One example that can be used to illustrate the power that the media hold over the shaping of various cultures is the televising of sporting events, particularly the showing of football matches. In recent years all forms of the media have concentrated a large portion of their coverage on sport and in particular, football. The experience of viewing a match has become so highly interactive by means of the internet and digital television that fans now have a choice of camera angle, which players they wish to focus on and instant replays of live television, all at the touch of a button.This could have serious consequences on the number of people actually going to the stadiums to see these fixtures, and the whole atmosphere and the traditional aspects of the game will be lost.
These traditions are a fundamental part of our society. Televised football matches have invaded the programme schedules, at peak viewing times, not only over weekends, but throughout the week. This has happened as a result of the rights to the broadcasting of games being purchased by large television companies such as the BBC and ITV.Televised sporting events pull in a sizeable audience, and thus channels are willing to pay vast sums of money for these broadcasting rights. Some have chosen the option of a sponsorship deal, meaning that a large amount of the clubs’ funds are supplied by a particular television company. This then results in the teams involved having to adhere to the companies’ time schedules and channels now have the ability to dictate when games can be played in order to incorporate them into their own programming schedules. This has massive repercussions on the habits and values of the mass culture and society as a whole.
Saturday nights are no longer ones centred around family orientated entertainment, as the channels are dominated by sport, the result being that families are spending less and less time together and the production of such programmes is diminishing drastically. This will affect the basic intrinsic values of our society and have huge knock-on effects for the future. Those who control the content and form of the media are perceived as being evidently powerful, yet not many could identify them personally, as their names and view points are scarcely detailed.Investigative reporting happens on a regular basis, to gather evidence to expose a scandal or bring an issue to the forefront of debate. However, we, the audience, are never shown any signs of investigation into the identity of the media leaders or the manner in which they operate and to what intent. This can only arouse suspicion amongst critics and consumers of the media, when information is withheld from them in relation to a topic so central to their everyday lives and basic belief systems. They are prompted to examine what the agendas of these media leaders are.
These people who possess so much power and influence over the entire populace, people whom we know very little about. Perhaps we should consider revising the way in which our media operate in this country and attempt to give more power to the consumer. I feel that we should not be told what we should and should not believe, or even be influenced on such matters by such a subjective organisation.
Audiences should be given the right to an input on what they are consuming, what issues carry the most weight and therefore should be reported on, and what they wish to be exposed to.Traditional values of spirituality have been replaced by the media, and as a result they can now claim to have a large degree of control over the population with regards to what is perceived as ‘the norm’. It may not be possible to consider such a drastic change as a media based more on a democratic structure of elected leaders than the current autocratic design that we possess today as being a realistic prospect in the foreseeable future.
However, through continued coverage and debate concerning the issues raised I believe that what is a possibility is a mediated culture that concentrates on the important events that are occurring around the globe, presented in an objective manner without hidden agenda; one which does not try to alter our cultural beliefs but on the contrary, one which celebrates and respects the vast number of differences that distinguish diverse cultures. An ideologically honest media.BIBLIOGRAPHY”The Media: An Introduction”; Briggs, A. , Cobley, P. ; 2002 (Second Edition) “Studying the Media”; O’Sullivan, T. , Dutton, B.
, Rayner, P. ; 2003 (Third Edition) Collin’s English Dictionary 76A4 Lecture Notes; Spring Semester 2005; Raymond Boyle http://www. footballculture. com http://www. esh. ed. ac.
uk/urban_history http://www. danielpipes. org/article http://environment.
harvard. edu/religion/disciplines/gender http://kvc. minbuza. nl/uk/archive/commentary/norman. html