Mass Media Enslavement and Stupidity: Effects of Media on American Culture and Communication

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Although Americans have been concerned about the moral principles involved with mass media approaches, it hasn’t stopped our society from continually investing money and time into fueling the mass media fire. In Tom Cooper’s (2008) In Between the Summits: What Americans Think About Media Ethics, he states:
While some concerns such as deception, invasion of privacy, advertising saturation, and excessive violence apply to multiple channels of communication, others are medium specific. For example, the public’s primary anxieties about the Internet include fraud, spam, and the availability of pornography to children, while the primary concerns about telephone have included telemarketing and wiretapping. Overall findings suggest several
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Reducing dissonance is important because if not handled correctly, dissonance can increase and our beliefs can be compromised. These acts of reducing dissonance can be done in multiple ways, which in this instance can also overlap with the use of mass media. One way of reducing dissonance can be through selective exposure. This is when an individual starts to protect their lifestyle by omitting any information that may conflict with what they believe (Griffin, 2009). An example of this could be through mass media control and ownership. The number of corporations that control the media has considerably been consolidated over the past 20 years, which censors the amount of viewpoints we are exposed to (VC, 2010).
Media ownership today can be traced back to five main companies: AOL Time Warner, Viacom, The Walt Disney Company, Vivendi Universal, and Sony (VC, 2010). The chart provided below summarizes the more popular media.
In this case, we don’t necessarily have control over what information is being selected by the media, but we can weed through this filtered information to find sources that reinforce our lifestyles. An example would be how certain news stations politically tend to be more conservative while others have more of a liberal stance. The viewer has the choice to filter this exposure

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