Bias

Bias can better be understood as on overarching term that encompasses various social constructs such as stereotyping, prejudice, racism, labels, inequality and so forth. Bugged (2007) discusses the complex connections between bias, stereotypes, media Influence, and globalization and malignant that In order to resist stereotypes we must acknowledge that biases exist and affect the lived experiences of peoples ND groups world wide.

An emphasis is placed on recognizing which biases are more harmful and working towards overcoming them through responsible and inclusive media venues. An irony exists when examining the connection between blabs and globalization. The irony is as follows: 1 . Globalization Is rapidly expanding our social communities and ways of Interacting with the world 2. The abundance of technology and communication systems available have become overwhelming often leaving individuals working in narrower electronic spaces 3.

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Essentially, professionals have become so consumed with technology and virtual coverage that they are experiencing less and less of the real world which exists outside of their window “Technology promised society a global village and delivered an Indoor simulated one Instead” – Michael Bugged (2007) and in all facets of life. For the purpose of this research seminar we will examine and investigate bias within a) printed texts and b) television and news media.

Important Terms & Concepts: Cultural Exclusion the prevention or condemnation of certain viewpoints, ideas, or practices in shared community Cultural Inclusion shared community the welcoming of diverse viewpoints, ideas, or practices in Racial Inappropriateness using stereotypical behavior, language, content, or images offensive to one or more groups in shared community Sensitivity behavior, language, content, or images that’s takes into account the time, place, viewpoints, ideas, or practices of one or more individuals or groups in shared community Bias within Printed Texts Bugged (2007) claims that newspapers are the most “racially inflammatory medium, tit 47 percent of black respondents claiming that coverage actually worsens race relations and only 14 percent claiming it improves such relations”(p. 219). When mediums such as newspapers, books, magazines, and comic strips fail to properly represent the diversity of a social group they perpetuate the stereotypes and prejudices that consume our thoughts and feelings about ourselves and others (Began, 2007).

These prejudice feelings and schemas develop at a very young age as children are becoming more exposed to various types of media, which are more often hen not distortions of reality. Both blatant and unobtrusive bias can be found in children’s books (Czech, 1997). Czech (1997) explains blatant bias to be when stories or illustrations portray obvious and destructive stereotypes and pay little attention to individuality within the group. Unobtrusive bias is often referred to as exclusivity because children are only exposed to one viewpoint, group experience, or outlook (Czech, 1997). Children’s books, particularly the classics are rife with distorted perceptions of other cultures which further perpetuate stereotypes.

It is argued that books should serve as mirrors and windows; mirrors let children see the reflection of their own lives while windows let them see the lives of others (Ragout, 2009). However, if children learn to critically forth, the power of printed texts to convey stereotypes can be dramatically reduced. Bias within the Media/Television “Mass communication researchers and social psychologists often point to the mass media as an important source of stereotypical images, with the assumption that these images produce or reinforce prejudice and discrimination on the part of audiences” (Gorham, 2006, p. 289). The mass media is an ever-present and expanding source of images, messages, stereotypes, information, and viewpoints on political, social, and economic issues taking place locally and globally.

Heavy viewing of television program has been shown to result in negative ethnic stereotypes (Lee, Bastard, Eire, Walt, Carlson, 2009). Television serves as a way for individuals to observe minority groups and form opinions based on their observations, particularly individuals who do not have contact with other ethnic groups (Lee et al. , 2009). Mueller (2006) investigates media coverage of natural disasters in the United States and bluntly maintains that news corporations tend to highlight stories deemed simple emergencies. These are natural disasters that require immediate and basic intervention and are not the fault of human error; a simple and efficient way for the ‘helping hand’ to display acts of humanitarianism on the world’s stage (Mueller, 2006).

Whether the mass media and news media provide unbiased and equitable news coverage on all human activity surrounding the globe is a largely contested topic. Perhaps it is more important to work towards uncovering the subtle ways in which media influences thoughts and perceptions about race and certain social groups (Gorham, 2006). In regards to children and the media it is crucial to provide them with the tools necessary to critically analyze and make sense of the images and messages they are receiving.