Intro to Ethics & Social Responsibility
July 29 2014
The question that people are asking every day is media playing a responsible part in our society? The role of the media is to report the news and relay information as it happens. Almost everyone you know listens to the news either from radio, television, and or even just reading news online. Just like anyone you expect the news to provide you with accurate information. A few others ways that people expect the media to do is educate, entertain, also keeping you informed on things around your community. I for one believe that people hold the media highly accountable for the actions of others, especially in the younger generation.
One of the biggest things that everyone expects in the media is truthfulness. You want to believe a reporter or even a journalist is putting honest work out. Not just putting out untrue information just to get some media attention or even try and get there five minutes of fame. Not one person is going to believe the exact same thing so one person may report a story one way the other may choose to see it another way. So does that make them dishonest I don’t think so? But you should tell both sides of a story that way accurate and honest information is put in the media. Media has to put information out without it offending someone or violating your rights as a listener.
Although I believe the media should be honest when they are relaying information to the public, I don’t believe the media should be blamed for the amount of violence that is happening in the world today. In reading the article on Urban Violence in Brazil they seem to blame the unemployment, drugs, prostitution, and lack of government protection on the media. They believe the “Daily news reports highlighting the violent acts carried out by individuals or groups from all social classes in a detailed, sensational way.”(Pelosi,p2). They should probably put more positive information in the news, but because they don’t does that mean you have to go out and commit illegal crimes?
The practice of nonviolence should start at home by the morals and values that your parents should teach you. You should take the blame for your actions as you get older. Blaming yourself is where you start and not the media. Just because you hear about a serial killer on the news does not mean it is right or something that you go and try because they made it appear to be a cool thing to do.
When the media is airing these stories I think it would be a good idea to show the end results of what happens to all these people that commit these crimes. But most of the time after the story has run its course you never get to see what happens to the person that does the crime. You as an adult know they are being punished but the kids that see it never see or know that hey if I kill someone there is a chance I could go to jail for the rest of my life. If parents are teaching kids there are consequences for all bad actions then maybe if they see the news they will know something is going to happen to this person because they did something wrong.
The media seems to sensitize the horrible things that are in the news every time you turn on the television. This best way to explain how they handle violence in the media is explained in the article on violence in Brazil. “When the media trivializes violent acts, it attributes them a meaning that, as these reports circulate socially, induces other violent acts.” (Rondelli 1998) He believed that this in turn will translate and perceive reality and how you feel about the violence.
There are so many ethical theories that could be applied to this whole idea of media and its responsibility. But the one I feel is the closes is virtue ethics. Virtue ethics is pretty much you doing something for someone but also the intent behind what you have done. As for instance how you show your morals and values towards someone