The Media

media

So many of us think that we are above the media and press brainwashing. We think we can interpret advertisements and make our own decisions based on the product. We think that we can develop our own opinion regarding the news and we think that we cannot be manipulated by propaganda. However, I would argue the opposite.

First and foremost I would like to address advertisements. They have become all pervading in our lives. They are everywhere. There is no escaping them. This is mainly due to the variety of forms that adverts can take. They can be found on billboards, magazines, television, radio, on the internet and newspapers. Companies who develop adverts have established ways in which the product they are broadcasting can subconsciously enter your mind, even if you aren’t paying much attention. Technology has exacerbated this culture with adverts on social media sites, in particular Facebook, which are aimed at your search and profile history. Thus making the adverts that much more effective. This also continues the commercialised culture of society.

The attack on our subconscious is also undertaken in the news. The newspaper headlines naturally distort our view of the news. Emotive headlines are common and thus show the perspective of the newspaper and journalist that is then pushed onto the reader, often subconsciously. I have found many instances of this, one of which was in the Daily Mail today and stated, “This is legalised murder, claim family as judges rule doctors can let Grandad die.” The use of “Grandad” here is emotive as it suggested familial ties rather than using the more objective term “man”.

Finally, the use of propaganda for humanitarian campaigns also play on our emotions. This is through accusatory language such as the use of “you” which makes the reader feel as though they are the only ones who can help. Humanitarian campaigns also use images of suffering that evoke guilt and the desire to help, this is the same as quantifying things that you buy in your life compared to how much they can help in underprivileged areas. An example of this is the costĀ of a coffee a week can save a life. I’m not saying this kind of humanitarian campaigning is wrong, as it certainly works and it is vital that humanitarian campaigns raise money, I just found it interesting to assess their fundraising techniques.

It is important to remember that we live in a society that is becoming increasingly globalised and commercialised and the press, media and campaigners react accordingly. Advertisements and propaganda have become even more important in the last few years due to the economic climate not being conducive to spending or donating money. Thus, naturally, this kind of press and advertising has been exacerbated in recent years.

Advertisements