Introduction：Nowadays, with the highly development of information, the media acts as the sun, the air and the water into people’s daily life. And our students–the group of young people who are easy to accept the new things, using media resources and also accept the impact of the media at the same time. The media is a “double-edged sword”. Not only it can give us chances to view a brand-new social life, to study new learning modes and gain new ideas. But also it can affect our beliefs, our behavior patterns, cultural life and our mental state. This essay is aimed at discuss the ways of the media influence our young people’s beliefs. And give some advice on how to protect young people from the bad influence of media.
Due to the wild covering of many audience, fast-spread and unconscious influence, the mass media has many functions, for example, information-spreading, public opinion guiding, knowledge education, supervision communication and entertainment. In modern society, we gain information from the media everywhere at any time. The media has become an ubiquitous source of information. It gives us the cognition of things from different aspects and in various fields, and thus influence people’s thoughts and judgment.
As to beliefs, mass media changes our ways of thinking and living, it also promotes the transformation of personality and the formation of new beliefs through the supervision of education, dissemination of knowledge and other ways. It has positive influence. For example, the online courses enables us to learn more new interacting lessons from different schools or countries, which gives us many choices to know different ideas and promote ourselves. The lesson we learned from the online course is a component of our new beliefs. In short, the mass media, in the process of communication culture, performs its education function to us.
The negative function of mass media should not be ignored. Market-oriented media in order to seek commercial benefits, often caters for some negative and unhealthy trend of thoughts. It mixed healthy content and unhealthy culture together, and forms an undesirable social orientation through speculation which causes the complexity environment of public opinion.
The negative functions are in two aspects: first, the media tends to just cater for people’s entertainment. With the increasing competition of marketing pressure, the mass media continually produces a large number of soap operas,industrialize-produced animations and games, and a large number of pop musics which don’t have artistic value but brings the sensational effect to most of the youth, and the best-selling books-such entertainment and vulgarization of cultural products. Although this kind of snack culture adapts to the needs of people who live in fast rhythm of life, it directs the wrong orientation of the outlook on life.
According to the organization which had surveyed 2,658 teens ages 8-18, they found that 58% of respondents said they watch television every day, while two-thirds of respondents said the same about listening to music. By contrast, 45% said they use social media every day, and only about a third of those social-media users said they liked it a lot.Steyer said, ”Nearly two-thirds of teens today tell us they don’t think watching TV or texting while doing homework makes any difference to their ability to study and learn, even though there’s more and more research to the contrary.” This survey shows that most of teens don’t know that they are addicted to the media. It shows that the thoughts of teens are easy to be affected.
Second, it has the vulgar tendency. Media vulgarization is the phenomenon of the vigorous rise of entertainment in the last century since the development of the 90’s mass media marketization. With the continuous development of the mass media industry, this kind of vulgar phenomenon has become increasingly serious, it has repeatedly touched our traditional and moral lines, and even subverts our traditional beliefs. Murder, violence and sex, these vulgar, sensational information affects the young people. A typical night’s viewing might include fights in or outside of clubs, hair pulling, verbal and physical assaults on room mates or co-contestants, public drunkenness. What might be considered assult and battery by law enforcement, is now entertainment for an increasingly younger and younger audience. On the one hand, it distorts the social environment. On the other hand, some of the youth who don’t have the definition of whether the information is bad or good, may imitate these bad behaviors.
According to “Reality TV’s Impact on Bullying and Student Behavior”, the research shows that regular reality TV viewers (among aged 11-17) accept and expect a higher level of drama, aggression, and bullying in their own lives than non-viewers. A majority of adolescents believe that reality shows are real and unscripted. “Kids at a young age see what they believe is real behavior and that influences them greatly, much more so than watching a crime drama.” claimed Waldron.
What could we do to protect young people from the affects of media ? I think some advice may be useful as follow:
First,Chinese government introduces strict media crackdown on ‘vulgar, immoral and unhealthy content’.
Second, schools should help to teach teenagers the skills of searching information. Helping teenagers to get the necessary information from a vast amount of information. And help them to improve their abilities to acquire information .
Third, Students should have their judgment to figure out the useful information. And properly make good use of media, don’t be slaves of the media.
Reference：:Teens spend an average of 9 hours a day with media, survey finds – LA Times http://www.latimes.com/business/technology/la-fi-tn-teens-television-media-20151103-story.html
Reality TV’s Impact on Bullying and Student Behavior http://www.cyberbullyhotline.com/04-25-12-reality-tv.html