent regulation• Regulation via citizen protest – Monitorial citizen groups
Media RegulationFilm content• Realities – 80 percent of R16/R18 rated films marketed to kids
Media RegulationBroadcast content• Realities – V-chips rarely used
Media RegulationMusic• Realities – Advisory labels boost sales
Media RegulationContent regulation• Violence – 8,000 murders seen before finishing primary school