Media refers to mass media, which involves communication channels and tools such as broadcast media, print media, and web media. It serves to target a large number of people. Television and radio are considered broadcast media, while newspapers, books, and magazines are considered print media. websites and Social media applications are regarded as web media. Nowadays, the media became the main source of information and news. it is one of the most important factors that influence individuals’ lives. It plays a crucial role in shaping public opinion and determining its trends, as it can reach people of different ages, interests, and backgrounds.
Media provides different contents and target diverse segments of society, it promotes messages, ideas, and perspectives within specific contexts and frames. As some of the contents require to be in the form of a television program and others in the form of a magazine article. And here comes the role of the media, which takes into consideration the nature of each medium, its requirements, and the intended audience
The effective medium is the one that achieves the highest rates of reach to people and influence in society. The media is not isolated from society, nor can a medium succeed without working on social and cultural contexts, the multiplicity of media outlets serves the diversity of society, as each mass category in society has a specific content that corresponds to its needs and interests. For example, healthy lifestyle tv programs are directed to people suffering from diseases like obesity and diabetes, which can be cured by following a healthy lifestyle. Sports tv programs are directed at sports amateurs, and cartoons are usually directed to children.
There are several media roles the most important of which are providing information, raising awareness, and facilitating communication. Each function contributes to influencing the development of individuals as well as nations. Media is indispensable in the dissemination of information, it keeps people informed about the latest news of what is happening around them, and in the world at the same time. It has an impact on the individual’s and society’s cognitive structure. It has the power of shaping people’s opinions and perspectives about aspects of their society as well as the universe. But the degree of influencing people and shaping their attitudes differs according to the way people interact with what is provided by media. For example, some people can analyze the content of media channels, and criticize the content that is displayed and the values and ideas that are promoted by these media means; however, many factors such as guaranteed fundings resources, the ability to media coverage in most regions around the world, as well as addressing debatable issues can push people to believe and adopt the opinions, ideas, and perspectives that a certain media outlet wants to promote.
Media make communication between different societies and people all over the world surpasses geographical barriers and long distances. It facilitates interactions between different cultures, Which serves in eliminating ignorance and stereotypes about others. Through social media applications such as Facebook, Instagram, and tweeter people can communicate with people from other cultures and have direct interaction with them.
Media makes a huge contribution to education. before 3 decades, people could not access the internet. they based their Learning on books and material provided by schools and teachers. After the internet became publically available, the new generation counts basically on information shared by media channels specifically web media. People have the ability to consume information and educational courses simply by having an internet connection. With videos, images, graphics, and audio learning became easier.
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Media facilitates the learning process and the communications between the teachers and the students. Teachers have a better connection with their students when they use social media platforms such as WhatsApp or Facebook. they can provide their students with assistants off courses timing. They can guide their students by directing them to the relevant content and information that will benefit them. For instance, during my baccalaureat year, my mathematics teacher formed a WhatsApp group in order to provide us with off-class timings support, he shared with us practical video courses that he produced, and whenever we asked him to correct or to explain for us an exercise he answered. This method resulted in a huge improvement of our skills which was reflected in our grades.
Media protect social justice and give a voice to oppressed people. By calling for the accountability of people in charge of decision-making positions and their policies concerning their nations. By informing people about corrupt crimes committed by responsible people and asking for social justice, the media can help in decreasing despotism and corruption. But this requires a high translucence from media outlets and journalists performing sincere work on finding solutions for the social issues and enlightening public opinion.
Social networks have contributed to enabling freedom of expression, and have allowed their users to communicate their views and explain their attitudes and reactions towards events that concern them. People could covey their opinion and base their own points of view on analyzing different contents which represent diverse aspects of issues and topics.
Media promote positive models in all aspects of life. It represents the ideal values and examples that people can follow in their lives. for instance, addressing the story of a man defending a person following a certain religion who was exposed to verbal abuse because of his faith, conveys the message that the act of abusing someone because he or she believes in a different religion from yours is unacceptable behavior and that we should respect and tolerate other peoples’ different religious believes and personal choices.
Seeking the truth and clarifying falsehood is one of the most important roles of media. It protects people from constructing opinions and judgments on the basis of false news or information. This includes coverage of wars, important events, and political news. Fake news can impact the destiny of individuals as well as communities. It can be used to destroy someone’s reputation, shape a nation’s destiny or create conflict. Many media owners and journalists promote fake news or information that is not verified in order to serve personal purposes or to gain financial profit. the Iraq war in 2003 changed the destiny and the history of the country. The war was based on false claims by the president of the united states at the time George w. Bush. He claimed that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and produces chemical and biological weapons that are forbidden. The media coverage of this war was completely bias. Media platforms like fox news promoted a number of fake news about Iraq being involved in the 2001 attacks in the united states and connived with Al Quaeda. the war was justified by ensuring the public security of America and the world and that it is also done for the sake of Iraq’s freedom. As we know united states never found such weapons in Iraq, but the post-war consequences made Iraq lose a lot and shaped the history of the country. The US media coverage of the incident was clearly bias and propagandist which makes it significantly responsible for spreading fake and unverified news.
Media plays a vital role in our lives as we can not cut it off from our lives, however, consumers of media should be aware of its impact on their lives and learn skills of analyzing and critical thinking; so they can recognize the accurateness of content, information and news.
To sum up, media roles are illimitde. people can communicate despite their geographical barriers . Thanks to media education became easier. Benificial courses and information became available for all people around the world. It gave oppressed people a voice and it can ensure social justice. Media enlightens people’s opinions by adressing verified facts and avoiding bias facts.