Is the Media Too Powerful?

What is the first thing that you do when you come back from school? You'll probably turn on the TV, or communicate with your friends on Facebook. How about your parents? They certainly will like to read the daily newspapers with maybe a cup of tea. Everyday in our life is deeply connected to media, and we learn what is going on in our world through the various eyes of our huge mass media society.
However, are all the information that are spoken through media "entirely safe"? Can we trust them? How about all the politicians who are using media as their political tool to gain power? How about all the unspoken truth that lay hidden in the darker side of our society that had been bashed and ignored by the greedy hands of reporters? But mostly importantly, how is this huge yet mysterious source called media affecting "us" through our life? Our life is influenced both subliminally and consciously by the media. Have you ever thought about automatically becoming self-obedient to the ideas of the media?

Hundreds of teenager girls are dying because of the lack of food caused in order to make their body skinny and tall which is what the media is depicting as an image for a "beautiful body". Children tend to follow what it is shown in the media - their favorite celebrities using cigars, the constant exposure of inappropriate images shown through many TV shows, and thousands of unhealthy junk food advertisements.


Do we control the media - or does the media CONTROL US?

Find out how the mass media is influencing our modern society, the problems caused by those affects, and the ways we can solve it.

Unit 4 Reflection Name: Caroline Kim Global Issues Reflection
  • Enduring Understanding: Responsible choices are part of being a global citizen.
  • Essential Question: How does one participate in global citizenship and why is it important?
  1. Based upon your prior knowledge and current studies develop a response to the essential question that includes topic sentences and details with examples. Place your response below using as much space as you need to form a complete answer.
We can participate in global citizenship by making every choice that lead to maintained solutions for global issues around the world. These global issues especially focus on the challenges mentioned in the 8 UN Millennium Development Goals which mainly involve some issues such as poverty, prime education, equality, mortality, health, and diseases. For example, you can be aware of the sources of the information that are shown in media in order to lead to solution for the media propaganda which is one of the global issues. With global citizenships, we need to practice ourselves as organizations by using tools such as Internet in order be a true global citizen. Some global organizations such as AdBusters which protest against the biased ideas on media is an example of how global citizens use organization tools. It is important for us to value some ethical principles such as integrity, creativity, leadership, experience, appreciation, and innovation. Respecting one another is a way. Participating in a global citizenship is significantly important because by becoming a global citizen, we can acknowledge and solve the global issues that are going on in this world now and make this planet a better place for our future generations. It is also a good opportunity for us to create an organization and to have relationships with people across different boundaries under same purpose. Lastly, it will bring a huge improvement on your personality and your characteristics by leading you to follow important core values.
  1. Tomorrow you will be presenting the research process to grade 5 students. You will need to explain the purpose of our studies. Think about your learning and make a list of those things that you discovered to be useful to you as a researcher/learner.
- Noodletools - Metacognitions - Brainstorming - KWL Chart - Inspiration

The following spaces will need to be designed by you. Please know your scoring guide so you do not miss what is expected. The important part is this: You are showing your thinking as a researcher and your research process.
(P) Put brainstorm here.
What I Know Inspiration document
(P) Broaden Your Knowledge
  • Think about:
  • Books
  • Encyclopedias
  • Online Articles
  • Websites
  • Images
  • Videos
  • Statistics
  • Charts
  • Data Bases
Include notes about your
reasoning for your choices in red

Global Questions - Is the Media Too Powerful? By David Abbott
This book is great! I surely need it for my research because it covers literally all the positive and negative sides about the influence of media on modern society. It also includes the quotes from media experts, and some common examples of the power of media which really helps me to broaden my knowledge. Quote from the book:
"However, experts such as Jugen Habermas and American sociologist C. Wright Mills (1916-1962) have argued that the creation of the mass media has not led to a more democratic society. On the contrary, what the new mass media has done from the beginning of the eighteenth century is to create a force that reflects the interests of elite social groups and that manages and controls public opinion."
Now I have a clearer idea of how the media runs and how that influences the public opinion.

