Is Modern Media Ethical?

Tom Cooper wrote an article depicting the factual evidence of people’s perspectives of the media. Now, there is a variety of media: Internet, tele, journalism, video game, cell phones, and more. After reading his inspirational piece, I went to interview five different people. Two were students in different parts of Massachusetts. One was a middle-aged woman named Donna Sherman, living in Worcester and two elderly couple who still follow up on the recent technology. I started out by relaying how ethics is the principles of a persons’ behaviour that is conducted by recognition by a set of a culture’s view of righteous. Using Cooper’s idea of asking a list of eight different categories and getting their issues. The topics were: television, Internet, video games, films, telephones, audio, print, and photography. Obviously not everyone can participate in all the categories such as the grandparents knowing too much about video games. However, I brought up these categories and simply asked them do you think today these certain medias are on an ethical standard that is appropriate. Each one answered, having different backgrounds at different ages, having a similar idea that the media has become less accurate, not appropriate for adolescence, and that there is too much negativity being spread. Credibility is the most important part of news, photojournalism, Internet articles, and so forth. In modern society were technology is prominent, there is the fear of fraud, hacking, biased opinions to persuade a viewpoint, and the privacy of everyday people. The two students that were interviewed both distrusted media such as news and Internet articles. They both were very tech savvy, but had more faith is a book then any article that could have been altered. As Katie Hummer, one of the students, said, “It is hard to tell what is reality versus someone making up lies. Something that was built for a educational truth such as Wikipedia now can be altered by any young foolish kid that wants to just leave a silly joke.” Cooper took a poll and in 2006 and had 4% agree with the inaccuracy of media. Anyone can access the Internet and people have the ability to say what they would like as long as they are persuasive. Since it is easy access for anyone, which would mean children could access. Today adolescents are exposed to more then only a couple decades did. Three of my interviewees are over 50 years old and all proclaim, yes there was some rebellion in their age, but they were not introduced to violence, the sexual impulsions, and the negativity so early in life. . Elaine Sherman, now 80 years old, irritated explained her view of children, “The kids of today can be just as clever and sweet as anyone back when I was young, but they have so many distractions of this time that their brains are being filled with nonsense instead of knowledge.” Donna Sherman proclaimed this to be true in her interview and gave the example that she saw a 6 year old googling new words she learned on her own iPhone while her mother was grocery shopping. This “nonsense information could be considered as profanity, pornography or violence. Violence is a huge concern to people, especially parents. Cooper also polled a group’s ideas of video games as got some calculations, “Three of the four most highly ranked concerns about video games raise ethical issues: violence (“vio- lence/killing cops”) 47%, interactive violence (“being a sniper”) 9%, and causing problems in the society (“causes violence”) 7%.” Today young growing figures, and I include myself in this generation, are being persuaded whither slightly or abruptly to view things very differently then what are ethical standards believed a century ago. Violence, sexual perfections, and lying create negativity into the world. Not every single media company will do these things. There are some wonderful reliable journalists, editors, photographers, and creators, technicians that are truthful to their moral rights. However, the amounts that are going against the ethical standards of society have been increasing which creating negativity throughout the society. Violence is being broadcasted more commonly on the news then good deeds. Advertising has become more sexual wither is be putting a pear next to a bikini, women thin as a twig in high heels semi nude, or a man with oversized muscles and long locks. The sexuality is creating a “perfect image” for the people. Lastly, and more prominent is the lying. It is something that we hear and when we learn a fact is untruthful, it is complicated to gain the trust back. The world has changed greatly from what it was decades ago with technology, expansion of international borders, entertainments. That is why Cooper knows that his polls and ratings will need to update frequently because as he writes, “Polls may reflect the national mood for only a week, month, year, or decade.” In this modern word the media is still our entertainment, but it is drastically setting a negative ethical boundary on the growing world. Resources: Cooper, T. (2008). Between the Summits: What Americans Think About Media Ethics. Journal of Mass Media Ethics, 15-27. Sherman, Donna. Media Law and Ethics [Interview]. (n.d.). Taing, Melissa. Media Law and Ethics [Interview]. (n.d.). Hummer, Katie. Media Law and Ethics [Interview]. (n.d.). Sherman, Elaine. Media Law and Ethics [Interview]. (n.d.). Sherman, Jack. Media Law and Ethics [Interview]. (n.d.).


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