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Trial by Media
With 27 million newspapers bought and 99 percent of the adult
population watching an average of 2½ hours of television every day,
the British Media (mass media) has a massive audience. Since the
1920’s, sociological research has been conducted on the basis of
concerns about the potentially negative influence over the media
consuming public.
Early research conducted by the Payne Fund studies found that the mass
media had a powerful effect over its audience, which lead to the more
recent ‘trial by media’ debate. ‘Trial by Media’ essentially
translates as media bias. The Sun Newspaper’s switch from Conservative
to Labour just before the general election in 1997, and Labour’s
subsequent win, arguably demonstrates evidence of the powerful effect
of bias within the media. (Jones M., Jones E. Mass Media 1998 p190) In
the case of Jamie Bulger, murdered by two young boys in 1993, blame
was attributed to the media for the 18-certificate horror ‘Childs
Play3’ production, from which the boys were said to have ‘re-…
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