This website is made by the global network of activists who are highly critical of mainstream media and the advertising industry. I like this website because you can see the influence of media not by the view of experts, but by the view of the citizens (activists), just like us!
This website is a personal blog which contains written articles about media, journalists, and press industry. I like this blog because it provides actual examples of media all around the world, and you can really FEEL how the media is affecting our society right now by facing the real examples.
"Check out the third article of the 'most viewed' section in last 24 hours; 'Rupert Merdoch denies claims that new corp might sell UK newspapers ->"
This website is a journalism institute which acts as both public-interest publisher and presenter of work in different media by the students, faculty and alumni. It is pretty cool since I can actually read well-edited books about media that were written by many different people from the institute. The books don't have any limits too; starting from the TV shows to undercover reporting, it covers all different sides of media and also the books are used for educational purpose which suggests that it is appropriate for my age.
"Please Don't Cancel My Favorite Show"
Excerpt: But if there’s nothing logical or reasonable about the Dayenu mentality when it comes to TV, there is something emotionally intuitive about it and the “sure, there have already been enough episodes to make for a really sick DVD box set of this series, but there needs to be more” feeling. And it’s that you can have enough TV, but you can’t have enough of some people, even if they happen to be stuck in TV shows. Underlying all the gruff, screechy bluster about how idiotic NBC or ABC would be to cancel beloved series isn’t anger, but attachment. We audience members don’t know what next year’s episodes will be like, but we do know they’ll have certain characters in them, characters who have never, ever asked us how we’re doing, but who we have invested lots of time and caring into nonetheless."
This part of the actual writing really tells me how huge media is affecting us through the TV shows; that many people are clinging to these TV shows without any purpose. After reading this, I am highly aware that even a slight violence or inappropriate materials shown on these shows can highly affect the children and other young adults who are watching the show.
This is a press complaints commission website. It is really cool since you can see how the people are going against the media reporting false information. I like this website because it provides real-life examples of the media misusing their powers to not report the truth, and how people feel about it.
Complainant Name:

Adjudication - A man v Daily Mail
Clauses Noted: 1, 3, 4, 10
Publication: Daily Mail

A man complained to the Press Complaints Commission that the Daily Mail had obtained material that intruded into his private life in a manner that breached Clauses 1 (Accuracy), 3 (Privacy), 4 (Harassment), and 10 (Clandestine devices and subterfuge) of the Editors' Code of Practice.
This shows how the journalists are invading our privacy in a real life.
I decided to use this website because I learned that it was produced by the Missouri School of Journalism, which contains a very useful international directory of press councils. I was very surprised to know how often we are abusing the copyrights shown in the media, and as I continued to read the website I learned a lot about the usage of media in our daily life. I was actually quite amazed at how much it is influencing our life. Excerpt from the website:
"With the popularity of the Internet, many people are violating music copyright law and do not even know it. Music copyright law can be very tricky. There are multiple music copyrights that you must keep in mind ? lyrics, composition and the recording of the music by an artist. Using someone?s music may involve you acquiring many different licenses such as mechanical, synchronization, performance and publishing licenses. Music copyright law has separate copyrights for the vocal or instrumental recordings of a composition or performance and the copyright of the written lyrics and music. Standard music copyrighting practices usually entail that the writer of the song retains the rights to the right to the music composition which the studio that did the recording of the music holds the rights of the recording. Music copyright law can get very complicated. It can involve negotiations with the writers, producers, agents, heirs and more."
This tells very specifically about the musical copyrights, which is part of the mass media. I learned that the songs in my iTunes that I have gained without buying its actual albums were illegal. No!

Excerpts - Online Articles
  • "These are the effects of mass media in teenagers, they buy what they see on Tv, what their favorite celebrity advertise and what is acceptable by society based on the fashion that the media has imposed them."
  • "However a negative influence in teenagers is the use of cigars by celebrity movie stars, the constant exposure of inappropriate images, the excessive images of violence and exposure to thousands of junk food ads."
  • ->
I totally agree with these excerpts, and I personally think that these are the very serious negative effects of media on us, the children. I have seen many of my friends trying to buy the products that their favorite idol advertises, and thinking that their friends who don't follow the public "fashion trend" seen on the TV "unacceptable and old-fashioned". They bullied them and talked behind their back, subliminally obeying what the media tells them to do! Also, it is very hard to admit this, but myself is sometimes very influenced by media too. For example, my favorite idol is Michael Jackson, and since he advertised and is advertising Pepsi, I support and buy Pepsi colas instead of other corporations' products.
  • "Perhaps most disturbing is the fact that media images of female beauty are unattainable for all but a very small number of women. Researchers generating a computer model of a woman with Barbie-doll proportions, for example, found that her back would be too weak to support the weight of her upper body, and her body would be too narrow to contain more than half a liver and a few of bowel.
  • ->
OH MY GOD! Media is totally wrong on this, and I am very angry about how they depict the "pure beauty" as extremely skinny women posing inappropriate poses. Everyone is beautiful in their own ways, and there shouldn't be any case of teenagers trying to lose weight and dying from health problems... this is sad and cruel. Media is the main cause of this. They should stop it immediately.
  • "Another negative influence of media is eating disorders. A significant number of youth nowadays are suffering from eating disorders attributable to unhealthy lifestyles that are emerging. The television programs, movies, and even print materials often showcase this lifestyle as fun activities despite their negative effect on health."
  • ->
Another very sad and avoided truth of the black media. I see many articles about a lot of teenagers committing suicides because they were bullied in their schools since they were fat. It is mainly caused by the media showing the kids inappropriate materials about losing weights as as "fun activities", when they actually cause health problems. I once thought that I was very fat because I was keep on comparing myself to the thin celebrities shown in TV.
  • "Vampires, werewolves, witches, ghosts - where did they come from? Fairies, superheroes, angels - where did they come from? It's not only media to be blamed, as these characters belong to folklore. But media did play a role in propagating these characters and making them seem real. There is no denying their amusement value or entertainment quotient. But isn't it too much to blindly believe they exist? When the two worlds mix, life becomes difficult."
  • "So there is a section positively influenced by the media while there are others who take the wrong message from it. Media influences them negatively. What is shown with an intent to 'spread a message' ends up becoming a bombardment of the bad, the ugly."
  • "Due to the oh-so-alluring media, most of their time is spent glued to the television, reading celebrity gossip, listening to something sensational or wandering aimlessly on the Internet."
  • ->
When I was reading this article, I was very scared. It wasn't because I was mad or angry, it was because I felt like this article was talking about MYSELF! I once had a time when I was obsessed with fantasy characteristics such as wizards and vampires, and could not "get on earth". I am way too much obsessed with my computer, and I am just sitting in front of my laptop listening to my iTunes right now. Also, I must admit that I am having a huge celebrity obsession right now... though it's not one of those "fangirls" type. Anyways, starting from when did the media influence me this much? I am truly scared of the media's effects on us...

