Week 1 Blog Assignment
O’Shaughnessy, Michael, and Jane Sadler. ‘What do the media Do to us? Media and Society: An Introduction, Third Edition. South Melbourne, Vic: Oxford University Press, 2005, 31-58.
As the first piece of reading in this course, I found it quite interesting and inspiring as it provides me a brief concept of how the contemporary society is linked to the media and how the media reflect our world. Moreover, it also brings out some ideas of how and whether the media shape our identities and influences our values and attitudes.
In their article, O’ Shaughnessy and Stadler first stated that our world is undergoing change always, thus social and political problem like inequalities is existed and keep on expanding. However, consent could still be maintained due to the work of social institutions for example the media.
The authors then introduce the function of the media by using three terms: Representation, interpretation and evaluation. So we can say that the media entertain us, help us understand our society and provide us views to judge the information of our world. Furthermore, O’ Shaughnessy and Stadler also stated that the media are mainly produce to fulfill the audiences’ desire and needs. I agree with them as I believe selling the programmes successfully to a large group of audiences is essential because the producers could gain more profits from the advertisements.
Last, O’ Shaughnessy and Stadler focus on the discussion of how and whether the media is affecting us. Obviously, we could see that nowadays the media is not just reflecting our society, but also having a high contribution in constructing our world. For instance, the FA primer league in England is now expanded as a whole world celebrating event due to great power of media. We can receive the latest news of the matches by the internet; we can watch all matches in high quality due to the improved technology. Moreover, the sponsorships and the advertisements have made the league as a big business.
The authors also mention the concept of “the effects model” which explores the influence media has on society. They raise the question of whether overexposure to violence on TV is prompting criminals, or it is just reflecting our real world. In my own view, the overexposure of violence in TV is really having a great influence on encouraging criminals, rather than just reflecting our society. However, as we are all living in a democratic country, we are having the right and judgments of choosing what to consume from the media. Moreover, I think the government has done a good job in censoring the media. So I think there is no reason for people to blame the media.
Horace Li (3232900)