Andrea Lunsford's Our Semi-Literate Youth? Not So Fast

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One hundred years ago nobody heard about the news or current events from Facebook or the newest tweet. Until fairly recently the most up to date news had to be heard through the grapevine or read in a newspaper. Since the creation of the internet and the mass media that comes with it, information can now be spread all the way across the world in the time it takes to hit the enter button on a computer or phone and upload it to the internet. Some people think that this is a bad thing because so many things that are uploaded can be either false information or simply information that is misleading and could teach individuals the wrong thing. However, if mass media is used in the right way it can be beneficial to the accessibility of valuable information, …show more content…

Not So Fast” Andrea Lunsford researched students’ writing for 30-plus years to see what effect new technology has on how students learn. Lunsford discovered that students are actually improving their own writing skills with the help of mass media. Not only does it allow students more access to educational resources and information, but it also encourages students to do more creative thinking and writing outside of class which Lunsford refers to in her article as “life writing.” In her research she recalls the account of a student who sent a friend a text message which was completely informal and would be considered unprofessional by most piers. However, the same student also sent a very formal and professional report to her faculty adviser later on. The reason Lunsford includes this account of events is because it proves that while mass media might seem like its dumbing down the younger generation it is actually teaching them different kinds of writing and when to use different contexts. Although Lunsford provides great research, mass medias effects are not simply grounded in …show more content…

The strength and effects of mass media are expressed perfectly in Denis McQuail’s article “The Influence and Effects of Mass Media.” McQuail does not really focus on the educational spectrum of mass media like Lunsford. Instead he tries to provide useful information about how mass media effects society as a whole and how there can be power gained from ownership of mass media. Instead of just thinking of mass media as a website that teenagers get on to post what they are eating for lunch or what they had to do that day, McQuail looks deeper and writes about how mass media can lead to political and economic power. One example from his article is when he writes about how mass media “can attract and direct attention to problems, solutions or people” and can also be useful in the forms of “persuasion and mobilization.” This just goes to show that although mass media has not been around for all that long it is one of the major driving forces in society

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