The Instigator
Kamila
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
imabench
Con (against)
Winning
6 Points

The people have no control over the media

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
imabench
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/22/2012 Category: Society
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,214 times Debate No: 20567
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (5)
Votes (2)

 

Kamila

Pro

The people have no control over the media. 1.) What is shown to the audience is not chosen by the audience, but by the "gatekeeper" according to Kurt Lewin's theory. The concept involves a gatekeeper, the person who holds all the information and has most influence, goes through a process of decisions and choose what information would be let out past the gate. There are gatekeepers in social systems of a community. These gatekeepers choose what information should be put out to the citizens and control the peoples' knowledge of what stories they should and should not be viewing. The gatekeepers in media control what is going out to the community, they have the power and control on what is viewed.

1.) http://communicationtheory.org...
imabench

Con

The Pro is offering evidence that people have control over the media through his gatekeeper example.
As the Con I will offer evidence showing that the media in some cases cannot always be controlled by the people.

I am guessing that by "control" we are referring to the selective choosing of news articles that is broadcasted through media outlets...

Now gatekeepers are often the editors of major newspapers and tv news shows that choose which stories get broadcasted and which stories do not. I will offer two arguments against this theory on why the media cannot always be controlled by these gatekeeprs

1) Public demand for a story can force the media to give stories about the news people want to hear
2) Not all media sources are hierarchies where a select few people get to control what is revealed and what is not revealed.

1) The biggest example of why gatekeepers cannot limit all the news came in one particular presidential election in the 1990's. A man named Bill Clinton, who was rumored to having some affairs with many women during hsi time as governor. Now most media outlets at the time did not care for the sexual affairs of Bill Clinton, much like how they didnt want to share the sexual affairs of JFK or Elanor Roosevelt. But this time, public curiosity on this matter combined with increased access to media outlets and an interest in what was considered just trash media grew to such proportions that media outlets who gave information about the topics that interested the public recieved much higher ratings than other news sources.

http://www.enotes.com...

Prior to the 1990's Americans lived and breathed on what Televisions and Newspapers printed and announced, because back then there were Gatekeepers for everything and they determined what interested the public. But as time passed and the internet came, the public began to decide what they were interested in, and media sources could not fight it and eventually they caved in showing how even mighty gate keepers cannot control the entire media.

2) If you look on the DDO forums right now under news, you will find news. But what you find there are topics that you probably wont find on NBC or ABC. In DDO alone you can find stories about Malaysian leaders getting away with Sodomy, The SOPA Act, etc that you probably have not heard on your nightly news station. That is because DDO forums, like countless numbers of other online internet sources, allow for the people to freely look up information of their interest, not of the Gatekeepers, and then those people also have the ability to bring attention to the news story through forum posts, Facebook uploads, etc.

People cannot control the media since modern technology has allowed for people to follow their own interests to find news and since modern technology has allowed other media sources to broadcast anything that be considered news and do it without censorship from a Gatekeeper or an Editor.
Debate Round No. 1
Kamila

Pro

I see you have mentioned that gatekeepers, such as NBC or ABC, essentially do not control the media but actually just base it off what the audience is interested in. You also mentioned someone like Bill Clinton. But Bill Clinton's sex scandal was one of the top stories on the news. This was because the media picked it out and had the power to show it to the viewers. But without the media(gatekeepers) putting out information the audience will have nothing to view.

1.) The media has the control and power to chose what is shown to the viewers. The media just knows what will be most important to them, even if they all don't have the same views.

1.) On that note the agenda setting theory helps prove that. McCombs and Shaw investigated in presidential campaigns in 1968, 1972, ad 1976. They used their agenda setting theory to prove that candidates altered their messages based on what they believed the voters thought were important. This theory generally describes that the media picks out what they think will be most important to the viewers, not all the viewers will have agreement or the same reaction, but the media knows that all viewers will feel it is important. The agenda setting theory would apply perfectly to the modern day story of Casey Anthony. In July 2008 Caylee Marie Anthony, two years old, was reported missing in Florida. In December of that year, her body was found in the back of her grandparents' house. This story was on the news every week keeping viewers updated on the upcoming evidence. After all of the evidence the mother, Casey Anthony, was put on trial and prosecutors sought the death penalty. Six weeks after jury found Casey innocent. Some agreed with the conviction and others protested out of the courthouse. Time Magazine described the case as "the social media trial of the century". The media gave the story to the viewers because they knew that it was an important, top story. This theory states that the media picks out what is chosen, not the people. The media just knows what the audiences think will be an important topic.

http://www.utwente.nl... clusters/Mass Media/Agenda-Setting_Theory.doc/
imabench

Con

We cold argue all day that Gatekeepers control what the public wants to see and that the public searches for what they want to see. It is like the chicken and the egg since no one knows which came first....

