Local Opinion – Hard Times: World war and rise of modern media

Local Opinions

Our newest community reporter Spring Heeled Jack has written a series of short articles which we will share over the next few weeks.

Here is the latest installment of Hard Times.

The days of cosy fireside chats on the radio broadcast to the general public in America by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Charles De Gaulle in exile from Britain to French people and Winston Churchill to the British public during World War 2 can be regarded today as somewhat dated and ineffective.

However, at that time they were reassuring messages during the 1930s and 1940s to keep up the morale of ordinary people that a fascist dictator, Hitler, would not succeed in his quest for world domination.

Modern media messages can be seen daily today on television, heard on the radio and read in print newspapers where news stories are repeated regularly on BBC television news and churned every 20 minutes, which is a general media term.

It was the former Labour Prime Minister of Great Britain, Harold Wilson who once said in the 1960s that a week was a long time in politics.

However, with worldwide 24 hour media coverage today, a single day has become almost an eternity regarding current newsworthy stories.

The advent of social media has created a new slant on the media where ordinary people can create online petitions about topics, create flash mobs or just to post their personal media messages.

This phenomenon has upset politicians and their media advisers commonly known as spin doctors, who have loved to control the input and output of media messages along with the ebb and flow of stories.

Unpopular political decisions and policies are now being challenged by ordinary people expressing their views and opinions on matters affecting their lives.

This can be seen at all levels from local council to national government, where people are now engaging with the media and politicians sometimes at a distance by social media and community newsletters.

Politicians are very often afraid of this because their spin doctors are in effect media manipulators, promoting a biased means of communicating messages, which can often be particularly distorted, untrue or to exaggerate the accounts of stories that they are reporting.

The general public can object to this and they are often now confident in presenting their own stories.

This can be achieved today by social media or simply writing stories for publication in local community newsletters. It often shows a true and more balanced account where there is no professional media and political interference in the reporting of local news.

Many local community activists and others are frequently fed up with politicians who only appear from time to time, perhaps every four or five years to seek their votes.

However, there are some exceptions to self-serving politicians, where several actually work very hard to represent their constituents and pursue matters on their behalf.

Article submitted by Spring Heeled Jack.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not the Digital Sentinel.

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