Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Thursday, November 23rd, 2017

The Key Role of Media

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The Key Role of Media

Media plays a crucial role around the globe. It generates public awareness, support freedom of speech and democracy. People are widely involved in news, reports, movies, etc. and imagining modern life without media seems horrible. Modern technologies have changed the world into “the global village” and people need to know about issues going on around the word. Nations communicate and exchange their views and cultures through the media. Access to the media and information is considered one of the citizens’ basic rights.
Media supports democracy through supervising state’s activities and reflecting them to nation. On the other hand, nation can convey its messages to state and officials via media. In addition to means of information and awareness, it is also means of nation-state communication. For instance, nation needs to know about the enforcement of law by the state, and officials need to be sure whether or not the law is practiced rightly by nation. In modern world, where nations share organic relations, the social, political and economic issues in a country affect the entire region. Take, for example, terrorism, which is one of the highly challenging issues in our century. When a country suffers from terrorism and militancy, its neighboring countries will also be prone to insecurity. All these issues are transferred by media to the public.
Similarly, freedoms of thought and speech without media will be meaningless. When one’s rights and liberty are violated, people are supposed to raise their voice through media. More importantly, the key role of social media in reflecting people’ thoughts and feelings is beyond doubt. Individuals express their thoughts freely and share their happiness and sadness with their friends. Besides posting their memories, they are able to post informative pages and writings. Individuals have their say on Facebook and Twitter about social and political issues and satirize officials for their shortcomings. Currently, people are able to organize demonstrations in social media in some countries, including Afghanistan. In short, social media provides a safe and free ground for citizens to express their thoughts. Therefore, some countries fear social media and seek to prevent or restrict public access to it.
Media also plays a role in promoting security situation in a country. For example, Afghanistan is threated with mounting terrorism and militancy. Media has to report the issue to both nation and state to keep them updated about the threat so that the state finds out the insecure zones and tackles the issue accordingly. Moreover, media should provide a platform for religious scholars to denounce terrorist activities and enlighten the ugly face of terrorism from religious perspective. On the other hand, media can portray the demands of terrorist groups to government and convey their messages with the aim of facilitating peace talks. The third President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson said, “were it left for me to choose whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without government, I shall not hesitate a moment to choose the latter.”
To better understand the social role of media in a society, think of its impact on public morale. The media can spread both hope and disappointment in the air. It will hurt people emotionally and shatter their hope and confidence via reflecting tragic issues, murder and the cruel activities, violence and bloodshed carried out by terrorist groups. Through maximizing the magnitude of threat verbally, media will fill the air with a strong sense of fear and panic. On the contrary, media will enhance public confidence via reflecting positive issues coloring them with hope and optimism.
In terms of economic issues, today’s gigantic companies, including film-making companies, and institutions seek to get public attention and find a way to customers’ hearts by advertising gimmicks. The role of flamboyant and colorful marketing for attracting customers’ attention is highly significant. Hence, media is also means of marketing for company-owners, private educational institutions, actors, dancers, etc.
Media’s strong influence in cultural sphere is undeniable. Nations are able to exchange their cultures via media. Today, cultural invasion is a matter of great concern for religious societies. Religious figures and traditional parents in Asia are sensitive towards western culture, since it is not in accordance with their religious values, moral standards and social norms. They are worried about their children’s susceptibility to foreign culture which is reflected by televisions and internets. In brief, the strong influence of media in private and social life and in, political, cultural, economic and social spheres is crystal clear. No one can downplay the role of media in a society and its impact in their daily life. Whether the role of media is constructive or destructive in a society, it is the readers to judge.

Sakhi Danish is the newly emerging writer of the Daily Outlook Afghanistan. He can be reached at the outlookafghanistan@gmail.com

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