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Thread: Media & Audience Responsibilities

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    Default Media & Audience Responsibilities

    This idea arose in the Royal Wedding topic, and I think it warrants greater discussion outside of that event. So discuss it as a two-way concept; what responsibilities do you think media companies and we as a worldwide audience should have, and do you feel there should be restrictions on what is necessary to show/report?

    To what degree is media coverage immoral - where is the line drawn - and do you as an individual actively negate the influence of mass-media? It's all very easy to sit and decry something because it's on all the TV screens close to hand, but will you say that and then tune in to America's Next Top Model (or insert bullshit vehicle that warps the concept of social acceptability here) with the defence that it's "fun" or "not serious"? It's all the same to me, if you're going to be indignant about a news company screening minute-by-minute footage of warzones, you should be equally offended by Tyra Banks degrading women in front of millions.

    So yes, have it out and play nice, this should be an interesting discussion...

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    At this point I just have a quick point that has occurred to me regarding this subject. I think you have missed an important aspect of this discussion: the cultural aspect. For example, in Mexico the media is so much more lurid and hold no punches in the media when it comes to showing violent images of death and crime scenes in both newspapers and television. In Mexico hardly anybody bats an eye, but here in the U.S, it would totally be unacceptable. I am not sure how it is in Europe, but I also imagine such imagery to be heavily censored. Is Mexican media less immoral and disrespectful by showing such gritty coverage? Have they crossed the line....what line and who drew it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by S.D. View Post
    This idea arose in the Royal Wedding topic
    An interesting fact when you consider that the man who's wedding was being discussed lost his mother while she was pursued by the hungry media.

    In that topic, you spoke about footballers and their place in the media. Here in Aus it's the same, but what they call 'football' is actual rugby: a ridiculous concept as the ball is in contact with your hands for the majority of the game. Anyway, if I had a dollar for every time I turned on the news to see the leading news story be about a sportsman's drunken night out or extramarital affair, I would be a rich man... yet still only half as rich as these sportsmen, I'm sure. Hands up all the Australians here who, over the previous month, got sick to death of the name "Wayne Bennett"? You couldn't escape it. It was the story of the month, because a coach was signing a new contract... or was it Michael Clarke's drunken stumble down the street? Often major news stories from around the world go unnoticed here, but the slightest thing happens in sport, and it's all over the media. I'm pretty sick of it. That's what sports reports and THE DAMNED SPORTS CHANNEL is for.

    As far as the whole X Factor etc thing goes, I am in agreement in my hate for these types of shows. Big Brother is a pile of steaming shit, while contests like X Factor/ Idol piss me off something terrible. I admit that I have watched from time to time, if there's nothing better to do, but I don't care for it beyond the hour it's on. I also spend that hour getting extremely annoyed at the way these people are judged and picked apart based on a set of standards that shouldn't really apply to who does and doesn't get recognition as an artist. However good these people are (and don't get me wrong, some have great voices), the majority have no artistic ability, they are just tape recorders for their favourite songs. When the time comes they often don't have the ability to compose material of any great worth. Plus, they are often young kids picked up to be raped by the industry for 12 months before being dumped and left with massive debt. That's pretty annoying when there's really talented artists out there who struggle through all the shitty bars and clubs, scraping together money to make a demo who won't get noticed because they don't fit in to the media's ideals. But I guess that's more about the industry itself and the show's concept than the media and it's role.

    Quote Originally Posted by ThreeEyedGod View Post
    Is Mexican media less immoral and disrespectful by showing such gritty coverage? Have they crossed the line....what line and who drew it?
    Mexicans like to cross lines as often as they can, especially border ones.
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    To be honest, S.D., I do believe in free press. But it needs to be reformed. Strike that, it needs a new built in moral compass. I believe that the baseline of thier precepts, and ethics, that are questionable at times, should be relegated to less invasive forms of persuing a story. For instance showing up at a restruant, or home, or gas station should be punishable under stalking laws. Other examples of misconduct include chasing someone to their death, or dropping in like storm troopers at a wake. Covering an event, a tragedy, or conducting a pre-arranged interview, that's all fine.
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    I think it's become much easier to insulate oneself from some of the more undesirable aspects of mass-media, what with the abundance of alternative news websites and the like out there. Things that I have no interest in, such as the Royal Wedding, tend to only peripherally show up on my radar in the form of a Facebook status update or an overheard conversation. Not enough people take advantage of the new-found opportunity we have to create our own, personalized media environment, probably because it requires a bit more effort than plonking down in front of the TV and passively absorbing information delivered in the most condensed and sensationalistic way possible so that you'll stick around for the cellphone commercials later. And yes, that's an individualistic solution which ignores a larger social problem, but outside of imposing strict regulations on what should be broadcast, there's nothing to be done, really.

