Dina E., Kennedy C., Emily J., Rob D., Laura M.
We had the privilege of studying the relations between media and politics and media and effects. We did this through looking at the agenda setting theory, gatekeeping, desensitization, global village, and the scary world effect . Through our research, we found that all of these things have a large influence on media’s role in politics.
The Agenda Setting Theory
Kennedy found, through research, the agenda setting theory that media has an immeasurable impact on politics. She found that social media allows politicians to reach out and interact with voters like never before. This ultimately allows politicians to used media to choose what they talk about by specifically focusing attentions on certain issues. In addition, she looked at opinion leader’s impact on the agenda setting theory and found social media may have taken on the role of opinion leaders by providing the public with political information. Lastly, Kennedy explored television’s role in politics concluding television controls the agenda by presenting select information and covering particular topics more than others.
Emily took a more descriptive approach when blogging about gatekeeping. She found through research that the current presidential debate is largely effected by gatekeepers. The gatekeepers during the race for president have been protecting and shielding us from the stories that could give our future president a bad name. Emily also did in depth research on the history of gatekeeping and how it all began. Her choice of articles were intended to be an easy read, but also easy to relate to, in order to help them understand the current debate. For example, Emily talks about how the younger audiences are a huge part of the voting process and how without gatekeepers, it would be very hard to decipher what was right from wrong. When reading through Emily’s three blog posts, not only will you learn exactly what gatekeeping is, you will also learn the history, the background and the process of gatekeeping as a whole.
Through the analysis of the media effect of desensitization in politics, Laura found that political events break through the clutter of media by using controversy and violence as platforms. This was especially the case following the Brussels attacks as politicians used the attacks as a platform to gain supporters as they discussed their views on terrorism and immigration. In addition, media sources used violent and controversial rhetoric to break through the clutter of media. These examples present desensitization in ways showing how violence is used to break through the massive amounts of mass media one is surrounded by daily so that the messages are brought to our attention.
Through his analysis of globalization and its affect on the political climate primarily in America, Rob found that the global village is perhaps the single most influential factor when it comes to the spread of political messages. Especially concerning Donald Trump and the Internet, he found that presidential candidates are competing3 in an era dominated by voters who constantly use the Internet. Therefore, it is absolutely essential for candidates to cater to this audience in any way they can–and Donald Trump is currently winning the battle by broadcasting the most messages to the most people, all through the global village on the Internet.
The Scary World Effect
As she analyzed the way media affects politics and the opinion individuals have about politics, Dina found that for the most part news outlets are not the ones to directly change and modify the opinion of the public, yes the public does hear the news and gain information but opinion leaders have a greater influence. Community leaders that we look up to, relate to or agree with have the louder voice, in the article The Scare Factor on Social Media, when Trump removed Ramos from the conference he was excluding and attempting to scare not just him but the community he represented. He currently doesn’t just threaten a community but attempts to scare off a large portion of this country by suggesting radical and inhumane ideas about sensitive topics – immigration, economy, terrorism. The angry voice he project is not one we want the U.S. president to represent us as.
In conclusion, we found the increasingly inescapable relationship between the media and politics and how they interact on a daily basis. We then took these 5 course concepts and analyzed them in depth in order to discover how they effected the media and politics as a whole.