The problem of the influence of the media on a mass audience has been of interest to many countries for about a century. At the beginning of the 20th century, when mass media were finally formed, the idea of mass manipulation of society became possible. With the advent of the Internet, television and radio, the world has become more informational. Information has become not only a privilege of the minority, but also everyday and necessary content for a wide audience.
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Thus, the relevance of this topic is obvious, communication has changed, which has new means, and, accordingly, goals. Mass communication, or in other words – the media has become a translator of the entire information environment of society, and the media – the most important and one of the main political instrument of the state. The twenty-first century is a time of development of information technologies, systems, the century of information and opportunities.
With the development of psychology, a variety of methods and methods have been discovered for influencing the human consciousness, applying this to the media – they received almost complete impact of the media on society. Now this effect is increasingly becoming dangerous, rather than useful and informative.
Currently, people are trying not only to convince of something, but to convey and inspire something, and not at all with the help of good arguments, but with the help of various methods, for example, multiple repetitions, using the technical capabilities of equipment to juggle facts, change frame every 4 seconds to attract an audience. The media are called the “fourth power”, because the media have a powerful impact on public consciousness, which in turn play one of the decisive roles in shaping public opinion and formulating the public interests of citizens.
Public opinion exists in almost all spheres and areas of the life of society, but it is far from being expressed and disclosed on any occasion or issue. As a rule, only those problems, facts, events that are relevant and, in turn, arouse public interest and allow multiple interpretations, as well as the opportunity to conduct discussions on the topics covered, fall within the scope of public opinion. So, in modern society, a person is exposed to simultaneous influence from different sides, such media as: television, newspapers, magazines, radio.
It is extremely difficult to navigate and understand the huge amount and amount of information, because a person does not always have the ability and desire to verify the accuracy of the information he received. Most often, after receiving information, a person takes it on faith, that is, considers it the only true one, which contributes to the formation of false ideas that have nothing to do with true. The media should impartially and truthfully convey ideas and information to help the state and citizens create an adequate and complete picture of the world and become a platform for open dialogue within society.
And maintaining conditions that allow the Internet, television, radio, and print media to be independent and free to carry out their mission should be the responsibility of a democratic state. The question arises: how does the media manage to exert such a huge impact on society and thereby shape public opinion?
Firstly, it should be noted that at present, it is the mass media that provide a huge opportunity for a person to receive the latest and latest news from any part of the world, to learn about the situation in the world.
Naturally, the person himself is not able to independently verify the facts obtained for reliability. Therefore, everyone relies on the veracity of this or that information kindly provided by journalists. It turns out that people trust the estimates and judgments of what is happening by the media. Thus, the conclusion suggests itself that unscrupulous journalists and some interested individuals have the ability to manipulate the public consciousness and, as a result, the movement of the masses.
Secondly, continuing the topic and the problem of manipulation and the “oblivion” of the consciousness of society, one should not lose sight of the fact that the media are often, and even often are, intermediaries that form a certain political consciousness among citizens. With the help of a competent PR move, and interaction with public relations, political parties and their leaders can significantly influence the course and result of popular voting. For example, the John F. Kennedy campaign in the 1960s.
A series of debates between the candidates were broadcast on television. In preparation for the television debate, Richard Nixon underestimated the role of television. He hoped that the audience would appreciate his clever thoughts on reforming American politics and his campaign proposals, but he did not attach importance to his appearance and his manner of standing in front of the audience. He refused makeup and looked on the screen pale, gloomy and angry.
In bright light, he seemed unshaven, which looked from the outside as a clear disrespect for voters. The face of the presidential candidate, on which circles under the eyes were clearly visible, expressed constant tension. The spotlights in the studio stood close, and soon after the debate began, his face was covered with drops of sweat, which he wiped almost every minute with a handkerchief. In contrast to Nixon, Kennedy thoroughly thought out his own television image.
His face was tanned and in combination with skillfully applied before make-up looked telegenic. Kennedy held himself confidently, joked a lot and made an impression of the master of life. In four rounds of televised debates, Kennedy won. Nixon, realizing that participation in the debate reduces his rating, refused to participate in the fifth round, thus admitting his defeat even before the start of the election. Kennedy’s apparent superiority in television soon soon largely determined his election victory over Nixon, who was considered the favorite of the election race before the start of the televised debate .
In addition, the media have tremendous and colossal opportunities to rally and bring people together for a certain action, or to obtain a certain benefit. This is a kind of propaganda, only aimed most often at the interests of the person himself, and not the authorities. For example, often with the help of the Internet, television and radio, people learn about actions in support of sick children. This is one of the truly positive functions (and there are many of them) of the media.
Thirdly, a lot also depends on how the event is presented, from what point of view the journalist covers and tells this or that fact or event. The further attitude of society towards this phenomenon, event depends on a competent interpretation of news by the correspondent.
Fourth, the media impose certain behavioral standards that significantly affect the perception of reality, both of ordinary citizens and the elite of society. They become certain guidelines and stereotypes.
Thus, the Tunisian journalist Checker Besbes created on Facebook a special page devoted to the problem of cleaning the streets in the capital of the Tunisian Republic and other cities in North Africa. The news of an unusual form of protest hit the media and even inspired imitators: in Croydon, an area in the south of London, a local newspaper suggested residents take “junk selfies” to demonstrate their dissatisfaction with how the issue of garbage disposal was resolved.
The idea of a journalist attracted thousands of supporters from different countries and cities. However, the most effective and effective means of influencing the consciousness of society, of course, in the first place, remains television. It is the most powerful and operational channel for influencing the human psyche and mind. The presence and feature of not only voices, but also bright “live” pictures on the screen – this is, of course, why television is now the most popular among other electronic media.
Therefore, it has a large number of levers of influence and pressure on public consciousness and opinion. Of course, in the modern world, the media are the most important and effective tool for shaping opinions in society and have a huge number of methods and ways of influencing the public consciousness of not only a person, but the whole state. Media in the life of modern society most often play a very dangerous and negative role, when information replaces its original function of informing the population to fulfill the tasks of forming certain ideas, views, opinions.