Click the image to go to its link.

I felt like these pictures exactly explain the things that I want to say about the media. It depicts a man constantly getting influenced - being heard, watching, interacting - with the media in this modern world. The front two pictures show the mass media in this modern society. These pictures are great and I must use it for my research.


Recorded in Spring 2009, UC Riverside psychology professor Ellen Wartella talks about media influence on children with host Brad Pomerance as part of Charter Communications Original Programming. I really liked this video because I could clearly hear about the influence of media to children, and how that will affect our future generations from an expert.


This video gives you all sorts of different facts about the influence of social media (twitter, facebook, etc.) on our society. I liked this video because I could learn some useful information about how the social media is deeply affecting our society right now. It was really surprising to learn that 65 billion users log in to Facebook using their mobile devices, and more than half of the Facebook users log in every day.
(P) 2nd Time Around Brainstorm
Add to original Inspiration
or do another.
Record your metacognition using
the note feature of Inspiration.
(P) Define your topic: write a statement
(thesis) that clearly shows your research.
To solve the issues of negative impact that the media has on our modern society, people need to understand where the sources come from, who makes them, and what kind of affects that they will have in the future.
(P) Form questions:
  • Form - What is it like?
  • Function - How does it work?
  • Causation - Why is it like it is?
  • Change - How is it changing?
  • Connection - How is it connected to?
  • Who, What? Where, When, Why,
  • How, What if? How? So what?
(P) Make an outline of the areas you are
(P) Make a list of key words to locate

- Adbusters

- Agenda setting

- Authoritarianism

- Bias

- Blog

- Broadsheet

- Censorship

- Culture jamming

- Defamation

- Dictatorship

- Dog whistling

- Dumbing down

- Embedded reporter

- First Amendment

- Freedom of speech

- Freedom of the press

- Gatekeeper

- Libel

- Libertarian

- Loyalist paramilitary

- News values

- Newsowrthiness

- Press release

- Propaganda

- Scapegoat

- Self-censorship

- Spin

- Spin doctor

(L) Locate a variety of sources; evaluate 2

(L) Select resources from your list & build
works cited using Noodletools
Works Cited

Abbott, David. Global Questions - Is The Media Too Powerful? United States: Arcturus Publishing, 2010. Print.

Adbusters. Adbusters - Media Foundation, 2012. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.

“Beauty and Body Image In the Media.” Media Awareness Network. Media Awareness Network, n.d. Web. 21 May 2012. <>.

Carter, Arthur L. NYU - Journalism Institute. Journalism Institute New York University, 2012. Web. 24 May 2012. <>.

Ellen Wartella on Media Influence on Children . YouTube. ucriverside, 2 Oct. 2012. Web. 21 May 2012. <>.

Greenslade, Roy. Greensalde Blog. Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies., 2012. Web. 20
May 2012. <>.

Mass Media. N.d. Bytwochai. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 May 2012. <>.

Media-Accountability Organization. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 May 2012. <>.

“Negative Influences of Media.”, n.d. Web. 21 May 2012. <>.

“Negative Influences of Media on Society.” Influence. Influence Guide -, n.d. Web. 19 May 2012. <>.

Power Of Social Media . YouTube. InfoCareITS, 30 June 2011. Web. 22 May 2012.

Press Complaints Commission . N.p., 2012. Web. 21 May 2012. <>.

Rayuso. “Mass Media Influences On Society.” HubPages. HubPages Inc., n.d. Web. 21 May 2012.

Theoretical Mass Media Research Approaches. N.d. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Feb. 2011.