This argumentative essay is specially made to discuss the possibility for media and mass communication to nurture the development of a healthy, mature culture. Overall, the process of media and mass communication media development has already caused changes in the public sphere. The digitalization of media dramatically increases the chances of the people to get an access to the information, which is transferred instantly and often has not been edited by the people in government or media bosses.
Thus, the information is now very complicated to control and therefore public has more opportunities to form its own opinion by comparing the facts from the different sources. The major problem, which could be seen right away, is the relation between the today’s process of media development and the actual development of a healthy culture. An assumption could be suggested that media and mass communication are able to influence the development of a healthy and mature culture, but it will require some significant changes form both media owners and their employees, as well as from society itself.
Let’s de-construct the elements of the question and consider them in details in order to provide the better analysis. Strinati (2004) claims that the coming of the mass media and the increasing commercialization of culture and leisure resulted in the rise of issues, interests and debates which are still with us today. The researchers talk about culture, but what exactly is a culture? The word origin of culture or, the Latin root of the term is “colere,” meaning anything from cultivating to inhabiting, protecting, or worshipping.
Modern definition of culture is the following: it is a growing sum of “knowledge, experience, beliefs, values, attitudes, meanings, hierarchies, religion, notions of time, roles, spatial relations, concepts of the universe, and material objects and possessions acquired by a group of people in the course of generations. ” (Muller, 2005) Cultures differ depending on the mentioned elements of culture. As the examples of different cultures, the culture of Eastern and Western countries could be named. Mature” means the situation or the final condition when the full desired growth or development has been reached. “Healthy” means the robust and well condition; it is also an efficient and sound being. “Development” is a positive change; it is also a process of growth and an evolution. The word “nurture” means the act of helping to grow or develop; it is also an act of cultivation of some characteristics. “Media” are the means of communication that reach large numbers of people, for example, television, newspapers, radio and internet.
In agreement to Morley (2000) the current global culture is the culture of hyper mobility where “we often engaged in border-crossings of one kind or another, but the nature and functions of borders themselves are shifting”. (Morley,2000) We live in the information economy era, in the era of new progressive technologies and communications that break the borders, in the times of social and economic evolution, the public sphere experiences new challenges and face new opportunities in this world full of complexity. Without a doubt the influence of modern mass communication over the culture is considerable.
The shifts in the social and other aspects that are influenced by the spread of technologies and new media are powerful and they change our lifestyle, our habits and hobbies: they change the way we are living. Power and Scott (2004), argue the significance of mass media technology for economic and social life may be shown by considering certain developments of the 21st century. The situation in the 21st century in terms of the cultural development and its influence on people is much more complex than ever before.
The introduction of internet has a significant influence over business and education because it provides greater learning opportunities than ever before. It is clear that the benefits of new technologies and mass communication for the education are enormous. Many experts claim that media influence the way we live in both positive and negative ways. An individual that aims to gain a significant social success almost can’t achieve it without at least slight use of the information gained through mass communication.
Therefore these options can’t be ignored because they affect the majority of spheres of life and bring certain experience of social change. The development of mass media presents some outstanding social opportunities. But at the same time, the successful rise of mass media has also brought up concerns about the negative consequences of its spreading. There no doubt that mass communications and media have the tremendous influence over society and its culture. Bloomfield, Coombs & Knights, 2000) These changes lead to “new era economics” also known as a knowledge economy, non-linear effects, an unpredictable future, a redefinition of terms, time/distance changes, and much greater transparency. (Bloomfield, Coombs & Knights, 2000) Without a doubt, media sector experience dramatic transformations both in terms of the access to the information, the speed of the information spreading throughout the world and the increasing inability to control the information by the media owners or the government institutions.
The processes of total digitalization and media convergence have started in 2000s and the majority of mass media indicate the possibility of turning the print media into fully digital forms by 2020 or 2025. Digital media has potentially revolutionary impact on the lifestyle of society. There is also an idea that media development and digital revolution are the ways “into an unknown and fundamentally changed future. ” (Feldman, 1997) New media and new way of communications not only influence the culture of society, but they also change the way and manners of the socialization of its members.
The major advantage of electronic communication and information technologies is the capability to transfer the information faster, at a lower cost, and to more people while also offering increased data communality, and processing. Another important aspect in which the media and mass communication can influence and nurture the development of a new healthy culture is the improved opportunity of learning by obtaining necessary information much faster and easier than ever before.
Information acquisition is the process by which information is obtained from the environment and added to the collective stock of knowledge of a person or society in general. Fast information distribution provided by the modern mass communication allows sharing information sources among members of society freely, without the governmental control. The new mass communication also store information, and it plays a critical role in the development of culture, since socially accepted past experiences need to be accumulated for future use.
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