The media´s importance
The term mass media is applied to all media that reach a mass audience. In fact mass media have existed as long as mankind itself. But it took quite a long time to reach their present hitechnology form. There has always been a need to exchange news and messages among people and the advance of new technologies enables us to deliver information very promptly and more efficiently.
The media´s importance is rather simple – they are our source of information, easily available, complex and cheap. Through newspapers, radio and television we learn about the world around us, important inventions, new technologies and unique achievements.
Developments in technology over the past few years have led to a revolution in the field of information, never before has so much information been able to be produced, stored, used and communicated so quickly and efficiently. Indeed, many social observers and sociologists now speak of modern society in terms of the “information society“. My mass media we mean those means of communication which reach large or “mass“ audiences: the press, radio and television are probably the most important and well known means of communication today.
People like to read newspapers, journals and magazines. We want to be informed an get the latest news so most of us buy a newspaper early in the morning. We can find different sorts of articles in a newspaper: on economics, politics or social life, sports, editorials (giving the personal opinion of the editors about something in the news), features (special reports about an interesting subject, place or person), crosswords, reviews, international/domestic news, cartoons, business news, etc. Newspapers are published every day, some are even published at weekends.
Basically, there are two types of newspapers: serious papers/broadsheets (large sheet) and the tabloids (small sheet). The broadsheets are known as “quality“ papers and the tabloids are called “popular“. Quality papers are read by those readers who expect to find serious news and are ready to spend a good deal of time in reading articles written in a serious manner. The popular papers/gutter press is relatively poor when compared to that the quality paper. They contain a high number of features about stars, sports and celebrities. They tend to be heavily illustrated and the headline sometimes takes more space than the article itself.
Magazines are published once a week/month and bring international and national news, various articles and stories. Some target groups of people with special hobbies (photography, gardening,..) of different ages and genders (teenagers, women,..). Journals are serious magazines on a particular subject containing articles written by experts in that field (scientists, doctors, teachers,..).
Commercial and non-commercial group
Modern life is closely connected with radio and television as sources of information, entertainment or just bacground noise. Radio and television stations can be divided into two categories: commercial and non-commercial.
Commercial stations are supported by charging money to companies that would like their goods or services advertised on the station. Companies that pay large amounts of money to the stations for advertising will often try to control the content of the programme.
Non-commercial stations, on the other hand do not advertise products, are either financed from state budget or supported by donations, grants, or private organisations.
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