Mass Media

  • The Crisis of Spain’s Political Elites – Systemic Factors or Mass Media Influence?

    The subject of the discussion below refers to the political situation in present-day Spain in the context of a broad systemic crisis (economic, political, values, leadership, discourse etc.). Moreover, it covers the media’s impact on the administrating elite who are also subject to the crisis. Th e research questions concern the nature of the interactions among the trifecta of political actors, the media and public opinion. The fundamental question is to what extent the crisis of political elites is a result of systemic dysfunction (a so called de-democratisation of political life) or an eff ect of the media’s activities, which have disclosed and publicised some of the dysfunctions of the above elites. This article will attempt to verify the hypothesis of the aforementioned de-democratisation process in Spain, the extent of the media presence in political life, and the mediatisation of their politics.

  • Between mission and commerciality. Professional journalistic standards in the modern mass media market

    The term State appropriately reflects the dichotomous condition of contemporary journalism. The tension between the commercial and the functional side of the mass media leaves the journalist standing alone on the battlefiield facing a harsh dilemma to remain faithful to professional ethics or to give way to the pressure of ratings. In other words, striving to describe objectively, inform critically, and earnestly, leaves some space for your opponents or makes you dig out seemingly meaningful information and present it in the form of a factoid or a story that probably will not bring you closer to the truth but generates more buzz around the news and entertain the audience. It all comes down to a single choice – serious journalism versus tabloid journalism. In my opinion, it is a serious issue which has to be brought up in any discussion concerning the media. One can see it more clearly by looking closely at both notions. Serious journalism is responsible for its words, along with the awareness of the influence it has on the audience. Tabloid journalism, on the other hand, is marked by a nonchalant audience attitude. It is aware of its influence on the fans, but its impact is simplified compared to mass media doctrines, and comes down to the brutal slogan “riffraff would buy”. Though, not making a big fuss, it is worth saying that with journalism, having the meaning of a public service and letting down society, we are dealing with conflict of values and hitting rock bottom.

  • Book Review: “The theory and practice of mass media functioning” [Teoria i praktyka funkcjonowania mediów], ed. Joanna Marszałek–Kawa, Wydawnictwo Adam Marszałek, Toruń 2010, pp. 320

    A widely held belief has it that mass media is the fourth power. A question arises, however, as to whether the media create information instead of simply providing it. The editor of the book under review indicates that this situation leads to a number of pathologies, such as sponsoring, lack of objectivity, manipulations etc. The media, especially those in the hands of private owners, are profi t-driven. Sensational journalism is aimed at attracting as wide audience as possible.

  • Agenda–setting versus Freedom of Speech

    The most important issue of this paper is contained mostly, though vaguely, in the title. What is agenda-setting and how it is related with freedom of speech domain? In further part I will try to present those, theoretically distant problems. I will also try to present how political and business organizations can affect on daily agenda, so in fact how thy can create access to free speech. There are some situations in mass media world, when those practices can be considered as internal or external censorship. In this paper I specific cases, all selected from American political and media systems. I think that US system is full of contradictions, from law confl icts (state vs federal law, First Amendment), owners of mass media competition (corporations, FCC) and finally state controlled media on the contrary to free speech (censorship).

  • The Unethical (Subliminal) Advertising

    The unethical advertising does not necessarily have to be forbidden. Sometimes a thing arousing common objection is not prohibited. The thing forbidden may only be something synonymously codified. The unethical advertisement which affects ones subconsciousness, constitutes an interesting instance. It was and has been of interest not only of scientists but also various impostors. Zigmund Freud was the one who proved that subconsciousness plays an enormous role in human’s life and may govern one’s acting without the consciousness taking part. There is nothing more tempting for advertising specialists, then and as a result, majority of countries forbids this kind of activity. In Poland as well, in “The Law Concerning Combating the Unfair Competition” (1993), such practices were prohibited. In the art. 3, law 1 it is said that by the unfair competition we understand acting against the law or against good custom if it establishes a threat or violates other contractor’s or client’s business. In the art. 16, law 1, point 4, one may read that such a deed in the advertising domain stands for the utterance, which by encouraging to purchase or to make use of particular service makes an impression of a neutral information. In particular, we mean here the so-called hidden advertisement or cryptoadvertisement. For many years the Polish legislator had not perceived it as necessary to refer to the subconscious or unethical (subliminal) advertisement.

  • The Role of the Internet in Contemporary Democracies

    Recent worldwide convergence of telecommunication and information technologies and dynamic development of mass media lead to noticeable changes in functioning of contemporary countries and societies. Currently, modern information and telecommunication technologies (ICT) begin to play greater role and filter down to almost every field of contemporary human life becoming a very popular subject of researches. Information revolution, that is a rapid technological development, within the scope of computers, communication processes and so" ware (involving substantial decrease in the costs of processing and sharing information), is the driving force behind globalisation. As a result, many social spheres of men remain greatly influenced by modern technologies. Easy access to information (being a consequence of development of the Internet, television and mobile communications) affects millions of people in the world, and also changes rules of social life in a broader perspective. Increasingly greater social impact of telecommunication and information technologies and growing political importance of the Internet (as a form of ICT) seem to be vital arguments that substantiate the usefulness of this study. The aim was to answer question about influence of the Internet on political life, and thus its application into contemporary democracies. Answers to the above questions should be backed up with data concerning the usage of ICT (mostly the Internet) in various political processes. The further analysis include three phenomena: informing, communicating and voting. 

  • Autorska audycja radiowa jako forma rytuału

    Celem artykułu jest interpretacja radiowej audycji autorskiej w antropologicznych kategoriach rytuału. Zakładam, że audycja radiowa, zwłaszcza prowadzona przez charyzmatycznego i obdarzonego autorytetem dziennikarza, jest swoistym rytuałem medialnym. Jego struktura i przebieg noszą znamiona działania rytualnego, determinowanego przez specyfikę medium, w jakim do rytuału dochodzi. Działanie rytualne przebiega w kontekście mediów masowych i charakteryzuje się wielokodowością i wielością parametrów, co wynika z faktu, że w procesie komunikacji tworzone są kontekstowe znaczenia na linii radiowi dziennikarze–słuchacze. Kategoria rytuału medialnego zostanie w tekście zilustrowana przykładami z audycji autorskich prowadzonych w Programie Trzecim Polskiego Radia przez Piotra Kaczkowskiego i Marka Niedźwieckiego w latach 80. XX wieku.

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