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Rationale: In class, I studied the effects of media and advertising on people, and the role that it has in shaping

the views of society. We also learned about how the media uses different techniques to help convince us to believe the message that theyre trying to convey. For these reasons, I chose to write an online debate regarding whether or not the media has a negative effect on society (Debate Topic: The media has an overall negative impact on society). I believe that this would best show my understanding of media literacy because this debate would explore the effects of media from multiple perspectives, not just one. Some of the effects that are examined in this written task include the deliberate omissions of crucial facts in news reports, and the distortion of beauty in magazines. The purpose of this project is to present contrasting views of the media in order to stimulate a debate over the medias positive and negative points. This would, therefore, show my understanding of the media in the form of responses to the debate forum. For this debate, I only chose four writers two with a positive view of the media, and two with a negative view. The limit on the number of writers is made in order to keep the debate on topic and precise. A large number of writers would typically lead to the debate veering off course onto another issue. Even though the target audience of this debate are normal Internet users, the language is kept formal in order to display the seriousness of the debate topic. Word Count: 265

Todays Debate Topic: The Media has an overall negative impact on society Definition of Key Terms: Media: any form of mass communication including, but not limited to, News coverage, advertising, and blogs. Affirmative side: Lisa5329, Maximillian98 Negative side: Robf23, SorSor9999, Debate open: September 10, 2013 Debate close: September 15, 2013 Lisa5329: September 10, 2013 16:15 PM GMT This should not even be a debate topic: The media is repulsive. They spend their days feeding propaganda to us in order to woo us into believing whatever they say. I find it absurd that anyone besides the Media themselves could argue otherwise. Robf23: September 10, 2013 16:17 PM GMT In response to the debate topic presented above, I believe that the media, as defined as the main source of news and current events, are beneficial towards society. The media has been crucial towards providing quick easy-to-access information, allowing us to know more about the world around us. The plethora of media that we can choose to read allows us to view different viewpoints of the same event thus allowing people to make their own statements based on what they read. Lisa5329: September 11, 2013 14:23 PM GMT @Robf23, You do know that many news agencies show a clear bias, right? Many media purposely omit news that does not support their stance, while exemplifying events that help sway the audience towards their position Robf23: September 12, 2013 15:00 PM GMT I will agree that all media show some sort of bias, however, I am still convinced that the media has overall been a beneficial force in society today. Just to show you why, think of how people knew about the National Security Agencys PRISM program (the program the United States Government uses to spy on people around the world) that news came out via a news website called The Guardian. If it wasnt for the media, people would never have know that the US government was doing the exact same thing that it accused other nations of doing. Biased or not, the Media has helped report on events and topics that people would never have heard of otherwise Maximillian98: September 13, 2013 16:00 PM GMT @Robf23 I hate to say this, but Id have to agree with Lisa5329 on this. The media have also been used as propaganda machines for the government. Have you forgotten about how CNN reported on the Syrian civil war? They sided with the

rebels only reporting atrocities committed by the Al-Saud regime, while ignoring the murders that the rebels themselves had committed. CNN even wrote articles supporting the use of cruise missiles for HUMANITARIAN reasons. I really cant comprehend how anyone sane could think of such a solution. Lisa5329: September 14, 2013 16:34 PM GMT Besides news outlets, media in advertising are also guilty of impacting society negatively. All of the images of women in beauty magazines are photo shopped and edited so much they dont look anything look anything like their original models. For many women, these models make up the epitome of beauty, yet, do not represent true beauty. And before I knew about the truth, I often found the pictures on the magazines to be intimidating and a reminder of what I should beand what I am not. Im also not the only woman to feel this way. Women in the US spend over $8 Billion per year on cosmetics and beauty products just so they could imitate those illusions. In the United States, 7 out of 8 people diagnosed with anorexia are women. Many of these women were influenced by the indirect messages shown by the magazines that in order to be beautiful, you have to be thin and skinny. So you see, Media in both the news and advertising sectors influence society in a bad way. SorSor9999: September 14, 2013 18:00 PM GMT @Lisa5329: I understand your point, but as a women myself, I do not feel affected badly by the media. True, some of the indirectly shown values get to me, but regardless of how much persuasion is present in the advertisements, I feel that I am solely responsible for my own actions as I have the final decision in what I do not a colored piece of paper (if some random person told me to jump off a cliff, and I do so, is it that persons fault?). The negative aspects such as the anorexia may have more to do with the persons mental stability and her way of interpreting the advertisements, rather than the advertisements themselves. In a way, the advertisements may actually be HELPING women, as the ads would encourage other women to become fit and healthy. Robf23: September 15, 2013 19:00 PM GMT I agree with SorSor9999. A person should be solely accountable for his/her own actions not where the person got the idea from. The claim that media is causing people to develop medical issues is plain hypocrisy. As much as how media uses persuasion techniques to sway audiences, each member of the audience is the one who decides on whether or not to believe what is being shown. It isnt like the media is blackmailing the audience to take in its messages. Administrator: September 16, 2013 00:02 PM GMT The Time limit for this debate has now passed. Please proceed to the voting columns to choose the winner

Sources: http://edition.cnn.com/2013/09/19/opinion/cordesman-syriaconflict/index.html?hpt=hp_c2