Or do we?

"But Bill Clinton's sex scandal was one of the top stories on the news. This was because the media picked it out and had the power to show it to the viewers"

Bill Clinton's sex scandal was a big deal, but the public wanted news about it and there are records showing how media broadcasts resisted showing news about the scandal
http://www.unc.edu...
http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://www.drudgereportarchives.com...
http://cassandra2004.blogspot.com...
http://journalism.about.com...

Media outlets didnt want to offer news of the Lewinsky scandal, but the internet put it out there anyways and the public just ate it up. Media sources dont control what people want to see, they cater to them. This is the Eureka moment for when the internet and other technologies came along that saturated the news with all kinds of stories, at this point the public, just like they did in the 1990's went after the news stories that they wanted to see and traditional news sources now had to cater to their needs.

Take the Casey Anthony story, that story was broken by local tv sources in Orlando reporting about the missing child and it soon entered the internet. Meanwhile regular TV news giants didnt pick up on the story of the disappearance until after the public began eating up the story online. Then TV giants started reporting on the search after Casey Anthony's stories and claims went public (via the internet too) until the body of the toddler was found, at which point the story blew up.

The pattern today, thanks to sources like the internet, is that the public chases after stories they want to hear and if a story is big enough it will then be reported through traditional large scale media sources as they cater to the demand of the public.

The people can exercise control over the media and find articles and news stories they want to hear about and any story that does get enough attention is then picked up by the national media to satisfy demand for information on the story. The media does not control the viewers interest, they cater to it. We see this through the Monika Lewinsky scandal and the Casey Anthony story that captured the public's attention before big name media sources reported it.
Debate Round No. 2
Kamila

Pro

You mentioned that the Casey Anthony story didn't blow up by other news channels until after the fact. Without the media those other places wouldn't even know about Casey Anthony and her child. Therefore, the media had control of what was being put out and viewed.

1.) In Noam Chomsky's Manufacturing Consent, he explains the government control over the media. He says that media works as a business that uses control to allow what is put out into the public. The government wants a steady and non-chaotic system to the media and wouldn't want anyone to lash out against them. There are three elements in this theory: a covert goal, a deception strategy, and a manipulated outcome. During WWII the Nazi party took over the media. They controlled what was viewed, said, and done. They did not allow anyone to go against what they wanted to be brought out to the people. The theory explains that the government must present illusions to certain media so there is no chaos. They produce stories that will interest all in order to get money. The theory states that the people have no control over the media they are viewing. Some of it may not be the full information either. The government can control what is being put out there for their own benefit by profit or because they don't think the public should know.
imabench

Con

1) Monica Lewinsky Example
Forfeited after I showed the internet presented a story not displayed by the media that the public fed on, causing media sources to present news on the story to cater, not control, what people want to see.

2) Casey Anthony Example
The Pro argues that the media presented the story so it doesnt count. But the problem with that false logic is that the media did not feed that story to the national public. Local television only reported on the event as a current event, and as the public grew more and more interested it then began to be picked up by national news who then reported on the story to cater to, not control, what people want to see.

3) The Internet as a hole that presents all information to the public
Completely ignored

4) Government controls the Media
"The government wants a steady and non-chaotic system to the media and wouldn't want anyone to lash out against them"
Look at television today, particularly Fox News. Now if governments want to control the media so that people wont lash out against them, then why does Fox News still exist? Fox News criticizes Barack Obama, Congress, the FED, Obama again, etc. every day. Comedy Central has comedians that sh*t on the government all the time, even the History Channel shows stuff about government conspiracies, lies, failures, and cover-ups. How could we live in a society today where the government controls the media to prevent backlash if every time I turn on the TV all I see is people sh*tting on government? Freedom of speech is the most sacred right here in America so to assume that the government in this country controls the media to rotect themselves is completely contrary to reality.

