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Digital Media and Society Blog How is information a 'public good' in the media profession - Essay Example


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Digital Media and Society Blog How is information a 'public good' in the media profession

it is important to be aware that even publicly available information can be controlled and used as tools for manipulation (as in news propaganda). A true public good can therefore, be understood as one that is reflective of the global village we live in. Technically, a public good is one that has the following two economic characteristics: (1) The cost of providing it does not depend on how many consumers will benefit from it; (2) It is infeasible to exclude those who do not pay for it. Adam Smith used the example of a lighthouse to illustrate a public good. An important distinction between a lighthouse and information however is that information can be more easily charged for, and it may involve the transfer of a medium such as paper. But information is not like a purely private good either, so it can be described as a quasi-public good then. However, without getting into the argument of whether or not information is a public good, this blog will briefly discuss the need for and some of the issues surrounding information as a public or quasi-public good.

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It is widely acknowledged that we now live in the Information Age in which information has become one of the most important of non-tangible ’goods’. Furthermore, the extent of information becoming available is increasing rapidly. …
Digital Media and Society Blog How is information a public good in the media profession
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