Upon much focus and examination of the media and its effects on today’s society, I think it’s safe to say that I regard the media from a standpoint similar to many people. There is, without a doubt, a large number of issues that accompany the rapid spread of technology and the ways in which they impact society. However, I spend a great deal of time consuming media material, and am heavily reliant on it in some aspects. As media has become more predominant in our culture, there are innumerable negative consequences of media consumption and dependence that are brought about. I know I, personally, contemplate media’s effects, and whether the good outweigh the bad. Additionally, in our exposure to the media, we are often exposed to criticisms of the media. As technology has become a widespread and often unregulated tool for people around the world, the media projects criticisms of what it is in itself. It is safe to say that I face a challenge that is conflicting for many people of this day and age: I can clearly see issues with media’s dominance over our world, and have formed many of my own opinions on the matter. At the same time, I am plagued by my own reliance on the media, and the effect that taking action to change this dependence could be very impactful on my voice in society and my relations with other people.
The nature of the issue lies within the fact that the news has considerably changed and improved society in certain ways. I am grateful for the media because it offers citizens an opportunity at voicing whatever they choose to, which was not always so easy. Mediums like blogs give citizens a medium to distribute information and an opportunity for response. I appreciate how closely the media ties us together, the degree to which it allows citizens to understand current events, and the quickness of communication it allows.
The issue I have with media is broad, and is brought about for similar reasons that I appreciate the media. I believe that the true problem is not technology, but the dependence that our society has on the media. The media has changed so rapidly and become such an integral part of our lives that it becomes increasingly hard to distinguish the good and the bad. While technology connects us, a lack of technology disconnects us from one another. In a world so reliant on technology, many things become nearly impossible without this sort of communication. Overuse of technology is also very common and takes away from the time we spend living our lives. I believe that media is of vital importance, but the reliance we have on it today makes it hard for us to function without it.
The prospect of media domination is a scary one, given the amount of change we, as a society, have experienced firsthand. In my life, I have seen media follow an upward trend, and expect it to continue on that path. People are so consumed by media and technology that there is a constant hunger for new growth, and a constant competition to produce material that surpasses what is already available. It is also clear to me, first hand, how much of an improbability a decrease in media usage would be. Today, I see a society full of people who need technology and news media to make it through their day. My peers, as well as myself, are in constant need of media in order to carry out responsibilities like our schoolwork. Children are learning to use technology and interpret news media, as it has been integrated into the classroom environment, among many other mediums. In the future, I see a society that is even more reliant on technology. Children will come from a background where they see and use media constantly. It becomes a part of the world they live in, and becomes hard to regulate. My peers and I have received our education in a media dominated educational system, and media will, therefore, be vital to our careers.
The New York Times released an article earlier this year entitled, Peering Into the Future of Media. The article reinforces the ideas and concerns that I predict will be problematic in our future. The article exaggerates many of these issues, but reaches the same conclusion: learning to live, function, and work in a media dominated society will lead us into a world that is hard to live, function, or work in without media. This progression is both a blessing and a curse, and my hope is that the upward media trend will not lead to a downward spiral in society’s ability to live without it.