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Friday , February 23 , 2024

The Media Mind-set Unveiling Influence Theories

The Media Mind-set Unveiling Influence Theories

14-01-2024
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10 mins Read
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Everyday we read different types of news in different newspapers. And they present the same news using different titles. Our thoughts, beliefs and knowledge are impacted by the mass media. Our social, political, economical, national and international life are shaped by mass media’s facts. In this article, we will discuss how mass media affects us in a theoretical way. 

Let’s talk about how newspapers and news on TV affect how we think. You know, they have different titles for the same news, and that can change how we see things. Imagine a bulletin board – what’s important there shapes what we talk about. Like, if they talk a lot about climate change, we start caring more about it. But here’s the catch: rich people might know about these things sooner because they’re always connected to the news. The Knowledge-gap theory says this creates a gap between rich and not-so-rich people in what they know.

Firstly, we are discussing Agenda setting theory in mass communication. How it influences our thoughts and makes us think. Agenda-setting theory in mass communication is like a news filter. It suggests that the media doesn’t tell you what to think, but it tells you what to think about.

Imagine a busy bulletin board – the important topics pinned there shape what people discuss and care about. For example, if the news highlights climate change frequently, it influences public discussions and priorities. So, the media sets the agenda by deciding what issues get attention. When the mass media set the agenda, an issue is growing in our mind. High socio-economic societies find this news early. Because they are connected with mass media every time. But the lower class of people don’t find the news the same as the upper class. So, a knowledge gap is created between two levels of people.

The Knowledge-gap theory suggests that information spreads faster among those with higher socio-economic status, creating a gap in knowledge between them and individuals with lower socio-economic status over time. This theory highlights the role of media in influencing knowledge disparities within society. The big idea is that people learn new things at different speeds. For example, If there’s a scientific discovery on the news, people who already know a lot about science might get it quicker than those who don’t. When the knowledge gap is created between two classes of people, propaganda may be outspread. Because the news does not spread in the same way. 

Media can shape public perception by strategically presenting information to influence opinions and attitudes. Propaganda theory says the media can be used to sway what people think by sharing one-sided or biased information to serve a specific agenda. 

In this way, a man who is connected with mass media, sees the highlighted news every time in mass media. So, his focus is functioning in a particular thought or news which is always highlighted. Imagine watching the news every day, and they keep showing soldiers being heroes but don’t talk much about how regular people are affected. After a while, you might start thinking the soldiers are the main heroes, and not realize how tough it is for others. That’s cultivation theory, repeated messages shaping how we see things. Cultivation theory suggests that long-term exposure to media content can shape an individual’s perception of reality, influencing their beliefs and attitudes. It’s like a slow drip of media shaping how we see the world. 

So, in the end, we’ve seen how the news we read and watch really shapes the way we think about things. Different theories like Agenda Setting, Knowledge-gap, and Cultivation explain how this happens. It’s like the media sets the agenda by deciding what news gets attention, and sometimes there’s a gap in what different groups of people know.
When the media keeps showing the same stuff, like soldiers being heroes, it can make us think that’s the most important thing. This is called Cultivation theory, where repeated messages affect how we see the world. The bottom line is, we need to be smart about the news we see. Media doesn’t just tell us what to think but influences what we think about. So, it’s up to us to figure out what’s true and what’s not in the news we encounter every day.

Author : Columnist and
International Relations analyst
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Mohammad Abdur Rahman
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