Essay about The Impact of Mass Media Influence on Politics

Essay about The Impact of Mass Media Influence on Politics

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The Impact of Mass Media Influence on Politics

What impact do the mass media have on modern government and politics?
The mass media is now a global phenomenon and has revolutionized the way individuals communicate with each other and receive information. In this essay I will examine the three forms of mass media - newspaper, radio and television - and the way they have evolved. I will explain the three main theories relating to the impact of mass media on the public. I will then discuss how media has altered the emphasis of government at election time and on a day-to-day basis.
The term 'mass media' embraces all kinds of information sources, such as books, pamphlets, mail circulars and films. The three principle sources of political information are however television, radio and newspapers. The mass media is a recent innovation, which has reformed the way politics, and government operates. "Without newspapers, radio and pre-eminently television, the present political system could not work. The media are so omnipotent and all-pervasive we are often unaware of the addictive hold they exert over our attention and the messages they implant in our consciousness on a whole range of matters." Television is widely seen as the most important of the three mediums, and radios, the least. In a survey relating to the 1983 British election, television was cited as the most important media source by 63% of respondents, newspapers by 29% and radio by 4%.
Prior to mass media, communications was mainly verbal, between small groups, or by the church or political groups such as the Diggers or Levellers. The first medium to come about was newspapers at the end of the Nineteenth Century. These were largely unregulated and free to ...

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Patterson, T.E. Television and election strategy. In Benjamin, G. (ed.) The Communications Revolution in Politics. Passim

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