In reflecting what candidates are saying during a campaign, the mass media may well determine the important issues – that is, the media may set the “agenda” of the campaign (McCombs, 2003). Basic/core assumptions The two basic assumptions on which the agenda setting theory is based on are: 1. the press and the media do not reflect reality; they filter and shape it; 2. media concentration on a few issues and subjects leads the public to perceive those issues as more important than other issues. Agenda setting occurs through a cognitive process known as “accessibility,” which implies that the more frequently and prominently the news media covers an issue, the more that issue becomes accessible in the audience’s memory (Iyengar & Kinder, 1987). Types There are three basic types of agenda setting according to Everett Rogers and J.W. Dearing (1988): 1. public Public agenda setting focuses on the audience’s agenda 2. media media agenda setting focuses on the influence of the mass media on the audience.
Because one of the role of news media is playing mediator role between the public and other world. Holding public trust on specific news media is the main task because who trust them will be prepared to wait for their latest version. In fact, news organization might use reliable sources to check whether a hastily prepared item by a competitor has any truth in it. As McCombs (2002), point out the role of mediator as what we know about the world is largely based on what the media decide to tell us. He stated that, “the result of this mediated view of the world is that the priorities of the media strongly influence the priorities of the public; Elements prominent on the media agenda become prominent in the public mind” (McCombs, 2002, P. 2).
The second effect is agenda setting. This is another reason why we might call dependency a "comprehensive" theory of media effects because it includes the theory of agenda-setting within its theoretical framework. Just like other effects, the effects of media agenda-setting should be intensified in times when the audience’s needs and dependency on media are high. Third is attitude-formation. Media shows us new people such as celebrities and political figures.
In this theory, opinion leaders are those constantly exposed to various or specific media content and proceed to interpret it based on their own understanding. The information will be filtered by the opinion leaders and then communicate and reach towards the audiences via the media. This theory deals with the opinion leader and also opinion follower. Opinion leader generally have some form of publicity or followers in which they are able to permeate those opinion through general public who become “opinion followers”. Certain people will have a large influence on how people gain opinions about specific media texts.
After learning about several different theories, the theory I found was the most interesting and believe has greatly impacted our society is Two Step Flow. This is one of many theories that helps us define the way we think, act, and ultimately believe. This specific theory helps us better understand the way we communicate with one another and rationalizes who influences our opinions. In the article “Two-step flow model of communication”, Monica Postelnicu (2016) states, “Two-step flow model of communication, theory of communication that proposes that interpersonal interaction has a far stronger effect on shaping public opinion than mass media outlets.” (para.1) People who we determine are influential and prominent, are ultimately the ones convincing us what to think, what to believe, and how to react. Knowing that people’s minds and ideas are easily being persuaded, proves that all audiences are being active in the communication process.
The first theory was named First Order Agenda Setting, which states that exposure to a story will impact what the public thinks about and influence the issues that they believe are prominent. The second theory was named Second Order Agenda Setting, which builds upon the first idea, adding that the placement and repetition of a story increases the importance that the public places on the issue. McCombs and Shaw’s theory depicts a psychologist viewpoint on what political scientists call framing theory. In the end, the First and Second Order Agenda Setting theories generated by McCombs and Shaw do an adequate job of examining how media influences the public and political agenda. However, this information is only prevalent because of Kinder and Iyengar, who repeated the experiment with a control group to ensure that the evidence was accurate.
With the changes in media technology, some of these ethical values have come under fire. Consider the area of photography, where, with the computer photos can be manipulated to totally distort the truth. Not only journalists know this truth anymore, with social media, almost everyone knows how each one of us can manipulate a photo. With media, they usually manipulate what they know will suit the taste and trigger the masses, which they know will become a big issue. There is also a case wherein agenda setting comes wherein media only shows what they want people to see and think.
According to Franklin (2009), news values are the somewhat “mythical” criteria set by journalist to judge the newsworthiness of an event so that our stories can appeal to our “target audience” This makes it easier for journalist to identify what stories to report. According to Randall (2011) the role of a newspaper is to find out fresh information on matters of public interest and to relay it as quickly and as accurately as possible to readers in an honest and balanced way. Menchers (2006) goes further by saying the role of news is to provide information for people so they “can use to help them make sound decisions about their lives.”
Literature review The agenda-setting function of the mass media has evolved and continues to do so. Since the initial 1968 Chapel Hill study, the concept of agenda setting has become more refined and complex. The potency of agenda-setting influence is found to vary dramatically depending on certain contingent conditions of the receivers of that information and the issues themselves. Yet, as the world continues turning to be a more complex global village and audiences learn more about the world outside and form “pictures in their heads” about issues, the power of the media to influence is not to be underestimated. Brosius and Kepplinger (1990) found that agenda-setting effects were most likely to occur when coverage was intense and when there
The freedom of the press serves the larger purpose of the right of the people to be informed of a broad spectrum of facts, views and opinions. It is the medium through which people gain access to new information and ideas, an essential component of a functioning democracy. Thus, “the survival and flowering of Indian democracy owes a great deal to the freedom and vigour of our press.” The media is vital in the role it plays in uncovering the truth and rousing public opinion, especially in the face of wrongdoing and corruption. Numerous examples exist where the media has played a central role in revealing corrupt practices and shaping the demand for accountability and good governance. The importance of media in a democracy becomes particularly evident when it comes to challenges surrounding media and the elections.