SOCIOLOGY TOPIC 7

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Media representations of crime?
Richard Ericson study of Toronto found 45-71% of quality press about forms of deviance. Williams/Dickinson found British newspapers use 30% of news space to crime. Distorted image of crime, criminals & policing
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5 things gained from official statistics?
1.Media portray criminals/victims as older/more middle class 2.Media over represent violent/sexual crime 3.Coverage exaggerates police success & risk of victimisation 4.Crime reported as series of separate events 5.Overplay extraordinary crimes
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News values & crime coverage?
Distorted picture reflects fact news is social construction. News doesnt simply exist 'out there', is outcome of social process=some selected & some rejected. Cohen & Young note, news not discovered but manufactured
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News values?
Criteria by which journalists & editors decide whether story is newsworthy enough
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8 key news values?
1.Immediacy 2.Dramatisation 3.Personalisation 4.Higher status 5.Simplification 6.Novelty or unexpectedness 7.Risk 8.Violence
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Fictional representations of crime?
Mandel estimates 1945-1984 over 10 billion crime thrillers were sold worldwide 25% prime time TV & 20% films are crime bases
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4 points of 'the law of opposites' of fictional representations of crime?
1.Property crime under represented, violence/drugs/sex crimes over represented 2.Real homicides product of brawls/domestic disputes/fictional ones product of greed 3.Fictional sex crimes by psycho strangers not acquaintances 4.Fictional cops get man
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3 recent trends?
1.New genre of 'reality' entertainment shows feature young non white w/c offenders 2.Increasing tendency to show police as corrupt/brutal 3.Victims become more central, law enforcers portrayed as avengers/audiences invited to identify with suffering
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8 ways media might cause crime & deviance?
1.Imitation 2.Arousal 3.Densensitisation 4.Transmitting knowledge of criminal techniques 5.Target for crime 6.Stimulating desires for unaffordable goods 7.Portraying police as incompetent 8.Glamourising offending
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Methods link - Using lab experiments?
Focuses on does viewing violence=violent behaviour? Bandura et al=effect on children watching filmed images of aggression. Experimental/control groups. Allows researcher to control variables/measure effect. Artificiality of setting reduces validity
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Fear of crime?
Link between media use/fear of crime. USA, Gerbner found heave users of tv had higher levels of fear. Schlesinger/Tumber found correlation between media consumption & fear = tabloid readers & heavy users of TV having greater fear of being victim
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Arguments to dispute this view?
May be those already afraid of going out that might watch more TV as they stay in more. Sparks='Media effects' research ignores meaning viewers give to media violence EG Different meanings to violence in cartoons. Reflects interpretivist view
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Media, relative deprivation & crime?
Left realists=mass media help to increase sense of relative deprivation. Lea & Young=mass media have disseminated standardized image of lifestyle in areas of pop culture, where for unemployed on dole has accentuated sense of relative deprivation
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Merton?
Pressure to conform to norm can cause deviance when legit opportunities are blocked. Media are instrumental in setting norm & thus in promoting crime
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3 stages of a media moral panic?
1.Media identify group as folk devil/threat to societal values 2.Media present group in negative, stereotypical fashion & exaggerate scale of problem 3.Moral entrepreneurs/editors/polititions condemn group & its behaviour
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Result of a moral panic?
Leads to crackdown on group. May create self-fulfilling prophecy that amplifies problem that causes the panic to start with
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3 elements Cohen said on inventory/stock taking of a disaster EG. Mods and Rockers?
1.Exaggeration & distortion 2.Prediction 3.Symbolisation
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Methods Link - Using Documents?
Cohen=range of docuimentary sources like national/local press articles, collection of radio/TV broadcasts. Gave insight into how moral panic developed/responses of moral entrepreneurs/police. Less likely to represent views of youth/public.
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Wider context?
Cohen argues moral panics occur at times of social change, reflecting anxieties many feel when values are undermined. Argues panic was from boundary crisis/uncertainty about where boundary lay. Folk devils give focus to pop anxieties about disorder
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Functionalists on wider context?
Moral panic=way of responding to sense of anomie/normlessness create by change. By dramatising threat to society by 'folk devil' media raises collective consciousness and reasserts social controls
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Stuart Hall on wider context?
Neo Marxist approach. Role of moral panics in context of capitalism. Argue panic over 'mugging' distracted attention from crisis of capitalism, divide w/c on racial grounds & legit a more authoritarian style of rule
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3 criticisms of the idea of moral panics?
1.Assumes societal reaction is disproportionate over reaction-who's to decide that? LEFT 2.What turns the 'amplifier' on/off, why do panics not go on increasing indefinitely? 3.Do todays media audiences really react with panic to media exaggerations?
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4 types of cyber crime according to Jewkes?
1.Cyber trespass 2.Cyber-deception & theft 3.Cyber-*********** 4.Cyber-violence
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Policing cyber crime?
Difficult because of scale of internet & limited resources of police & its globalised nature, posing jurisdiction issues. Police give low priority as lacking excitement. ICT provides surveillance opportunities=CCTV
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5 things gained from official statistics?

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1.Media portray criminals/victims as older/more middle class 2.Media over represent violent/sexual crime 3.Coverage exaggerates police success & risk of victimisation 4.Crime reported as series of separate events 5.Overplay extraordinary crimes

Card 3

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News values & crime coverage?

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Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

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News values?

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Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

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8 key news values?

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