Sample Essay on Media Culture

Media Culture

With the increasing advances in media landscape, a lot of incorporation of social media systems into communication approaches has been witnessed. The populace has been able to expand communicational frameworks with minimal regard to physical proximities. This has led to the emergence of a culture characterized by massive participation. This participation has gone a long way in creating opportunity for the society to be able to participate in matters that shape the media landscape.  New media platform such as distribution of information, academics, communications, market structures as well as entertainment frameworks. The paper implores media cultures and its impacts.

Digitized technologies have impacted the means in which information is stored, shared and distributed. Individual are able to interact with each other on online platforms, watch films and listen music. With technology, the continuum that exists between enjoying, engagement, production and the consumption of media is very thin today. The internet has had a major influence on the political and cultural frameworks.

The media culture has been as a result of the subsequent incorporation of intellect into mass media. Adelmann (2007) this culture has been associated with the contemporary western capitalism that is believed to have emerged in the 20th century. This has gone as far as influencing not only the populace but also the audience’s tastes and preferences. To a greater extent, this was influenced by the populace. This was especially by the individual who concentrated on art prior to the 20th century.

Rosenblatt (2006) argued that the film industry played a critical role in the emergence of the drama of consumerism. At times, the culture in media seems to incline on matters of advertisements as well as public relations which are perceived as manipulations to the target audiences. This is done so as to win over consumerism. Adorno (1991) cited that the culture market does not adapt to demands of the consumer but instead counterfeits the demands and thus robs the clients of their functions.  According to Keller (2013), in a contemporary media society, domination of the media information and entertainment are supreme and educate the masses on how to behave, feel, think and desire.

There has been an escalating tendency to replace authentic and favorable cultures with industrialized tastes. This has led to the pursuit of cultural values such as Hollywood. It is worth noting that the Hollywood movies have managed to dominate the movie world (Silver, 2007). This dilutes the previously dominating preferences of the masses. The rates at which film productions are dominating the media world are terrifying. The Hollywood produced films are centered on thrilling and the use of shock-specific values. This is unlike the preferred formulaic which previously existed at the emergence of media. Most of the subjects in the films today revolve around reprisal, violence, belligerence and greed. This is systematically done in plots that are simple, standardized-shelved templates and the levels of dialogue are minimized. The actors are unatttracting as most of the dialogue is simplified, unrealistic and unrewardingly constructed.

The spread of Hollywood has been blamed for the propagation and adoption of western practices and products. Brooks (2006) cited that cultural diversities threaten the Hollywood capabilities in generation of revenues from overseas markets in the interests of curtailing the cultural homogeneities. This is because American cultural imperialism has been perceived as threat to the global morals and ways of life. This is despite the fact, U.S is not the only nation that is an economic and political imperialists. The proponents of the spread of Americanization argue that this is vital for the spread of positive ideologies such as freedom, egalitarianism, equity and human rights. They believe these concepts are useful in our contemporary society as they make the world a better place to live. Most of the young people in the world have mannerisms similar to what is depicted in the Hollywood films.

The spread of American ideologies can be perceived as a threat due to their effects on local cultures and consumerism patterns. This is because with time, the traditional cultural practices are eroded in favor of cultural synchronizations. In this case, the imperial effects are evident. This leads to a case where the cultures of the locals are completely extinct and a lot of uniformities exist in the world cultural values.

Theories of Mass Society and a Critique of Mass Culture

Ginsburg (2012) argued that sound politics are critical in impacting aesthetic forms. This is done within greater forums as well as circulating networks. The media has been playing a critical role in current politics. The political arena is about what we see and the acts that are used in politics are encoded in medial forms. Strinati (2004) cited that mass media can be equated to mass propaganda as well as mass repression. The agenda in revolution aspect in the world today are shifted into media aspects. An example of this was the liberal democratic politics that were witnessed in the Soviet Union. Elections are increasing focusing on the media. A lot of emphasis has been laid on the use of media which as a way to market politicians and their ideologies. Democratic politicking has been placing prominence on the use of mass media as a forum for boosting democratic influence toppled with the desire to seek public opinions. Overtime, the media has been used as a platform in empowering citizens. In addition, it has been as key aspect in restraining and redressing the administrative bodies. It is worth noting that the media owners have not been neutral observers but political actors in their own line of influence. The media elites have for quite some time been given a high airing of the political party and candidate that they support. These aspect led to the perception that media was a sign of threat to the democracy. This was majorly by the conservatives, those who held the pessimistic angle on mass education, democratization as well as modernization. The opponents of mass media held mass media as a way of lowering the values of the elite. The media culture was perceived as a way to totalitarianism by terrorizing our thoughts and manipulating our ideologies.  This is as opposed to the contemporary when both the writers and the politicians are not committed to matters of democracy. Williams (1983) cited that democratization of cultures could be attained through cultural institutions.

Critics argues that the mass culture; at times referred to as Americanization is less widespread and its impacts less felt. This is despite the fact that its concepts are viable of turning up to varied arguments. This is especially the print such as the newspapers and the journals. Some of the arguments given by the critics are purely centered on anti-Americanism or the opposite. Americanization has been perceived as a means to liberate other than an oppressor. This is because it has been majorly used to extend the issues on cultural expression rather than narrowing it. A lot of similarities as opposed to diversities are highly witnessed in the contemporary media cultures.

