Media and Deomcracy
Running any kind of media is like runnig a business house. It involves various costs and employees need to be paid salaries. So, a medium needs some ways and means to earn revenue. This can be done by various possible ways.
Revenue for media
After understanding the extensive costs that media has to incur, it is obvious to find out its sources of revenue. The major source of revenue for mass media is advertising.
Advertisements in electronic media: There are lot of advertisements regarding cars, clothes, FMCG (fast moving consumer goods), etc. that are broadcast on radio and television when we are watching news/serials/ cricket matches, etc.
Advertisements in print media: Newspapers also carry a lot of advertisements which are a source of revenue for them. These days, all leading newspapers have full page advertisements of housing projects, cars, offers in super markets, etc. on their first two pages.
Media and democracy
Since a democracy refers to the concept of of the people, by the people and for the people, the elected representatives are accountable to the people. Media plays an important role in disseminating information about events happening in the country and the world. Based on this information, people are able to understand how the government is working, how much it has fulfilled its promises and where it is lagging behind. People can express their views/ suggestions and take action against the government based on the media reports. They do this by way of:
- Writing letters to the concerned minister
- Organizing public rallies and protests
- Holding signature campaigns, etc.
The above measures are a way of asking the government to rethink its programme and decisions.
Role of Media in Balanced Information:
Since media has a significant role to play, it is very important that the information they give is balanced. A report is said to be balanced if it reveals all sides of the story so that the readers are free to think about the next course of action.
For giving a balanced report, the media has to be independent. The term independent in the context of media means that there should be no control or influence on the coverage of news by them.
In other words, nobody should have a say in what should and should not be included in a particular news report. An independent media would give reliable and unbiased news.
There is a need for the media to be non-tabloid. Tabloid media tends to sensationalize crime stories, astrology, gossips about personal life of celebrities, etc. There should be no paid news.