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Today, media plays a big role in the life of a teenager or young adult. From the computer screens and cell phones, to magazines and music, media is everywhere, and it has a strong impact on today’s young people. We live in a world heavily influenced by the things that we see. It is no wonder that kids are just copying the things they see and hear. From fashion statements to even the way they speak. As a parent, wouldn’t you want those messages being seen and heard to be positive? Unfortunately, today it is not. The music we hear is a lot about drugs, sec and other activities frowned upon by society. Music and media today have a negative effect on the people who listen to it.
Music today has a negative effect on the people who listen to it. “One in three popular songs contains explicit references to drug or alcohol use” (Parker-Pope, 2008). If one-third of today’s music has explicit content, and people listen to roughly 2-3 hours of music per day, a lot of the things that they are hearing are not good. The more they are influenced by the music, the more they are going to do what they lyrics say. The people want to be viewed as popular, therefore they are going to do what is viewed as “cool” in the eyes of the artist. With the negative impact can bring violence in schools. A lot of unnecessary bullying can be a result from someone seeing someone do something or hearing that it’s okay to act like that.
Today, the media and technology are practically everywhere. This includes social media, music, video games and television. Doing drugs and other illegal things are nothing new to the media, they are just becoming more emphasized today. Children now have more access to things like cell phones and iPad, which can expose them to anything. There is a stronger connection with today’s youth with media and technology. Since most people in this generation have a cell phone, computer or hand-held music device, they are more prone to the influence that the music can have on the person. This increase in technology is causing a bigger influence on our youth.
Studies have shown that messages in the media can influence the way a child acts. If a student sees images of underage drinking and smoking, it can make one think that it is okay to do those things without consequences. Since students spend about 6-6. 5 hours engaged in some sort of media, they can start to develop that bad habit. Music already plays a big role in people’s lives today, triggering memories and feelings whether good or bad. If one is hearing negative things more than positive, those feelings aren’t going to be good.
Some things that the media can have a negative influence on are beauty standards, and public behavior. It is well known that the media has its influence on the way young people think, especially young women. The media has a negative impact on how a young woman looks at herself. The way these women and supermodels look are viewed by everyone everywhere. This can make a teenage girl think that there is only one way to beautiful. To be beautiful you must be thin, with long hair and a pretty face. This is the ways we are teaching our young women.
Not only the women but the men as well. A lot of young men must be tall, with muscles and a six pack to be viewed as “sexy”. Men also have to have the tough act going 24/7. To be a real man you can’t take anything from anyone, you have to stand tall, and be somewhat of a “jerk” to be seen in this society. All from what we’ve been shown on the television and what we hear in our music.
Attitude change is also something that media and music can influence. Through persuasion we are influenced to think that the way we look, and act are not good enough. If you think a certain way about something for long enough, you begin to think that it is true. A lot of women are viewed at as sex objects in the media, whether it’s a music video or a commercial, there is sometimes a woman that is supposed to be portrayed as sexy. Also, women are not supposed to be the “smarter” of the two sexes. Sadly, women are supposed to hide their intelligence from the outside world. Since one is taught this, they soon think that this is their reality, impacting their daily lives in a negative way.
Also, another big negative effect that the media portrays is praising negative behaviors. On most movies or T. V. shows, some of the actors may drink, smoke or do some type of drug. If a young person is starting to become more independent, and they see people who are being uplifted for their negativity, they are going to think that doing those same activities are going to make them popular. If one is exposed to these habits and activities regularly, they are going to want to participate in them.
Media can also play a role in how we live our lives overall. The pictures that we are being shown and that we see everywhere are being shown to us for specific reasons. One of these reasons is to try to show us that “this” is what it is like to be happy. That “this” is what you must do to achieve overall happiness. It even influences those who are illiterate. Studies have shown that “even individuals, who cannot read or write can be highly influenced by advertising to purchase certain products, or develop certain lifestyle values,” (Worsham, 2011). They see the pictures, and they see the people happy, so they see that that is what they must do to be happy.
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