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Media and Politics

The media is an intricate part of American government, intertwined with the practice of democracy, but to what extent does the media influence public opinion? To answer that several aspects of media coverage have to be explored. Thefirst fact is that the media is America's basic resource for all the news concerning American politics. The second aspect is that the opinion expressed by the press influences the opinion adopted by the public. Lastly the issues the media deem important help set the national agenda. The most basic way the media influence public opinion is by offering knowledge about government decisions and access to government information. Daily the press deliver the raw information to the nation, whom in turn form into opinions. Without the media it would take the public longer to become educated about governmental proceedings. The media send messages across the nation. Before the advancement of such media as the television, radio, and the Internet, a much smaller percentage of Americans were informed about the issues concerning the nation. The second way the media can influence public opinion is through their ability to convey an overall tone to their readers and viewers according to their own sentiments. Often a newspaper's own feelings on a certain issue are expressed in their articles. When the public reads about such issues they can adopt the attitude which the media portrayed. The press my frame stories in a way that enhances the overall tone toward government and politics. Unfortunately the most common trend is to hold a negative attitude toward government. This negative tone has led to a national decline in voter participation. A greater portion of the country now attains a skeptical view of the American government. Most likely the largest way the media impact the public opinion is through agenda setting. Because of the vast number of issues plaguing America today, the press has to

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