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The Powerful Role Of Today’s Media: Positive Impacts Overshadowed By Dangerous Practices

When we talk about living in a world of democracy, the first that comes to our mind is freedom and the power to speak our minds and express our thoughts. And that’s exactly where a healthy media system steps in.

In the past, we saw a number of media outlets arise in the form of cable television and the good old newspapers. Today, however, the advent of technology has brought forward a new version of the media that gains assistance from the internet and leading social media platforms.

It’s almost as if we’re dealing with a much bigger scope and potential to expand to new heights where communication can reach the world faster and quicker. Today, journalism is much more than what it used to be in the past.

We’re seeing it play a crucial role in society too, where the best quality stems from great transparency that manages to keep so many others in check. And it’s these types of forces that can make a change in society too.

We’re bombarded with reporters giving us news that is happening live in various parts of the world. Some are risking their lives by making sure viewers stay informed about what conflict is taking place and when. It’s a scary ordeal but one that does benefit the ecosystem.

However, with the positive does come some negative. We often forget the harsh reality of the media and how powerful of a role it has in affecting so many lives. This compounded with interferences of various kinds gives rise to a multitude of problems and we’re going to discuss the biggest ones for you below.
For starters, it’s important to realize that the media is strongly influenced by bias and these arise as two kinds. Explicit bias is when publishers are completely in charge of what kinds of stories end up getting printed and how they’re framed.

These are supported by a political agenda or perhaps some sort of ideology. You have a narrative or a false script that gets published to fulfill some sort of agenda.

On the other hand, another common issue is related to implicit bias. This has to do with filtering taking place that’s unintentional. The data seen is skewed and shows up in various formats. For instance, a particular story fails to address the main concerns related to a certain matter as that could harm the advertisers involved.

These areas that are difficult to cover include no-fly zones and with each passing day, they’re becoming more and more difficult to deal with, not to mention treacherous territory.

Secondly, in case you didn’t know, social platforms struggle a lot with misinformation and disinformation but what’s the difference?

We know that both the terms are related to false information but the former occurs unintentionally while the latter is done with a deliberate purpose. This is also where you say hello to fake news.

Thirdly, the media of today is struggling with context stripping. One event takes place and it’s closely followed by long lines of discussion without any focus on the context. And these stories are the ones winning in the end because they go viral by capturing attention. But what’s interesting is that real facts are ignored and only those cherry-picked by journalists are given value, leaving many in the dark.

Lastly, the media world is dealing with a squeeze as budgets get limited and teams remain small. The end result is poorly crafted stories through the digital web and PR releases. It’s almost like a poor substitute for better reporting forms and you get poor quality content year-round. Let’s not forget the issues of ad clutter disrupting content on the web.

The issues are plenty but step one to solving them is identifying the loopholes and then speaking on the matter. After all, being literate can pave way for reforms.


H/T: VC

Read next: Study From The Pew Research Center Reveals That 55% Of Journalists Prefer Objectivity Over Subjectivity

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