Hey Digital Diary Followers
Most of the media has been absorbed by large conglomerates, ‘families’ or chains (Meier). Looking at the media I consume it is very easy to trace it back to two or three major companies. The Walt Disney Company funnily enough owns one of my personal favourite shows – Revenge. The notion that there are only a handful of companies controlling our media raises some interesting questions on the issue of control and the impact that conglomerates have on consumers.
Meier states the global merging of the media industry and traditional corporate power encourages the spread of certain values often creating a conservative, “common sense” view of the world. This can be seen in the case of Rupert Murdoch and News Corporation’s perspective on homosexuality. It has been noted that the company has often taken a very conservative approach in regards to issues dealing with homosexuality. Distribution channels such as Fox news have made links to homosexuality and pedophilia and the New York Post has been seen as a reliable source of anti-LGBT material and has been associated with being “virulently homophobic” (Mohammad, 2011).
These values in regards to homosexuality can be rooted in Murdoch’s ideological position on the case:
“I believe it is wrong. I’m considered homophobic but I think that the family – father, mother, children – is fundamental to our civilisation.” (Maza, 2011)
Because of Murdoch’s personal ideology the consumers of his companies media seem to be receiving a biased messages on homosexuality. This can in turn have very lasting effects on the consumers because they are valuing information, which comes from an individual’s perspective of the issue.
Another issue with control is when a company raises concerns about corporate greed. Although we know News Corporations perspective on homosexuality it didn’t “apparently hate the gays enough to not make a buck off them” (Mohammad, 2011). In 2011 New Corporation published Wedding Pride – a magazine aimed at catering to newlywed gay and lesbian couples in New York where advertisers were making up to $5,400 for first page advertisement (Maza, 2011). This example raised the question for me should control be given to companies who are purely driven by the greed for money? It is important to ask why it matters who controls the media because ultimately it is the consumer who is affected by it the decisions made by corporations.