It is inherent within human nature to seek out meaning in life. To seek out information in order to make sense of the world. Throughout history, it has often fallen to religious institutions to provide these answers. However, today the church doesn’t hold as much influence as it once did. This creates a vacuum where people seek out different figures of authority to interpret the world for them.
It is into this vacuum that the media steps in. Setting aside the churches and shrines of the religion, we worship nightly at the altar of news media and are guided by its word. And, just like religious institutions, news corporations are run, not by all-knowing deities, but by people. People with agendas and biases and conflicts of interest. It is almost impossible today to find a news report that isn’t guided in some way, by the mediator’s own personal beliefs, either consciously or subconsciously.
This leads us to conclude that the news media is inherently untrustworthy and does not offer us a pure view of the world’s events. this is what is known as the Marxist or Hegemonic Model. On the other hand, there is a belief that, while news media is susceptible to bias, the most powerful factor in what gets reported by a majority of the media outlets is the fact that these beliefs are already widely held and therefore reporting the information in this way is giving the audience what they want. This is what is known as the Pluralist Model
in the Hegemonic Model, if news media is seen as a purveyor of knowledge and wisdom, and its message is being tainted by personal bias, what becomes of the people who are guided by that knowledge? Otherwise, in the Pluralist Model, if the dominant idea held at the time is inherently disruptive or harmful to a certain extent, is the onus on the media outlet to defy this belief, even if it could drive away their audience?