Monday, 6 February 2012

Effects of mass media on society

  Effects of mass media on society

Effects of Mass Media can be defined as any change induced directly or indirectly through newspapers, films, radio and television. In the 19th century, the communication experts were of the view that access by the mass of population to the printed word might turn docility into uprising. The new man medium of cinema was similarly accused of wide range of effects while T.V. in the eyes of some is responsible for many of the ills of our time as though such media could be somehow divorced from social, political and cultural environments which produce them.

The timing of communication process, writes C.Seymour-Ure in the Political Impact of Mass Media (UK contable, 1974), is probably one of the most important determinants of mass media effects. If the timing is right, the media can often be the arbiter of crisis, by being in the most prominent position to define it. Because, of the agenda setting technique, the media may influence public opinion by determining the priority and importance and less importance of an issue by its own criteria.

According to James Watson and Anne Hill hypotheses about effects : "A few generalized hypothesis about affects can be tentatively posited : the media are probably more likely to modify and reinforce attitudes than change them; Media impact will be greater among the uncommitted than the committed; impact will be greater if all the media are saying more or less the same thing at the same time (Consistency) ; equally if the media are concentrating on a small rather than diverse number of stories (Intensity) and if they are repeating messages, images, viewpoints over and over again (Frequency)."

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