Point-Counterpoint: Media Influencing the masses

Sierra Wamsley, Associate Editor

Our founding fathers wished to establish a country that protects and enforces the freedoms of its citizens. Created in order to do just that, the first amendment allows the freedom of the press and differing beliefs. However, since the creation of the first form of media, politicians and other high political figures have impacted those beliefs. This is due to the easy accessibility of media. Media is used to express ideas and opinions, and it can also be an informative source when it comes to political elections.

According to medium.com, 15% of information that affected how and when people to vote was from media sources such as magazines and newspapers. Journalists have the job of reporting on current events, especially on political candidates during the election season. Positive media encourages voters to express their opinions and influences others to actually participate in elections. 63% of media influence in the 2016 election came directly from the candidates themselves.

Throughout history, elections have been the prime method of displaying opinions for large groups of individuals. People form these opinions based off of what a candidate directly says and what the media perceives. Looking at both sides of the media develops opinions and develop an educated idea of which candidate has the same viewpoint as voters. Social media was designed to create an interactive environment for those who choose to participate. One of the popular parts of social media is how it allows every person to openly express their opinions and political viewpoints.

When it comes to media in the political field, pewinternet.org, 40% of the US population share their political views on Twitter and 65% display their views on Facebook. Throughout the United States, opinions are shared on social media sources, and media in general. This overwhelming influence expressed through internet sources allows for an opinion to be made. As teens and the rest of the population search through reliable sources, an opinion forms in the mind. Without the media, this would not have the ability to occur. Celebrities, along with news sites, help create this perspective and view by prompting their fans to join the ballots. A positive influence is born as more and more credibility is built, allowing an open mind.

“Looking at the media displayed at my fingertips gives me a good way to stay updated with candidates and their promoting,” says junior Mckenna Spraetz. “Very few people these days are not connected to the internet, especially those in America. Because everyone uses social media and other media connections, it is easier to stay on top of who is voting and the opinions of those around me.”

Through the technology that most people possess, any form of media can influence individuals, schools, and communities. The media that surrounds our daily lives opens various opinions and perspectives on major issues. Without the nationwide connection, we have today, we would not be connected to the candidates we have to vote from.