With the media culture comes the empowerment of individuals. This has been evident in the way individual are making decisions and ideologies. Opinions are not held at an individual level but a set of mediated opinions. These are what is shaping and articulating a culture that goes beyond self-replicating opinions of power. These are structured around inclusion and exclusion of individuality.

Media culture and semiosis

Semiosis results in the different way media texts are decoded or interpretation of signs (Gaines, n.d).  The theory of semiosis is critical for the construction and deconstruction of the media concepts and cultures. In this case, sign are used in deducing meaning in different texts by relating the temporal signs to the homologenic forms in sign systems. For instance, the interpretation of one text can take the formed connotation of other texts. In this case, the steps in the sequence of interpreting are based on sequential subsequent artworks. Symbolic relationship is dependent on positioning of meanings in cultural significant expressions with intelligibility being critical aspects. This is done in addition to the signature of the significance, language of the community in question as well as the interpretive communal appreciations. Desjardins (2008) cited that the dismantling of textual linearity brought about by the criticism. This brings about the power of dynamics between who is represented and how the representation is done.

The Significance of Unequal Global Relations of Power and Access to Culture

The unequal global relations of power and cultures can be analyzed by evaluating the global economic cultures. These cultures have been complicated and the market reach almost left for the elite. This makes the process of cultural interactions complicated and chaotic. It is worth noting that there does not exist any agreement on the function of culture since culture is a subtle and complicated term to define. The cultural aspect of media and global arena is an integrated marketing system of massive integration, global rights, investments as well as regulations. The force behind global powers is the market share. This acts as the principal divers to cultural globalization. This is catalyzed by swift technological changes and the elite masses who work tirelessly towards influencing the political and financial transnational corporations. The developments in technological changes have resulted to communication technologies shifting of allegiances global powers downwards to the margins of the communities. This has led to unequal global relations of power and access to cultures.

With media cultures getting to be the integration of cultures, the key resources of the means of production are the mass media. According to Appadurai (1990) there exist some tensions between cultural homogenization and cultural heterogenization. The sophistication that is evident on the contemporary global economies is related to fundamental disjuncture among the economy, cultures and politics. The introductions of mass media and technologies have impacted the market and social economies (Karlberg, 2005). The capital elite highly influence the market structures. Since the introduction of fresh systems in the productions at the time of industrial revolution, the means of production have been in the hands of capital elite. These elites control the entire as they privately own and dictate how the production process will take place. This had led to transformations in the socially-controlled economic processes.

With the introduction of market economies terminating traditional cultural values, the emergence of mass media led to homogenization of culture at the work place. This was boosted by neoliberal consensus which impacted market structures and the inevitability of the results that come with liberalization and the de-regulation that exits in the market place. This is magnified by the intensifications that arise from commercialization of cultures.

It is worth noting that the systems are highly regulated with the problems that arise being solved by the elites. The wealth seems to fully rest in few capital, political and academic elites. They have a say in what is said, how it is said and done in the nations. The masses are left to wobble in poverty.  The populaces have to helplessly stick to the price mechanism and ruling systems. The elements in the economic arena are autonomous. This makes the existing relationships almost interdependent. The hierarchical structures toppled by the dominating socialization paradigm and main mainstream Medias consists ideologies, beliefs and principles that are constituent with the elites.

It is worth noting that factors such as the trends of unemployment, magnified inequalities as well as segmental concentration of economic powers cannot be blamed for the malfunctioning of the political systems. This is despite the fact that the personal self-interests of the elites are the motivational forces. Their interest act as some built-in regulators those are crucial for sustaining the economy.

Capitalism economies go a long way in providing freedom directly. This in turn leads to freedom of the political aspects thus separating the powers in economies from political influences. In this case, the political and economic powers can easily offset each other. The economic elites keep competition as the dominance in the market is manipulated by the political elites. The state protects the economic elites against any foreign competitions. The capitalist mannerisms are biased towards fierce individualisms. These leave slim chances for collective decisions as each elite goes inn their won way.

The media culture emerged in the 19th century. This came after the mass media was introduced. The media culture has led to varied impacts, some of which are positive and others negative. This has been due to the influences of media as a result of Hollywood cultures as well as the impacts that arise due to the media elites. The world has embraced similarity in cultures.

 

 

References

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Appadurai., A. (1990). Disjuncture and Difference in the Global cultural Economy. Sage Publications. London.

Brooks, E. (2006). Cultural Imperialismvs.Cultural Protectionism: Hollywood’s Response to UNESCO Efforts to promote Cultural Diversity. Scholarly Commons at hofstra law publications. Vol 5:1

Desjardins., R. (2008). Inter-semiotic Translation and cultural Representation within  the Space of the Multi-modal text. University of Ottawa. Vol 1, 1, 48-48

Gaines, E. (2010). Media Literacy and Semiotics. Palgrave Macmillan

Ginsburg, F. (2012). “Indigenous Counterpublics: A Foreshortened History.” In Sensible Politics: The Visual Culture of Nongovernmental Activism. 562-587. New York: Zone Books.

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Strinati., D. (2004). An Introduction to Theories of Popular Culture. Routledge Publishers.

Williams, Raymond (1983). “Culture.” In Keywords: A vocabulary of culture and society. London: Flamingo.