The Media’s Roles

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 believe is the most important role that the media plays?

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51 responses to “The Media’s Roles

  1. Katie Peterson

    I would say that the media is helpful for all three. Of course the audience won’t get every bit of the truth because the media is always bias in some form, and through means of communication things do get twisted and people have opinions. The scorekeeper helps us because we then get a small understanding of who’s ahead or what the outcome might be. The gatekeeper will always depend on the media. What those groups chose to give us is what their opinions are based off of, or what is completely necessary to the public. As the watchdog, media at times goes overboard with what will truly impact us and what will not;however, this is somewhat the same as the gatekeeper. Depending on the groups political standpoints, we will only be shown what they believe actually matters based on their political group. Media plays a huge part in politics, but its important to look at various resources rather than just one news station, etc. So that we get atleast a little more of an idea of the politicians

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