Media Representation Introduction Media today have evolved to become one of the most influential day-to-day “commodity” or aspect of living. It is capable of a lot of things from providing information, news, entertainment, forming opinion, mobilizing individuals or groups of peoples into action, and many others which impact on most if not all of its consumers…
But upon the age of industrialization when the printing press went out in the market, the fray for information and various data that printed matter can provide started. The use of the airwaves soon contributed to the evolution of mass media as radio became portable and mass produced. The forms of entertainment also expanded to fill the void that news, opinion and information left for listeners and their anchormen. Television also provided a turning point, not only for the media industry but for world history. It became a milestone invention and product that every home had to own. And more than that, every room of a home need to feature like a basic commodity. Today, mass media encompass many other forms but the latest phenomenon has become the computer and its peripheral products and services courtesy of the information and communication technologies (ICT). This paper will discuss and analyze media representation in a specific article “Liking Is for Cowards. Go for What Hurts” by Jonathan Franzen published in May 28 at New York Times print and online editions. It is an adaptation from a commencement speech he delivered on May 21 at Kenyon College. Discussion Media representation refers to the various direct and indirect messages conveyed to the audience or reader of any form of communication. In a certain page, whether a magazine, a newspaper, or a website, various messages are delivered across the audience. These messages are dependent on several factors that have been intentionally or unintentionally provided by the media entity. Media entities are the various imprints, sites, stations, competing publications or publishers, or products of a media conglomeration. The messages provided by the media may reflect their representation. Conway (65) discussed the danger of representation where journalists were left on their devices and decision-making on how to interpret a memorandum issued by their supervisor. At length, Conway noted that: “The question of who represents whom is politically fraught, especially when it is journalists who make the decision. In their coverage of the constitutional debates in 1991 and 1992, for instance, CBC and Radio-Canada journalists followed identifiable professional norms when choosing representatives to speak on behalf of the groups identified by McQueen, the end result being that they favored certain speakers while leaving others out. In other words, through their exclusions they failed to meet the task McQueen had set for them.” (65). She was referring to the task given by McQueen as head of the news and current affairs of Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to her staff to provide their viewers a chance to hear the point of view of various groups affected by the debate. Representation in this manner was limited by the inadequacy of the media personnel to identify objectively their sources of information. There are various ways that representation may be interpreted. This paper will proceed to discuss and analyze a New York Times article with regards to its media representation and messages imparted. Media Article: Political Commentary Jonathan Franzen’s (1) commentary begins with the popular trend of technological consumerism. He narrated how he, too, was a gadget user who fell for the hypes and commercial aspects of products specifically the PDA Blackberry series. He soon went on to point out the ...
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