*Look at 5 Pointz building.
What is the media?
o Plural of Latin word “medium” – the means of communication.
The medium by which people get information.
o Television, blogs, podcasts, etc.
o Anything that communicates information to us; news. NEWS is actually
an acronym: North, East, West, South.
o Forms a connection between the public and the government. As
technology improved, the connection between the government and the
people would intensify – we expect a certain level of response and
o These transitions have had profound affects on politics. Question with
new media: Will it enhance or diminish democracy?
o on-demand access to information on digital media.
Media evolution alters connections between public and the government.
o First form of mass media.
o 19 century
Very cheap – a penny to buy.
o Spanish-American War
“First media war”
Newspapers speculated and blamed Spain for ship sinking. It led
to war some argue.
Newspapers both charged people to buy the paper, and charging
advertisers to buy space. Because they were the only form of
mass communication, it was a big business. Radio eventually
posed a challenge, but never really competed with newspapers.
Everyone could afford a newspaper.
Newspapers currently on the decline.
o The Internet is used more now.
Benefits: Environmental, always up to date, much quicker and
easy to link and explore.
o Major cuts – all major newspapers approx.. 30% of staff.
o Advertisements now online.
Two major issues:
o Origins v. “aftermarket” Newspapers still do all initial reporting – this is where stories
come from. We are taking advantage of the industry, but not
giving anything back – exploiting.
o Lost to the head.
Important stories will be lost. Newspapers always have both the
hot stories and minor stories in the back – offered the whole
package. Websites just provide what’s hot and quick. Important
stories will be lost. Newspaper writers are selling their stories
using a story-by-story basis.
Hope with GGN.
o Website: Global Good News. Only reports on good news and stories.
o Roosevelt’s “Fireside Chat”
Many Americans heard the voice of their president for the first
First live connection, changing the relationship between the
people and the president.
Set the president for what still exists: weekly speech from the
o Live connection
o Personal Presidency
o Dies with television
o Largely inconsequential today
15% of Americans use the radio for their major news source.
o Revolution in entertainment and politics
o First televised press conference, JFK
o Connection between public the government intensified.
o Monopolized in its early stages: CBS and NBC were the only two
networks at the time. It was very expensive to deploy a news team
abroad. All major political stories would come from Washington –
exact same coverage. The news always aired at 6 p.m. – very different
o Cable in 1980s, revolutionizing TV and breaking the monopoly. Cable
shows and news stations emerged. The most famous was CNN in
1991, introducing a new model: 24-hour news cycle. Before this,
news was only presented until 6 p.m.
o Blurred line between news and entertainment.
E.g. Letterman, Colbert, etc.
o The Daily Show Perfects formula – news and entertainment.
o On the rise as major news source.
Major news source for young people.
*NOTE: LOOK AT ZIZEK: PERVERT’S GUIDE TO CINEMA
o “Hold a mirror to society.”
E.g. Deep Impact, 2012, White House Down, District 9, Elysium.
Why were these movies important? The President in the
movies are black for the first time ever. Early cultural
acceptance of a black president (Obama was still in law
District 9 was a commentary on the divide that still exists
between the whites and blacks following the Apartheid in
Elysium is about the oppression of the 99%, illegal
immigrants, access to health care, etc.
SEE SMURFS AS REFLECTION OF COMMUNISM.
o Present, shape, share, and challenge.
People consciously and unconsciously make connections.
o Indoctrinate, propaganda.
Rise of the New Media
o On-demand access to information on digital devices
o Rising and dominating
o What does this mean?
o Two scenarios
Good for democracy
Bad for democracy
Enhances democracy Three main arguments against new
1. Active vs. Passive: clicktivism media and its ability to enhance
This refers to people actively democracy:
engaging by clicking around and 1. Killing its life source.
exploring. - Traditional media makes
2. Now HEAR this. important.
3. We’re all reporters. - Develops and spreads.
Users and viewers can send it 2. New, but unheard.
feedback, video clips, and pictures. - Only small group are read.
This has the potential to change 3. Incubator for negativity.
the political equilibrium in that - Lies, malice, and falsehood.
when people actually see It is so easy to post something
something can actually evoke offensive without it being checked.
change. Hits home a lot more! Someone else then links it and
- Global reach; un-missed stories forwards it, and it spreads.
- Political equilibrium 4. More voices
- Beyond pundits and elites
More ways to voice opinions.