What Role Should The Local Media Play?

The media typically plays three roles.  In no particular order, the media plays the role of a gatekeeper, scorekeeper, and a watchdog.  The media as a gatekeeper simply means that the elites who control a particular news entity decide what gets on the air or in a newspaper.  Thus, if the story runs, it becomes news.  When the media plays the role of scorekeeper, it tends to add numbers to spice up the content of the story itself.  For instance, a reporter may tell you a story about three people injured in a crash or that stock prices dropped by 22 points.  Numbers and statistics bring life to a story.  When the media plays the watchdog, they are acting as a protector or as an investigator regarding events that might have an impact on your life.  An example would be an investigation into government corruption and how that corruption has affected your wallet or pocketbook.

Which of these roles, if any, do you expect the local media to play?  By local, we are talking about community newspapers or local radio stations.  Try not to consider large metropolitan media entities when answering this question.

11 responses to “What Role Should The Local Media Play?

  1. I think News papers should play a watch dog role, but sometimes they render their own opinions in various sections of their papers. You can’t be a watch dog and also render your won opinion in my opinion. I think papers should state the facts and let the readers decide situations. Whether they become “investigative, I dont personally care, but they need to watch out for things we don’t look for on a daily basis as a “John Q Citizen”. We all have busy lives and the papers are in a sens, a time to catch up on the things you’ve missed.

  2. Theresa Gergits

    I expect my local media to play a watchdog, which they already do. The email news alerts I receive always contain information and updates regarding crimes that have been committed, arrests that have been made, job postings and events being held in the community. It’s an easy way to access local information quickly.

  3. Zeferino Martinez

    Generally, people are not aware of what is going on politically in the community due to lack of time or interest. As a result, it is up to the community newspaper to be the watchdog. Furthermore, I believe community newspapers would be effective with the role of watchdog, because they would be able to get closer to local politicians or officials, and uncover any dirty plans or deals. In addition, community newspapers could also just start conversations on important issues or topics, which will led to the community getting involved too.

  4. Shannon Feeney

    I think that local media should play the role of a watch dog. In today’s world, people look to the media to gain information about current issues. The people don’t want to hear a story that has been altered or “fluffed” up. Instead we look for the truth. I think as a facilitator of current events, local media should have the peoples best interest at heart. Their job is to alert the public not give them a fake story.

  5. I think local media is more of the gatekeeper then any other. My reasoning behind this is they are there to pick and choose from whatever is happening within the city limits. For example, Orland Park has a news channel on tv and they are always showing town hall meetings, news about upcoming festivals, and other activities and bulletins going on in and around the city. Its not out of the ordinary to have a segment about what is happening crime-wise but its a rarity.

  6. I expect the local media to play the role of the scorekeeper. Numbers and statistics are very important to those who play the stock market, make investments, etc. Although we can easily access these things via our smart phones, internet, etc, sometimes its more comfortable for us to do these things in the privacy of our homes.

  7. i think the media should play watchdog because people need to always need to be updated and hear the truth. there job is to always keep the public aware of what is going on and not spread fake rumors they must always tell the truth,

  8. Living in Chicago, I believe my local media plays the goal of all three but most importantly they play as the gatekeeper. They bias their news strongly on what they want to get on air usually based off of their government bias. I personally think the media should be a watch dog only. It is alright for the news to spice up the information once and awhile but I think they should not bias what they show and should give the people of the area the news they deserve.

  9. When it comes to the local media. I expect the local media to communicate to the public the issues and events that have/are taking place whether in the community or around the world. The local media should provide news in an unbiased manner to make people aware of what’s happening around them. I believe that it is important for the media to look out for it’s fellow viewers and play the roles of watchdog and scorekeeper.

  10. IN the local media, I think its better that they play the role of a gatekeeper. They can choose what to air and show to the local people of a certain town. This way they can show the things that are bad, but also the good things in the news.

  11. It is necessary for local media to play the role of watchdog. Corruption must have something to keep it from getting out of hand. We as constituents of our respective local governments need to feel a sense of security.

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