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The Negative Effects of Mass Media

Introduction

Today, mass media is a powerful factor of influence on a psychological and social condition of people. At the same time, the level of influence on the youth, the audience with weak consciousness, and not settled outlook, is the greatest. Mass media has numerous functions; therefore, there are countless aspects of influence. The most popular beliefs will be studied in this work, including both positive and negative factors that affect the identity of the young people.

The primary negative influence of mass media lies in the fact that its task is to create a strong, steady relation to the given phenomenon due to persuasion. Thanks to the biological nature of a human being, the person is predisposed to persuasion, imitation, and infectivity. The essence of the mass media activity that aims at inspiring something in the society, is inhumane as people cannot managed the influence directed on them and, respectively, are powerless in the face of such persuasions. The value of the mass media influence is dramatic not only in terms of social position of the modern youth, but also mental condition.

The Amplified Annotated Bibliography

Bryant, J., and Zillmann, D. (2002). Media effects: Advances in theory and research (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

This book reveals classic theories on media effects and reflects current directions in theory and research. It asserts that a quickly evolving industry of mass media has both negative and positive effects on children, youth, and adults.

The second edition was complemented and updated, in order to reflect the modern directions in the field of theory and research. Additional data and information presented from a different perspective provide a new view on this extremely popular topic. All the chapters from the first edition were also included, updated, and extensively revised. The total number of chapters in the second edition is 22. The new chapters studies the areas of current interests in the study of media effects: reception processes of media consumption, intermedia processes, prosocial and educational effects; variations of media influence, new issue perception, and the influence of the third parties. The method of associations, successfully described in this book, assumes a careful selection and a special configuration of the concepts, causing either positive or negative associations, which allow influencing the way, in which information is perceived. The authors assume that mass media standardizes the message; hence, it “brings” information under a stereotype, general opinion in a specific way. The person has to perceive the message unconditionally and effortless, without an internal fight and a critical analysis. Mass media accustoms the person to stereotyped thinking; therefore, it reduces an intellectual level of messages. Repetition serves as the main method of inculcating necessary stereotypes in the consciousness of people. According to Bryant and Zillmann, today, the youth often develops an opinion of impossibility to influence the future, disinterest of the authorities, and total despair, because of mass media. Thus, the majority of the researchers point to a close connection of stereotypes and a huge influence of the mass media that shape the perception of the world, behavior, and acts of their “heroes,” created by the press, radio, or television.

The information was published in 2002; however, the data come from the past studies. It is a kind of psychological research, as the authors have experience in developing psychological themes and theories. This book will provide this paper with relevant and reliable information about positive and negative effects of mass media on people of different age, reflections of the areas of renewed or current interests in the study of media effects.

Harris, R. J. (2009). A cognitive psychology of mass communication (5th ed.). New York, NY: Routledge.

The author of the book, Richard Jackson Harris, continues his study on how media affects people’s experiences, how people acquire their knowledge about the world, and how people’s attitudes and behavior are influenced by this knowledge. This book covers a wide range of media issues from the daily-discussed topics of violence, sex, and advertisement to lesser-discussed ones, such as sports, values, entertainment, and education.

The book presents theories from the communicative and psychological point of view along with reviews of the appropriate research. The fully updated fifth edition offers highly accessible contemporary references to all kinds of media famous among the students, a substantial discussion of research and theories, including some interpretations of the original researches, balanced approach that covers the depth and breadth of the discussed subject from the perspective of both media and psychology disciplines. The book teaches the students on how to evaluate and examine the mediated messages; it also covers the theoretical issues, presents extensive analysis, and research on mass communication. The citations from this book will be helpful for this paper as its main topic deals with mass media and its influence on people’s cognitions, their behaviors, and attitudes.

Preiss, R. W., Gayle, B. M., Burrell, N., Allen, M., Bryant, J. (Eds.). (2007). Mass media effects research: Advances through meta-analysis. New York, NY: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

This book offers a unique number of meta-analyses, which cover the variety of researches on media influence. The editors brought together information and data on organized by mass media campaigns, theories, and outcomes. The number of chapters, included in this book, offers significant insights on current social scientific research. The book also reveals the effects of mass media, addressing such topics as advertising effects on adolescents and children, pornography effects, aggressive and violent video games, political involvement and media use. The author considers that the flow of the visual and acoustical information, which does not demand concentration and intellectual efforts, is perceived passively. Over time, it is transferred to a real life; hence, a child starts perceiving the information as the absolute truth and reality. It is getting more and more difficult to concentrate on the task performance or make intellectual or strong-willed effort. The child gets used to do only those things, which do not demand efforts; therefore, he or she has difficulties with taking part in lessons and perceiving educational information. The author states that because of media influence there is no development of nervous links, memory, and associations without an active cerebration. The final section of the book is characterized with a thought-provoking commentary from some leading theorists.

This research is an essential resource for pupils, students, graduate students, and researches in media psychology, media effects, and mass communication in the society. The citations taken from this book will be appropriate and relevant for this work as it provides valuable information on a major topic is mass media effects on people.

Anonymous. (2007). Mass media’s influence on everyday speech amongst adolescents: Research findings and perspectives. Leibniz Universit?t Hannover: Grin.

The author of this book asserts that, nowadays, it is impossible to imagine modern life without mass media. Mass media fulfills numerous important functions like information circulation; hence, it contributes to education purposes. There are also some negative effects resulting from mass communication, which can be speculated at this point. Recently, the effects of mass media have become a widely discussed subject, which attracts much public attention. The acts of violence viewed on television or video games have a greater influence on children and teenagers than on adults. According to the author, the media itself contributes to its own disreputability. The process of perception is only “a mechanical adjustment of still unknown phenomenon under a steady general formula” (a stereotype). Mass media standardizes the message, which means it “brings” information under a stereotype. The person has to perceive the message unconditional and effortless, without an internal fight, or critical analysis.

The citations from the book will be valuable for this paper as the book reflects about the development of mass media, its effects on people, and role in society. The author asserts that media products are extremely diverse in nature; they range from radio and television broadcasting, newspapers, and other written products to motion pictures, the Internet, and video games. Its diversity makes mass media an attractive field for investigation in schools and universities around the globe.