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General Paper Essay Outline : Real power lies with those who control the media (CJC Prelim 2015)

warning handle with care

Note : Here are just some raw ideas

Power : the ability to control and influence others

The media : platforms for mass dissemination of content

Who can control it the media : governments, businesses (How about individuals?)

On one hand, it does seem that those who control the media can have real power >> they can curate content to influence their audiences through both direct and subliminal messaging >> governments use the media for propaganda purposes, and businesses use the media to push their products.
As a major case in point, we can take note of how the entire world’s priorities, foci and perceptions are shaped by oligopolistic news providers

On the other hand, as audiences get more access to information, they become more enlightened and discerning. So the power of propaganda and marketing through the media becomes questionable.

Next, those who control media have limited power, unless they are also the government. This is because the govt can enact laws that even those who own or control the media have to abide by.

It can also be argued that while controlling the media does give some degree of power, real power also lies in the hands of those who control weapons. A simple example could be how the media can be used to propogate anti-war rhetoric and arguments. Yet, govts can still go ahead with war, and criminals and terrorists still commit acts of violence. In short, controlling media does not always have the power to make change.

In the same vein, the way the democratic political process is put on show via the media could suggest that the media is an important battle ground for campaigners. the politicians who can control the media are seen to have an advantage.

However, at the end of the day, when the media gets fogged up with confusing debate, the real power to influence lies with candidates who work the ground, meet the people personally, and impact the lives of citizens directly. In any case, even social media can be described as nothing more than an echo chamber, especially since those who are vocal online may not have the opportunity to actually vote for the party or candidate that they show suppport for.

As an extension to the discussion on individuals trying the exert influence and power using social media, it can be seen that although individuals who broadcast or publish content online may be met with either support or rejection, their ability to bypass middlemen like publishing houses or radio and television networks to bring their work to the masses can be considered a kind of personal empowerment. While they are still bound by the laws of the land, it cannot be denied that they have some degree of power to control their destiny, manage their own talents and extend their personal sphere of influence using social media.


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