    On the subject of celebrity news, I don't think there's anything inherently wrong with it unless it overshadows more important stories, which tends to happen quite often, unfortunately. I may scoff at people who invest a lot of time tracking the activities of Prince William or... Jennifer Aniston or whomever, but in the end, I'm posting on a website that has a four page thread devoted to Marilyn Manson's affinity for “pasties”. If it were his marriage the media made such a hoopla about, I'm sure most of you would be happy to tune in.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Empirical Guy View Post
    Mexicans like to cross lines as often as they can, especially border ones.
    Oh snap!

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Empirical Guy View Post
    Mexicans like to cross lines as often as they can, especially border ones.
    I....Oh, yeah well you.....I don't even....

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    Quote Originally Posted by S.D. View Post
    what responsibilities do you think media companies and we as a worldwide audience should have, and do you feel there should be restrictions on what is necessary to show/report?
    I think news shouldn't be so profit-driven. I have no idea how this could be accomplished, but I think money corrupts everything. If a news station has to have celebrities and Twitter all over the place every fucking day, they'll do it - otherwise they'd be losing ratings aka money. The news isn't about whatever shiny thing will keep the public's attention that week. It isn't about stealing whatever every other news station is showing at the time. It's sickening to flip through the news channel and see the same thing on over and over. Sure, there are small media networks that aren't huge corporations and one can find legitimate news online, but that doesn't matter if all the public gets is mainstream media. The media has a massive responsibility to the public, it basically controls the zeitgeist of the entire nation. The media wants to start making politics dirty and lose all sense of civility? They will push their agenda to do just that, next thing you know people are screaming like apes at town hall meetings. I think it's a tricky situation, because it's imposing on free speech, but with the power the mainstream media has, I think there should be some sort of regulations.

    Hm, looking back that was kind of a tangent, but don't mind me.

    I think the audience's responsibility is to watch and consume anything they're presented. The rest of us can just boycott lamestream media.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MixMastahTee View Post
    I think news shouldn't be so profit-driven. I have no idea how this could be accomplished, but I think money corrupts everything.
    I completely agree with this. In Australia we have two television channels that are not commercial and are therefore more impartial sources. However, in saying that, both channels have their own agendas and it is important to take this in account when approaching their programs. I would like to think that the media was free from any corruption but unfortunately we live in a corrupt world.

    Quote Originally Posted by MixMastahTee View Post
    The media has a massive responsibility to the public, it basically controls the zeitgeist of the entire nation. The media wants to start making politics dirty and lose all sense of civility? They will push their agenda to do just that, next thing you know people are screaming like apes at town hall meetings. I think it's a tricky situation, because it's imposing on free speech, but with the power the mainstream media has, I think there should be some sort of regulations.
    The Media does have a responsibility to the public, but the public also has a responsibility to what is in the media. Audiences should not mindlessly consume whatever twisted, biased story is put in front of them. People should question, investigate and reflect on what is presented.

    People often complain about how celebrities are treated by the paparazzi. The way to stop this is quite simple, end the demand for these images and videos, stop buying trashy magazines and visiting gossip websites. If this goes on the media will simply continue to fulfill the demand and nothing will change.
    It is the same for reality shows that present audiences with a warped and depraved picture of reality. If you disagree with what is being shown on TV, for example a size eight girl bullied and being told that she is too fat on America's Next Top Model, switch it off or change the channel.
    Until people reject what is being shown, the media will continue to churn out the same bullshit.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Dysmorphia View Post
    The Media does have a responsibility to the public, but the public also has a responsibility to what is in the media. Audiences should not mindlessly consume whatever twisted, biased story is put in front of them. People should question, investigate and reflect on what is presented.

    People often complain about how celebrities are treated by the paparazzi. The way to stop this is quite simple, end the demand for these images and videos, stop buying trashy magazines and visiting gossip websites. If this goes on the media will simply continue to fulfill the demand and nothing will change.
    It is the same for reality shows that present audiences with a warped and depraved picture of reality. If you disagree with what is being shown on TV, for example a size eight girl bullied and being told that she is too fat on America's Next Top Model, switch it off or change the channel.
    Until people reject what is being shown, the media will continue to churn out the same bullshit.
    We're talking about the same public here, right? I don't think it's possible to get the majority of people to stop being mechanical animals, at least in my lifetime. People will continue to devour anything the media shows them, because most people create their opinions based on what is on the TV - not the other way around. I agree that everything you said is true, I just think it's delusional to think the public will ever get hip to the lies.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MixMastahTee View Post
    We're talking about the same public here, right? I don't think it's possible to get the majority of people to stop being mechanical animals, at least in my lifetime. People will continue to devour anything the media shows them, because most people create their opinions based on what is on the TV - not the other way around. I agree that everything you said is true, I just think it's delusional to think the public will ever get hip to the lies.
    I don't think the media will change until people do. Unfortunately, the general public is complacent with their stupidity so I don't see any changes to the media, society, etc. happening any time soon.


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