Media has existed since the day humans discovered language.
It played many rolls in shaping our history and has an innate ability to rewrite it. It is the most powerful weapon known to humans. It is the main means of mass communication, persuasion and control.
In all it’s forms, media was a weapon that existed in the hands of the few who had the ability to overcome the limitations, until recently.
Due to the technological boom in the means of communication, media took a completely different form. Many say that the power of the new media, especially the social form of it, will make a free and peaceful world; Others disagree, claiming that the new media will play a key factor in the destruction of our human civilization.
Media’s main effects on us as informed and uninformed consumers are many and they manifest themselves through our interaction with the world of entertainment; Our hypnotic relationship with the advertisement and marketing side of media and finally those effects manifest themselves in our problematic search for the truth through the chaotic news pollution that took over the digital side of media.
Through out history we idolize the famous. Either for power, wisdom or both. Musicians were profound, actors were real and leaders were respect worthy.
Media definitely was the reason for the drastic change in our hero figures. From reality TV to Jack Ass and everything that falls in between, media has transformed our society into a society that does not believe in honesty and hard work. Media made our youth believe that they deserve to be famous without any achievement of any kind. It changed the society’s heart and soul.
In the entertainment industry, you have a bigger chance at getting famous through a sex scandal than getting famous through playing symphony #9 blindfolded on a unicycle. Sex sells.
The entertainment industry is just a store front that is dedicated to make good business. What sells works. Trends, styles, even freedom is dictated by the entertainment aspect of media.
When everyone around you accept a certain ideology or a certain social order, you have two options: to be an outcast or to join the masses.
Winston Churchill once said:
“Individuals are smart. Masses are stupid.”
Have you ever walked in an old narrow alley in an old city where a bazaar sits, where people on your left and right are shouting loud, bargaining themselves, trying to give you the best deal on a product you show no interest in buying?
I have walked down that alley in Beirut and you did too, where ever you are from.
Walking down that alley becomes unbearable after a dozen shops pass by and you realize that the rest of the ride is no different.
The advertisement and marketing side of media turned our daily life into a crowded bazaar walk.
You can not take a walk, a bicycle ride or a drive without being distracted by banners and signs trying to force feed you information and commercials. Same argument applies to mail, email, newspapers, magazines, phone applications, milk bottles, grocery bags and even clothes. We live in an era that is fast, in a time that is tough. We live at a moment in the life of our planet, in which the economy is highly dependent on the cycle of production – distribution – consumption. Which makes media the most loyal partner to big corporation that have only one goal, to bombard you with a subliminal message that reads: “The more you buy, the happier you get”.
As Robert A. Heinlein said : “There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want merely because you think it would be good for him. “
The biggest effect the media has on our life is how we receive and consume news, political or social.
The news sources are countless and their authenticity is discussable. It is a struggle to retrieve true bias information. ISIS & Al Qaida have a news platform, republicans and democrats as well, communists, nazis, Israelis and Palestinians too. Everyone has a stage to recruit and persuade from. It is chaotic. We are repetitively visiting our phones trying to stay aware and informed about the world. Some argue that it’s the digital news revolution, where people will start virtual revolutions that will transform to a physical revolutions, thus changing the world. I do agree with this theory. Change is not always for the better though. The Arab spring was brought to life through social media, without Facebook, they say, the Arab spring would have not happened; True, yet the change that the Arab spring brought was devastating. Before the media decided to stop covering the Arab spring, because it went for too long and was not interesting anymore, the Arab spring was called the Arab winter…
The news became invasive, journalism lost its freedom and the truth became discreet.
But why? Why is it that the more we get advanced and connected, the more we get weak and disconnected? Because we are doing things for the wrong reasons. We are using all our powers to prey on each other. We want the benefit of our individual entities over the benefit of our human race.
We live in a time that every profit and religion warned us about.
We live in a time where people worship money.
We live in an era in which humanity is not the priority.
The internet and all it’s package opened many doors to us and gave us all the knowledge we ever harvested between our palms.
But knowledge without education is like a car without brakes. The media should be on the side of the people, it should be educating the masses, advancing our race and should not be controlled by the 0.1%.
I do not hate the media. I’m just aware that there are two kinds of media, the independent voices and the main stream media. The black and The white. The yin and the yang. The workers and the elite.
Time and patience is what we need to overcome this overwhelming period of our evolution.