• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Assess the claim that 'The News is selected according to the demands of the target audience'

Extracts from this document...


Assess the claim that 'The News is selected according to the demands of the target audience'. The extent to which the news is selected according to the demands of the target audience will depend on the perspective from which this is viewed. However, it should be noted that news is clearly a social construction- selected by individuals and organizations based upon differing requirements. Pluralist and Functionalist theorists would support the view that news is selected according to audience demand, as it corresponds to their ideas on the market and libertarian dimension. On the other hand, Classical Marxism would disagree with the view, instead arguing that it is media owners, not audiences, who select the news, and this news in turn reflects the capitalist and owner's viewpoint. Neo-Marxist theorists would also disagree with the view that the news is selected according to audience demand, seeing news as being influenced by other factors including the dominant ideology. It could also be argued that news is selected on the basis of other factors, including practical constraints as well as the norms, values and practices of journalists and producers. It can be argued that the news is indeed selected according to the demand of the target audience. This is backed by the functionalist perspective as well as pluralist theories. ...read more.


This can be seen within the framework of Althusser's Ideological State Apparatus, where the media plays an important role in unconscious social control and the imposition of false class consciousness. However, this perspective can be criticized- namely for being too deterministic and failing to take into account the role of the individual. Pluralists would criticize the Marxist view for assuming that people are passive consumers of media output and news- and argue alternatively that people do and have control over what media they consume. Neo-Marxists would criticize the Classical Marxist view for failing to take into account the role of a wider, invisible ideology while it can also be said that the Classical Marxist view does not cover the role of media professionals in shaping news coverage. Neo-Marxist theorists would also disagree with the claim that the news is selected according to the demand of the target audience. They would argue that news is selected according to compliance with the ruling ideology of capitalism which enjoys cultural hegemony (Bourdieu) over other ideologies. Media professionals such as journalists, producers and editors who select the news and act as gatekeepers and agenda-setters (GUMG) are all indoctrinated in the ruling ideology through the virtue of their predominantly middle-class background and hence reflect this ideology in their work. ...read more.


Journalistic Values and Practices may also have a greater impact upon news coverage than audience demand. This is because journalists learn to follow certain rules and norms in their occupation- what we can call 'news values' (Hall). Bureaucratic and Cultural News Values help to shape news coverage- with an emphasis on currency, simplicity, size, expectations, importance and negativity. However, these arguments can be criticized. Classical Marxists and Neo-Marxists would criticize these views for failing to take into account the power differentials and the influence of a dominant ideology within any news gathering and news-presenting organization, while pluralists would argue that the demands of the audience and the market pressures involve inevitably have a greater influence on the news than media culture. In conclusion, it can be argued that although consumer and audience demand does play a clear role in determining news coverage, other factors, including the existence of a dominant ideology (which, from the Functionalist view, could be seen as the social consensus), as well as practical constraints, media values and finally the influence of ownership also play significant roles in deciding the content, style and nature of news. Therefore, it should be said that the news is determined by a mixture of the above in different quantities- interacting with each other in differing circumstances depending on the news organization and other factors. ?? ?? ?? ?? Edwin Loo 13K 05/02/2008 Sociology Essay Page 2 of 2 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Media section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Media essays

  1. CENSORSHIP - A Liberal and Conservative View

    This point seems to be taken up from the producer's point of view. Freedom is perhaps the most dominant theme of Liberalism; censorship in relation to this is obviously heavily criticized. Freedom of expression, and freedom of speech is the stance taken up by many producers, authors, web administrators, and newspapers.

  2. Moral Panic and media folk devils.

    It appears that the secondary data confirms my hypothesis that moral are aimed at a certain group and become more acceptable after some time (for example comic books are now perfectly acceptable). It also appears the older generation panic more as they are usually blamed or seen as the victims.

  1. Outline the three main approaches to Audience Studies assessing the strengths and weaknesses.

    Within the effects approach the audience is seen as impressionable and open to manipulation, summed up by Armand and Michele Mattellart in Theories of Communication book; 'The effects model seems to overlook the fact that possible effects of intervening variables in the communication process and presents the masses as being unquestioning receptacles of media messages'.

  2. Assess the claim that the Media works in ways that support the ideology of ...

    A second strength would be it recognises the centrality of the media as important players in capitalist society. Some of the weaknesses of the manipulative Marxist theory are that this approach assumes that the audiences are essentially passive and accepting of media messages.

  1. "The British media's coverage of asylum seekers and refugees is characterised by stereotyping, exaggeration ...

    By doing this it leads to attacks and other violence issues. The media has created stereotyping of asylum seekers, which has manipulated the public and its wide audience. I think the media should look to portray asylum seekers in a less stereotypical way.

  2. Examine the ways in which the output of the mass media may be influenced ...

    As the control over the production and distribution of ideas is concentrated in the hands of those few who own the means of production, capitalist power is maintained. The media in this way, projects messages, which reinforce the ideology of the ruling class.

  1. What do the Pluralists say about the media generally?

    Individuals can accept, challenge or reject these sources of information. The media themselves are relatively independent in respect of the state, political parties, pressure groups. They are also relatively autonomous in their production of media content. Rather than serving the interests of class capitalism, the control of the media rests with a managerial elite who allow a degree of flexibility.

  2. Assess the pluralist view of media ownership

    The audiences are seen as active in shaping the media content though the market mechanism of supply and demand. WHALE exemplifies this view with the Sun?s move from a socialist to tabloid newspaper as a result of losing its popularity (and partly due to a changing political situation).

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work