Media Bring Social Change

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Researched-Based Essay

Topic # 6: Can media bring about social change? If so, why? If not, why not?

Alexa Grimes

Ryerson University

Radio and Television

February 1st, 2010
Over the last two decades, several major changes have occurred in the media industries that have altered the way in which the media institution operates. Social theorists have always had two distinct visions when it comes to the introduction of new media; one, a utopia where mass media is used to spread ideas and understanding and two, where people use media to transmit only the most vulgar information. Magazines, TV shows, You Tube, Twitter, internet, cell phones, Facebook and My Space are just a few of the many media sources that are used in the twenty-first century. Billions of people around the world are influenced through the media and what information it gives them. The most major changes of note have been how different communication sources transmit important information, how violence and sex is demonstrated through the media, and the increased role of women as consumers of mass media.

On Tuesday January 12th, 2010, a devastating earthquake hit the Caribbean country of Haiti. It destroyed the whole country and left around 239,000 people dead (Zebra Jacque Dawson). ; The survivors need medical attention and food in order to thrive. Many large humanitarian organizations are raising money to help the citizens of Haiti restore their country. The media is playing a huge role in helping advertise and raise money for Haiti. The news and television networks such as CNN and CBC have donated their assistance by providing air time to run Haiti relief commercials and also air “Hope for Haiti” programs where celebrities contribute their talents to raise money towards rebuilding the country. During this show audience members could call in, donate online or send a simple text message to make a contribution. Through this one event, the media used three sources very...
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