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Topic 4: The mass media and audiences

Some suggest that there is a fairly direct causal link between violence in films, TV
programmes and computer games, and violent real-life crime. Media content exerts an
overwhelmingly negative effect on mass audiences, and particularly the youth. Some
sociologists believe that Britain is…

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This model believes that a direct correlation exists between the violence and antisocial
behaviour portrayed in films, on television, in computer games, etc. and violence and
antisocial behaviour such as drug use and teenage gun/knife crime found in real life. This
model suggests that children and teenagers are vulnerable to…

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Studies by others show that exposure to X-rated material makes both men and women
less satisfied with their partners, less supportive of marriage, more interested in
emotionless sex, and more accepting of female servitude.

There is also evidence that suggests that pornography can be a positive influence on
behaviour. A…

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between fictional/cartoon violence and real violence from a very early age, and generally
know that it should not be imitated.

Buckingham's study illustrates this. The study looked at how children interpret media
violence. His findings illustrated that children are much more sophisticated in their
understanding of media content and much…

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that social networks are usually dominated by opinion leaders. These opinion leaders
expose themselves to different types of media and form an opinion on their content.
These interpretations are then passed on to other members of their social circle. The
media messages have to go through 2 steps:

1. The…

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Blumer and McQuail and Lull see media audiences as active; their uses and gratifications
model suggests that people use the media in order to satisfy particular needs that they

Blumer and McQuail identify four basic needs which people use television to satisfy:

1. Diversion ­ people may immerse themselves…

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This model suggests that the way people interpret media content differs according to
their class, age, gender, ethic group and other sources of identity. The model suggests
that media content is interpreted in a variety of ways.

Morley's research into how audiences interpret the content of a well-known 1970s

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Marxists believe that audiences have been exposed over a long period of time to a
`drip-drip' effect process in which media content has become imbued with ideological
values. Television content, in particular, has been deliberately dumbed down and this has
resulted in a decline of serious programmes such as news,…

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The media transmit the idea that the consumption of signs and symbols for their own
sake is more important than the goods they represent.

The media and globalization:

Thompson has noted that in the last ten years, globalization of communication has
become more intensive and extensive, and this has had…


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