Various forms of media, such as the television, radio, newspapers, movies, magazines and most notably, the internet, have impacted heavily on the youth. The media not only serves as a source of information but also provides a source of entertainment. Media sources have relentlessly worked on creating appealing images that entice the youth to their content. Although these may be informative, the youths have been coerced into consuming more time reading or browsing for such information. Recent advancements in computers and mobile phones have led to ease of access of the internet via advanced wireless devices. Whereas this creates a tech-savvy generation, the content provided by some media houses may be uncensored and entails violent acts, obscene scenes and vulgar language. In addition, adolescents have been enticed into spending longer hours with strangers rather than family. This undesirable environment, coupled with the fact that today’s parents are heavily burdened with income generating activities hence find little or no time to talk to their children, has led to high incidences of youth violence and untoward behavior. However, the media content has not been entirely negative. This essay analyzes the impact of various forms of the media on the youth and presents various arguments for and against letting young adolescents spend their time scanning media content.
How has the media changed the lives of adolescents?
First, today’s youths spend less time with their families and spend more time with strangers. Tamar Lewin, in “If Your Kids Are Awake, They’re probably Online” notes that children between the ‘ages 8 and 18 spend more than seven and a half hours a day’ using electronic devices (Lewin 1). Five to six years ago, youths spent on average one hour less. In addition, the emergence of advanced electronic media devices has curtailed time spent doing group activities which has been channeled to solitary activities (“Awake”). Brent Staples in “What...
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