What is the media? The media is “the means of communication, as radio and television, newspapers, and magazines, that reach or influence people widely. ” (Media, Dictionary. com). In other words the media is every thing that communicates something. TV shows, commercials, ads, and movies are all part of the media. Once the internet got more accessible, the birth of another kind of media happened: Social media. Social media is “Web sites and other online means of communication that are used by large groups of people to share information and to develop social and professional contacts. Anything that can be used to connect with others to hear or state opinion will fall under the social media category. Anything from a blog with fascist and racist views to club penguin account is social media. Everywhere you look there is a form of media around you. Nowadays the media has gained lots of power over peoples thoughts and ideas. Especially the thoughts of young pre teens who haven’t had a chance to form opinions of their own. Now if the media uses the hold it has for good or for bad, it all depends on how you look at it.
There are particular kinds of media that certainly wouldn’t be considered “quality media”. For example trashy tabloid magazines covering Lindsay Lohan’s newest scandal. That’s definitely something that would have a negative impact on a young developing mind. The media can have a great negative impact on children under the age of 14 if they aren’t being exposed to “quality media or good role models”. Turn on the TV. Bright white teeth, expensive cars, revealing clothes, skinny girls, buff guys lathered in the best of the best. All engaged in promiscuous taboo behaviors.
Those are the usual images that you’ll be exposed to within the first few minutes. Not just on the shows, but the commercials as well. “According to the Center for a New American Dream, children and teens are exposed to over 25,000 ads in a year, and companies spend over $17 billion a year on marketing toward children and teens. ” (S. Zeiger 1). 25,000 ads containing what? Chances are, nothing educational. The media promotes “ attractiveness” but what is attractiveness?. To the media its skinny. “The Media, Body Image and Eating Disorders paper by the
National Eating Disorders Association says that over 70 percent of articles on weight loss in teen magazines claimed attractiveness as a reason for needing to lose weight. The association also notes that at least one out of every four advertisements sends a message about attractiveness. ” This negatively impacts young female minds because they grow up having a media created view on beauty. They think that to be considered attractive they must be skinny and when they are not at the media’s ideal weight they begin to feel ugly and put themselves down.
If women feel bigger than they are, they are more likely to want to lose weight or develop an If women feel bigger than they are, they are more likely to want to lose weight or develop an eating disorder. The same discussion argues that, in addition to giving females a reason or desire to be smaller the media has other effects on females: Ads persuade females that wrong eating habits are right. Girls feel as if they don’t have what everyone else has. The media makes girls think that those with ideal body images have perfect lives. (S. Zieger 2)
Young girls growing up thinking that they’re not good enough because of the media. The media also impacts young boys too. Big abs and clear skin if you don’t have it then you’re not living up the the medias standards. That leads many boys to have low confidence and a bad body image. “The media does not affect females alone. According to the Center on Media and Child Health, boys can also face lower self-esteem if they feel their bodies do not measure up to the idea of perfection presented by the media”. (S. Zeiger 3). The media also influences the way the pre teens dress. Plus, children begin to think that they have to wear the clothes and outfits that they see on television in order to fit in”(McGuire 1) This lowers the child’s self worth. If the child does not own what’s being shown on TV they begin to feel like they aren’t good enough, thus creating low self esteem. The media has a way of exposing brands and letting everyone know what’s in and out and if you don’t have it well you’re out too. “The amount of advertising and number of impressions are a carefully orchestrated attempt to get your child hooked on their brand.
What’s more, your child gets the message that they just can’t live without the product being pitched. ” (McGuire 2). This also causes problems between the parent and the child. The child will constantly want and think it needs new things because of the media. Some parents less likely to give into the childs wants, creating animosity between the child and parent. The media also puts out a lot of stereotypes. A big stereotype that’s show a lot is the cookie cutter family. A mom, a dad, a brother, a sister, and a pet. According to the national kids count program 35% of kids live in a single parent household.
When the “normal” family is presented to be something very far from a lot of childrens realities, it causes problems for the child’s self image. The media also portrays sex as something cool and fun. Sex, lots of it. That’s what you should be doing. That’s basically what the media says. “Plus, sexuality is glorified on television, in movies, and on the internet, and these impressions are indelibly imprinted on our child’s brain. ” (McGuire 3). The media also has young teen depict the police as something negative. They often view the law as an enemy and think its cool to break it.
This leads them to have a bad relationship with the law enforcement at an older age. “Violence and respect for the law. Much like sexuality, the amount of violence on television, video games, and movies is at an all-time high. This dangerous media influence can desensitize a child to the tragic outcomes often associated with this type of violence. Children can begin to see law enforcement officials as “the enemy” and treat them as such into their teenage years. ” (McGuire 4). The media also messes with education. Surfing twitter in class and posting statuses during a test.
