1st article of our 6 week series on Hollywood Politics Inside & Out
It’s not a surprise media companies like Time Warner own film studios. Time Warner who own major Internet, publishing, telecommunications and television divisions, owns Warner Brothers and News Corporation owns Twentieth Century Fox and the Wall Street Journal. With all this influence the progression of American culture don’t stand a chance of evolving. In this article we will look into media companies and advertisers influence over consumers as part of an ongoing six-week series on Hollywood and Politics.
Today everywhere you look consumers are brainwashed to spend money and the biggest targets are kids, teens and young adults. The mass media has developed sophisticated advertising techniques that make consumers think luxury items are now necessities and the less you consume the less character you have.  But before we get into discussing advertising let’s talk about consumption. Statistics from the World Population Balance study claim Americans make up 5% of the world’s population yet consume 20% of its energy.  Here are some stark figures regarding Population and Energy Consumption by Country below (the full report can be found here).
Today industries spend millions and billions of dollars to get you to spend money on their products. According to an article on Media & Advertising it states,
“Various free media such as the numerous channels available in America and other nations are naturally subsidized with advertising to help pay the costs.”
It goes on to say,
“This often means such media outlets attract greater funds than those outlets funded through public funding or TV licenses. It can mean that such outlets can also then afford better programming of key events and programs.
Given the dependency media companies can have on advertising, advertisers can often have exert undue influences (knowingly or tacitly); if something is reported that the advertiser doesn’t like or the media company has funded a documentary that exposes bad practice by an advertiser, the media company can risk losing much needed revenue to stay alive.”
During WWII, the government worked with Hollywood to use films to promote the war. Actually America produced the most war time posters than any other country during World War I & II. Yet today some consumers believe propaganda films are new. In an article called Political Hollywood a moviegoer had these things to say,
“My dilemma is that Hollywood, and it’s foreign counterparts, is increasingly on a mission, and that mission seems to be the advancement of a leftist political agenda.”
She goes on to say,
“Movies of late have moved well beyond the subtlety of a camera pan across a poster though. Now we get full-fledged in your face hammer to the head propaganda without any pretense.”
Perhaps, but this media breech can’t only be attributed to filmmakers or the left given Fox News Channel are well known to promote right wing agendas? Fox News is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation. Here’s an interesting interview from fair.org from an article called The Most Biased Name in News it states,
“The abundance of conservatives and Republicans at Fox News Channel does not seem to be a coincidence. In 1996, Andrew Kirtzman, a respected New York City cable news reporter, was interviewed for a job with Fox and says that management wanted to know what his political affiliation was. “They were afraid I was a Democrat,” he told the Village Voice (10/15/96). When Kirtzman refused to tell Fox his party ID, “all employment discussion ended,” according to the Voice.”
Another known fact media corporations “dumb down” content in favor of creating a buying mood for their target audience. In other words, the content is not as important as the type of person being targeted. So content that’s too analytical, critical or progressive is banned. Do you think consumers, media corporations or advertisers are to blame for the depreciation of American culture today? How can consumers evolve culturally with media/advertising pushing their agendas?
Please join us for a discussion Thursday 10/ 11/2012@7pmE/12UTC