Something that stuck with me from last class was the last definition posted from a previous class for “what is news.” It more or less said that news is anything created by a media outlet. I immediately had some disagreements with this definition. The word “created” seems to imply that the media outlets actually make the news. In a literal sense, the definition is saying the media is responsible for the wars, the crimes, the politics, the celebrity gossip and basically anything else that is presented through them. But these events weren’t created. They happened. The media reported on them happening. And they would happen even without media outlets.
But then I started thinking: would some events really happen? If newspapers, television, blogs, radio and the like didn’t exist, would we still have news? There would probably still be war, there would still be deaths and still be economic troubles. But some situations might fall by the wayside without media. Would politicians still try to tear down their opponents if they couldn’t let everyone in the country know about it? Would celebrities still give their children outlandish names if they knew there wouldn’t be some sort of public feedback? Maybe not.
When you really look at it, the media does have some effect on the creation of news. They may not make events happen, but they definitely have an effect on human action.