All normal behavior in todays youth. This behavior badly impacting children and their grades. It is very common to see kids spit their homework and studying time with social media. All these bad habits take away from the child’s attention thus impacting the amount the child would learn or produce negatively. Social media also has affected relationships between peers. Social media puts the world at your fingertips. It gives you the power to say whatever you want. Sometimes even things you wouldn’t post in person. Social media gives you some sort of false protection, like you’re hiding behind your keyboard.
Facilitating cyberbullying. “43% of teens aged 13 to 17 report that they have experienced some sort of cyberbullying in the past year. ”(Internet Safety 101). Pornography has also come into very close reach for young teens. “7 out of 10 teens have come across pornography”(Internet Safety 101). This also distorts sexuality for young teens. Social media also stunts social development. If young teens are learning how to communicate through social media rather than in person this creates a social barrier of not knowing how to communicate in person. Then we get socially awkward youth glued to their phones.
Also social media is a very different form of communication, it often leaves space for breaches and miscommunications. When you’re communicating with someone through social media you have no hints like body language and tone to guide you. Leading to more breaches in our relationships. All of these things can be socially deadly for a kid without any maternal or paternal guidance. However in the right hands social media can be more than a blessing, Social media can be used for so many things. It can be used to expand knowledge. There are various blogs, articles, chat rooms and websites all focused on providing knowledge.
Young teens can look at all these various things in order to form an opinion on it. Take politics, a teen can surf through various blogs, chat with various people in order to form their opinion on it. They can visit the old forms of media as well like magazines, papers, radios, and books. Social media is also there for a teen to leave their opinions, or their mark on the generation. ““Certain technical skills in the coming years are not going to be just about consuming media,” she says. “It is also going to be about producing media. It is not just about writing a blog, but also how to leave comments that say something.
Learning to communicate like this is contributing to the general circulation of culture. ””(L. Tripp). Social media provides grounds for youth to learn the new norms of communication. Social media also provides people that because of distance normally would never be able to communicate a way to share ideas. Take the london riots for example. Thousands of british people gathered in london boroughs in order to riot. How did they manage to get the word around? BBM. Blackberry messenger. A form of social media that is like text messaging but instead of a number its a pin. BBM impacted this so much that they dubbed the riots BBM riots.
The london riots are only one example of the many ways social media has aided in people this fast paced world. For younger kids however social media still provides access to information. “How media can benefit children: social benefits – for example, joining online clubs such as Club Penguin or Skoodle which teach children strategies for effectively and safely using social networking sites, or playing computer games with friends and family. ”(Raising Children 1) On sites like Club penguin young teens can learn how to communicate and work together all in a controlled environment. Skooville is another site like Club penguin.
It allows young minds to flourish and learn new things but in a safe monitored environment. Sites like those are a good way for a young teen to expand their social skills without having to fear being exposed to things they or their parents want them to see. You can use the media to follow a good role model. There are many role models who are very active in social media. Seeing what they’re up too is a great way to learn and be engaged without any consequences. You can follow them on twitter or research them or read about them in the paper or magazine. Its a great way to be involved.
Many young teens are influenced by a role model “Teenagers can develop their: values through observing good role models in the media”(Raising children 2) Role models are a great way to get new ideas or to look at for inspiration. But what is a good models “Good role models are people or characters who are doing things or behaving in ways that you wouldn’t mind your child copying or that you would like your child to copy. ”(Raising children 3). So if a TV network or show has things that you want your child to copy they are a good influence. Good programs and tv networks can be beneficial in more than one way.
Good programing can influence children to practice good behaviors. ”Deciding what is “good” : Movies and TV programs can also be a good way to expose your child to diversity, especially ethnic diversity. It will provide them with knowledge without the constant fear of crude explicit things. A sheltered explanation of things. The world is constantly evolving and social media is a great way for teens to stay up to date with the various changes in the world. Social media is also great for following big news it gives teens a chance to feel connected and in the know with one touch of a button.
Social media also helps a lot of shy teens who need support from online communities. It allows kids with unique interests to find each other in this humongous world and share their thoughts and ideas. Sites like Edmodo give teachers the power to communicate with their students easily through social media. sites like that facilitate the student teacher relationship expanding the classroom. With all its pros and cons social networking will continue to impact young teens daily. A lot of it is inevitable in this day and age because the media is literally everywhere.
But it depends alot on how the media is used. If it is used for good then it will have a positive influence and a good impact. But if its misused or without the pooper guides or without strong support it can create a irreversible impact. The media will impact young teens in both ways but its up to them to discern what information is good and what isn’t. what habits are good and what habits they should probably trash. When you try to shelter kids too much you don’t let them learn for themselves and become their own person it can hurt them more than any scheme the media can pull.
Courtney from Study Moose
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