Press Freedom in the 21st Century

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Press Freedom in the 21st Century

In this new age of globalization, media is playing a vital role in diminishing distances. Media is a vigorous tool of both information and entertainment and above all is an essential source of contemporary knowledge. The media act as the mirror of the society which highlights both the positive and negative sides of the society we are living in. The content shared through media can be deeply influential on the minds of many common individuals.

Hitler in Germany and Mussolini in Italy tried to control the media and forced media persons to glorify the Nazis and their triumph but what they created was chaos which leads to events like the holocaust and spread of anti-Semitism and eventually to World War 2. During the Nazi rule the ministry of public enlightenment, headed by Joseph Goebbels, ensured that the Nazi message was successfully communicated through art, music, theatre, films, books, radio, educational material, and the press. Goebbels goal was to manipulate and deceive the German population and the outside world.

The legendary media theorist, Marshal McLuhan, coined the term ‘The global village’ to indicate the mass production and the mass consumption of media images and content across the world. Media impact on common people following it is quite manipulative. People make their opinions based on the type of media content they are seeing and following. When it comes to media freedom a country with controlled media often create doubts in the minds of common citizens which makes them one dimensional and outlooks solely based on one-sided media content is dubious. In contrast, those countries whose citizens are having access to free media are more likely to be open-minded and creative. Those following free media content are keener to accept dissident opinions and opposing views. On the other hand, people following censored media images are less tolerant of opposition.

Powerful governments often use media to spread certain content in order to strengthen their hold on the country. In this way, people who have no access to free media are highly motivated to work alongside the current governing bodies whether for their benefit or not. Ruling political parties also hijack the countries media to justify their heinous activities. When common citizens cannot make their opinion and choices openly, they end up electing the worst of the leader, all because of programs broadcasted on media channels and followed by ordinary citizens who in turn get affected by media personals.

The 21st century saw tremendous addition to media technologies. The invention of the internet shook the entire foundations of media censorship. With the advent of social media and various networking sites, people from all across the globe can have access to media material with more freedom. The 21st-century humans have many choices on the table, they can easily look at both sides of the coin at the same time.

Unfortunately, all these fresh inventions go in vain when those with limited knowledge still blindly follow and believe what is said on the T.V rather than making enquiries of their own they are forced in a blind manner to worship one-sided media content. With their eyes wide open, they cannot see. Once the evil of blindly following a certain media outlet is eradicated we will eventually have a society which is free from all chains. Freedom of speech, expression, the press is only possible once we liberate our media. Biased media content kills creativity and enslaves societies.

In order to break the chains, we are trapped in we must strive to liberate our media from all corners. The impact it has on the hearts and minds of the people is vast. The opinions it creates has an even larger influence in global policymaking. The world which we are living in can become tranquil when the modes of domination are exposed to common individuals. The choices we make are to some extent influenced by the type of media outlet we are regularly following. The only way to unveil truth is for the media organizations to reconsider the fact that they are being watched, followed and recommended.

A society comprised of controlled minds is a society doomed; similarly, a society composed of creative and free individuals is the one subject to prosperity and long-lasting stability. The importance of media freedom must be taught at school and colleges to educate young generations of the impact media has on their thoughts and minds. Moreover, exposing youth to these realities will enhance their creative skills and most significantly will not make them slaves of their T.V sets following this mode; they can help create a more thriving society.

As discussed above the Nazi propagandist often targeted youth audiences because they knew that if Nazism was going to be everlasting, they would need to look to the future, the children. The message directed towards the school children was that the party was a movement of the youth: dynamic, resilient, forward-looking, and hopeful. German people were won over to Nazism in the classroom mainly and through extracurricular activities.

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