Mass Mediated History

Abstract: 

A journalist is basically a chronicler of events as they unfold. In the process he/she makes the first draft of history, which history may come to the use of a professional historian to record the events objectively and bequeath to the future generations. New technologies have made journalist’s task easy but the rise of media empires and the subsequent formation of culture industries have made his/her job complex at the same time. Since media empires or cultural industries are primarily driven by profit motive and a desire to set the agenda – economic, political, social, cultural, etc., - journalists come under increasing pressures to compromise objectivity and truth. Accordingly at times the mediated history that is produced in the newsroom is a distorted version of reality out there. This is especially so in times of conflict and war. Some media critics goes on to the extent of saying that media is also a maker of war. Media assumes the self-appointed role of actors or agents in the events and processes which they purport only to be reporting. To that extent the media themselves have had an impact on the course of historical events, and been a significant ingredient in their development. This becomes evident when one considers carefully the major historical events of the twentieth and early twenty-first century.

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