In particular, the philosopher believed in the importance of a free press to report actions of the government and individuals; without a free press, unhindered by central control, Marx argued that society could not move forward in an effective, egalitarian way. His views can be positively compared to those of Plato, whose Phaedrus makes similar points as to the role of truth in all communication.
As a political philosopher often at odds with the rest of the world in terms of ideas, Karl Marx nevertheless dedicated himself to creating ideological frameworks based on equality for all classes of people in terms of money, resources and public services. His views on the role of communication throughout society were therefore based on this basic notion of equality and honesty in government and individuals (Marx 52-55).
Marx anticipated in his writings that future generations around the world would experience communicative technological advancements that would allow for a larger number of people to follow current events day by day. Although communications in Marx's time were not what they are today, they were nevertheless given great importance for news reporting and political events - the problem was that this news could be delayed and much of it would never reach distant regions or foreign countries. Marx believed that if politics were ever to be truly honest and transparent, communication technology would need to be improved so that daily politics could be reported clearly and assessed properly (Hardt 19-42).
This belief led to the promotion of the free press; a state of journalism that would not be centrally controlled and censored. As media systems were created and spread, originally across different parts of Europe, newspapers and pamphlets were generally written in accordance with a specific group message or bias; the parliamentary debate would be written to a specific format, the government or the monarchy had the ability to stop any one group or person from publishing certain articles and censorship ran high. The press was, in fact, not something that could be said to inform the masses of current events, but it was more of a gossip trade that people enjoyed for its shocking details (Marr 12). Marx wanted to see the press evolve into something that could build and maintain an equal, functional society but he realised that the only way to do with was to eradicate censorship and promote honest, relevant journalism that affected the masses. Through strong communication networks, Marx hoped to call the public to action where it had been complacent and uninformed for so long (Mehring and Fitzgerald 152).
Phaedrus and Communication
Plato's Phaedrus is a dialogue between characters that revolves primarily around love, but that also includes ideas on communication and how words should be used. The communication side of the dialogue focuses on rhetoric. Plato writes that rhetoric is the art of persuasion, and that without this aim there can be no true conversation or dialogue at all. It is the clear view of the writer that speech and communication are bound to rhetoric and that no writing can be thought wrong unless it is created without truth or knowledge: "As the Spartan said, there is no genuine art of speaking without a grasp