Today most people get the newest information from mass media - written, broadcasted, or spoken information sources that reaches a large audience. lainaa heti tilille That means the mass media somehow influence the way people think and behave, but does that also means media runs the whole world and has ultimate power over the whole society? What is an actual role of mass media in today’s society and how does it affects the people? Scientists have carried out many researches and there are many different theories. Here are the basic theories of mass media influence on society.


The oldest one is limited effects theory. That means the effects of mass media are minimal and people still can have their own opinion. Although mass media really can reach large audience and people mostly use them as main information sources, they still have a choice between many different sources and they don’t trust in mass media unless they believe in the information because of personal reasons. Scientists who believe in this theory claims that people more relay on their personal experience, prior knowledge and their own reasoning not mass media announcements, however, this research was carried out almost 70 years ago, when the influence of mass media really was a lot more minimal. Nowadays the situation has changed dramatically.


Next one is the class dominant theory. That means there are some people who own and control the corporations that produce media and they have power over those who consume this media kulutusluottovertailu Basically, that means few people can control the entire society, because they are the only ones who can produce information. It is true, that the ones who runs and owns mass media really has a huge power and they impact the way people think and behave, but this theory is still exaggerated. Society nowadays is not so easy to manipulate with, because there are other information sources and independent journalists, who can tell the truth and people will still have a chance to choose what to believe in and what not. Again, this is a theory that might be true some longer time ago or in certain circumstances, but in modern world it is not really topical any more.


The third one is culturalist theory. This is the newest one. It combines the both previous theories and is most likely one. It claims that people create their own meanings out of the images and messages they receive from the mass media. That means society has an active role in creating mass media. Although media is still ran and owned by the small group of people and mass media can not be considered as truly reliable and independent, the owners of the media are not able to manipulate with society, because they choose what to watch or read, what to believe and how to use this information in further processes. People use mass media, but they can compare different sources and pass the information further as they see it, so mass media doesn’t have ultimate power anymore.



So mass media really is not that reliable and do supplies the society with information that is convenient for them, but nowadays there are so many information sources that people can still get the truth out of it. People can choose what to believe in and can use only the information sources they rely on.