There is power in media. Beyond outright censorship and propaganda, the power is in the ability to focus and skew presentations of information or, better yet, disseminate your views so consistently and with so many flashy lights that your opinion quickly becomes tangled with the news your organisation provides. On its own, one article, program or cross platform network amongst many isn’t that huge an influence. Problems arise when that one cross-platform network is the only network and the information it distributes becomes the only truth available.
Media ownership laws are in place to stop this and limit individuals or organizations from monopolising media industries, to stop small groups of people controlling the flow of information. In a democracy, the basis of which is the self-determination of the people and freedom of opinion, nothing could be more important.
Now we’re done with the serious, dramatic bit of this about the stuff I’m sure you already know. Here’s a fun front page from the Tele.
Rupert Murdoch is mentioned in every aspect on this weeks studies, so I might as well throw a picture of him in there as well. For the record, that one there is a result of a image search for “Rupert Murdoch looking Smug.”
It seems like every step of this past week as had something to do with Rupert Murdoch and his control over the press, which brings us to the picture on the right. Minister for Communications under the old Labour government, Stephen Conroy, put forward a series of media law changes that focused on a greater regulation of the press. They included self regulation and a board that would ensure media mergers were in the public interest. This is the front page of the telegraph in response. The Telegraph is owned by Rupert Murdoch and would of course act like it did, persecuting the laws that included sections making it hard for Murdoch to own more media. Also, it’s the telegraph. Hilarious, stupid and embarrassing front pages are kind of its thing.
On a more disturbing note, though the Telegraph is off in regard to the degree, it is correct in the category. The leaders, for the most part, are diabolical dictators with complete control of the media. The media can easily become a tool of a totalitarian government. As students (and hopefully as future Media Industry leaders) we must acknowledge that is not enough to simply be wary of private industry, but we must always be wary of the Government as well. Though both will undoubtedly shape and shift media in their own ways, as practitioners of media it is our responsibility to self regulate and ensure that Media never becomes just a tool for organizations or parties.
We inherit the power of media and, to paraphrase Spider-Mans’ uncle, also it’s responsibility. Through our careers we must endeavour to ensure media always serves the public and does not control it.
New Found Respect for old mate Rupert Sourced here
Rupert Image Sourced:http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2012/feb/19/sun-should-become-like-twitter