5) Nazi Germany controlled the media
Nazi Germany controlled the Media in Nazi Germany, they controlled the media in territories under the control of Nazi Germany, their ability to limit the press was isolated to those areas under the control of Nazi Germany. If in some warped concept America was suddenly like Nazi Germany where all the media was controlled, a single government can only limit the media in the part of the world they control.

In WWII, the media was limited in Germany, but everywhere else in Russia, England, Canada, the US, Australia, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, India, and the rest of the world the media was still free as ever. 70 years later now we have far more sources to find news and more technologies to give us access to news stories that the people can access news stories wherever they want, and choose to look into whichever stories they find interesting....

Point is, only if the world was controlled by fascist governments comparable to Nazi Germany (which is not), only if governments control the media to prevent themselves from looking bad to the public (which is also false), and only if technologies like the internet didnt exist (which it does) could the media be outside the people's control, but its the media that caters to us, not controls us.
Debate Round No. 3
Kamila

Pro

1.) You say that the government has no control in the media and that they do no prevent things from going out to the media. If so why do conspiracy theories come about? Because people believe that the government, which has some control of what is shown to the public, isn't telling all the information or the truth. For example, the assassination of John F. Kennedy. It is still to this day the most controversial case in American history. People developed dozens of theories because the government hasn't shown the documents to the people. The government has the control not to put out these documents into the media. Even though the audience wants to see them, we have no control of it, the government does.

2.) Yes, the Internet does provide information. That doesn't mean that information isn't altered by what the media believes should be known.

America media is filled with manipulation, plagiarism, and propaganda. Do the audiences want these things? NO they do not. There are biases in the news, which is controlled by the media.
imabench

Con

1) "You say that the government has no control in the media and that they do no prevent things from going out to the media" - I said the government has no control over the media because, following your claim, if the government DID control the media then there wouldnt be public denounciations against them, which I showed was completely false.

" If so why do conspiracy theories come about? Because people believe that the government, which has some control of what is shown to the public, isn't telling all the information or the truth" - There are numerous reasons people think have conspiracy theories,
- 1 - Some people are naturally dumbasses (Leader of Iran thinking the Holocaust is a lie)
- 2 - Some people ignore basic facts about the events (9/11 conspiracy nuts)
- 3 - Some people naturally think there is a much grander scheme behind events (People who think the Iraq War was for oil)
- 4 - Some people think that honest mistakes imply a huge government conspiracy (perfectionists)
- 5 - Some people always think the government is hiding something just because people think that...

Just because there are conspiracies doesnt mean they are always right and that the government controls all the media...

"Yes, the Internet does provide information. That doesn't mean that information isn't altered by what the media believes should be known."
So then every blog in the world, every youtube video, every viral video, every debate here on DDO, every forum post here on DDO is altered by the media to try to brainwash us.....

"America media is filled with manipulation, plagiarism, and propaganda" - No duh, but that doesnt mean people recklessly and thoughtlessly believe whatever they hear like you claim they do. People are smart enough to know when a media outlet is giving a biased point of view on things, and then those people can go to other sources of information (INTERNET) and find unaltered stories and articles about news that interests them. Again, anything that interests people is then reported by the media because they cater to our interests, they do not control them.

If the new argument about how people dont have any control over the media is because all media sources are biased, then I invite the Pro to explain how all tv news stations give biased views of information and that somehow the media alters information on the internet to also fit their biased perceptions...

(Please note that all other arguments were dropped and the Pro has yet to offer any solid evidence that the media controls all the people's interest in news or that the government controls the entire media.)

"People developed dozens of theories because the government hasn't shown the documents to the people"
And what would those documents be?

" The government has the control not to put out these documents into the media."
Even if the government does not release documents, there is a huge difference between keeping secrets and controlling the entire media and all information
Debate Round No. 4
Kamila

Pro

1.) Tv shows and news channels do give biased information out. This not only plays a part of what IS reported but what ISNT reported. Why is it that you see more young white women reported missing on the news rather then young black women? Not because that is what the audience wants, it is because the bias in the news. The website bellow gives you dozens of examples of bias in the news.
1.)http://www.akdart.com...

2.) "People developed dozens of theories because the government hasn't shown the documents to the people"
2.a)The documents I was speaking of was towards my example of the JFK case. To this day no one knows the details of the case.

