November 2, 2014
Influence of Visual Media Paper Visual media has shaped our American culture and influenced our values in many ways. Television, radio, movies, games and the Internet has become part of almost every person’s everyday lives. More than fifty years ago the television was invented and known to be the access to what was going on in the world, a luxury to us. With that, television brought us through the civil rights movement, wars, and other controversial issues throughout the years. Since then, electronic media has grown tremendously and has transformed nearly every aspect of our lives both positive and negatively. What has allowed visual media to take over the world the way it has. The answer is money. Major television networks in America are in the business to make money. Unfortunately, these networks sell sex and violence that attracts large audiences and in return makes them a lot of money. Also, people seek pleasurable entertainment and immediate gratification which visual media provides to them. This allows them to escape the cares and worries of their lives. However, these influences have changed our behavior in society and have lead to consequences especially in our children. Over the past several decades, the violence we see on television has influenced our children more than we know. For instance, researcher James Hamilton notes that “large literatures exist on the impact of television violence on society…the laboratory evidence firmly establishes that violence on television causes children to be more aggressive…children learn scripts of behavior from television that lead them to be violent later in life” (Channeling Violence, pp. 6, 30). As a matter of fact, more than a thousand studies have established links between television violence and behavior that emerges later in life (U.S. News & World Report, 1995). These acts of violence our children learn can and have lead to violent acts. For instance, more than ever children are bringing guns to school and are killing their peers and others that get in their way without even thinking about the consequences, or so it seems. Other children have acted out a scene from a movie by wearing a mask like the movie character and killed a classmate with a machete. These are just a few examples of serious implications our society has endured from violent television, movies, games, and YouTube videos.
Another implication of visual media is sexual content. Although Hollywood movie makers that this is what society wants, it definitely influences the values of our society. This portrayal of