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By Joe Hronek

As a political science major, I am inclined to see news media through the politics lens, but it has other functions in today’s society.  Analyzing the current state of news media tells us things about our culture and what we value as a society.  What do I mean?  Well, we can make inferences about what our society values based on why and how people consume media.  We all know that on Twitter, the most popular accounts are those of celebrities.  Likewise, the growth of online and mobile media demonstrates our desire for quick, accessible information.  This could be contrasted with the past, where the most articles are newspaper columns written by professional journalists.   One couldn’t learn of a sports team’s progress via Twitter; one could only catch up with the latest news via newspaper recaps the following day.  Despite the frequent use of Twitter and blogs as personal diaries and not a source of information, they do play an important role in the news world.

We stand at a crossroads.  There is still a living legacy of old media.  Yet at the same time we are accommodating new media: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ILQrUrEWe8&t=00m45s (30 seconds).  The critical point of the video is that even though traditional news corporations are adapting, there is vastly more content being put out online by new websites and user-generated content.


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