3.) " The government has the control not to put out these documents into the media.
Even if the government does not release documents, there is a huge difference between keeping secrets and controlling the entire media and all information"
3a.) I believe there is no difference in keeping secrets and controlling media information. A secret is something that is or is kept secret, hidden, or concealed. Which is what the media is doing. Certain information is hidden and concealed without the audiences' knowledge.

The media does in fact control people in society. The news we listen to is controlled by the media. What we watch is controlled by the media. The media does fed off our behavior, but it is their influence in which we react with that particular behavior. The media portrays certain things in ads that make us, the audience, behave in a certain way. The media does not put things out like skinny models and half naked women in magazines because everyone in the world wants to be 100 pounds and half naked. The audience sees what the media is feeding them, and reacts to it. In reality, is the media giving what the people want or is it that the media gives out the information first, collect the audience's reaction, and therefore make further broadcasting.
imabench

Con

Dropped Arguments
1) Gatekeeper argument
2) The internet as a source of information for people
3) That public demand for a story can force media outlets to provide information about it
4) That the government cannot control the media since the media attacks them almost daily
5) How even if a government did control the media there is always nations elsewhere where this is not the case
6) That conspiracy theories dont imply that that the media must be under government control
7) That the media doesnt alter information on the internet since they flat out dont have the means to

As for the arguments the Pro actually provided
1) TV Bias
Just because some shows are biased doesnt mean that people still cant find the truth. Look at MSNBC and FOX, two of the most biased media sources out there, one is die hard conservative, the other is all out liberal. What one source doesnt reveal the other source headlines, and vice versa. Media Bias doesnt mean that information is withheld unless ALL media outlets all have the SAME bias, which just flat out isnt the case.

TV is biased, but not all TV shows are biased, and even if you dont believe that there are other news sources people can use to get actual facts (newspapers, radio, INTERNET)

2) The JFK Conspiracy means the government controls the Media
"To this day no one knows the details of the case."

JFK Was shot twice on Nov 22nd 1963
One hit him in the back, the other in the head
The rifle that fired the gun was a Carcano Rifle
The Rifle had been fired three times
The Rifle was the property of Lee Harvey Oswald
His DNA was found on the Gun
He was an employee in the building
He was shot days later by Jack Ruby
Conspiracy theorists still doubt the truth

So what exactly is missing?

3) Government secrets
If the governemtn keeps secrets, it does not mean they are controlling the entire Media, and the Pro still believes that despite giving no reasonable argument on why. Take Area 51, the government routinely denies its existence and has never revealed any information about it, yet there are movies and novels and reports and references to it all the time because the media is not controlled by the government. The Media doesnt conceal facts, they sometimes just ignore it.

The Pro keeps saying how the government can control the media or how the media is immune to what people want to hear, but the plain truth is that the government cannot control the media and that the media cannot control all information. Internet sites such as Wikileaks always gives out information and online forums like the ones here on DDO dont go through any media manipulation that the Pro claims is real. It may have been true in the past that people couldnt control the media, but now that the media has grown so large with so many different opinions and technology always reveals new ways to get factual information, the media caters to us, they do not control us

I thank the Pro for a very fun debate and I thank the voters for reading :)
Debate Round No. 5
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by SuburbiaSurvivor 5 years ago
SuburbiaSurvivor
Con started off by arguing Pro's case for him... Not a good start.
Posted by imabench 5 years ago
imabench
your opening argument is all about how gatekeepers control the media though
Posted by Kamila 5 years ago
Kamila
I am argueing people cannot control the media.
Posted by imabench 5 years ago
imabench
Nevermind, I thought I saw you say something but I must have imagined it, my bad Ill post my arguments soon
Posted by imabench 5 years ago
imabench
Kamila, which position are you taking over this matter because you are Pro that the media cannot be controlled but your opening argument regarding gatekeepers implies you are arguing that people CAN control the media, hence your would be Con people have control over the media....

Are you arguing people CAN or CANNOT control the media
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by trippledubs 5 years ago
trippledubs
KamilaimabenchTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Good arguments on both sides. Con presented a better case and using DDO was a good way to illustrate alternative non-hierchical sources of information.
Vote Placed by BlackVoid 5 years ago
BlackVoid
KamilaimabenchTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro dropped well over half the arguments in the debate round. In R5 only 3 of 10 arguments were responded to. Extending all those arguments = Con win.