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The Six Political Functions of Media

Media plays a crucial role in the dissemination of information from the power-elites to the masses in the United States. Americans today consume news information largely through the use of television, and to a lesser extent newspapers and radio. Those who control the information presented in these mediums enjoy a wealth of influence in relation to the political and social values of ordinary Americans. Elites within the industry accomplish their mission of political and social influence by utilizing the six political functions of mass media; news making, interpretation, socialization, persuasion, agenda setting and framing.

“News making is deciding what and who are newsworthy and allocating precious television time and newspaper space accordingly.” (Dye & Zeigler, p. 125) Executives, editors, anchors and the like make crucial decisions in regards to which stories make the headlines or are featured during news casts. Given that the average American does little to no research of their own, the decisions made by these media elites are instrumental in the formulation of public opi…

 

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