The print media was an innovation that served to replace ancient communication means such as the Morse and the telegraph. This new innovation has played a major role in spreading information to all parts of the world. However, with the trends in the economy that have come up in recent times, the print media has turned out to be one of the greatest tools that are far much powerful that has given shape, on a continuous basis, to the American culture as well as consumerism even to the present time. This paper is going to assess the impact of print media advertising on consumerism and cultural values.
Print Media Advertising and the Popular Culture
In the course of the years, media has served beyond just being a link between human beings. Other than its communicative facet, the media has sway on (American) culture and consumerism. Of great significance, the print media plays a very important role in serving as a catalyst in regard to consumerism as well as impeding it. This influence leads to today’s (American) culture. The print media has so much power to a level that it causes people to develop a desire for the things that they used to hate. Print media has as well caused people to have a belief in those principles which they used to hate most and as a result, they have engaged in consuming things in excess to a level that they actually are not supposed to consume (Nyoz, 2008).
The various trends that are propagated by the print media are such trends as to how important self-image is; how needful it is to listen to music on a constant basis; and how important and popular it is to have a drink, among other trends. In carrying out the propagation of these trends, people are not just influenced by the media in regard to one decision or action, but there is the creation of a new mentality among the people through the media’s constant advertising. This new mentality in turn has an effect on the way people look at consumerism, social responsibility, law and justice, work, the body, and happiness.
Consumerism turns out to be connected in a direct manner to happiness. Work, instead of it being viewed as being necessary, and an element of life that is healthy, is looked at in terms of how useful it is. It is good to a level that it enables one to get money to purchase more commodities or things which are advertised, but bad to a level that it prevents a person from enjoying him or herself (having a good time).
There is overlooking of the true social responsibility and having a response to an advertisement is manipulated to be taken as offering assistance to society as well as to the environment. Looking at the human body, this is elevated and there is the projection of a human body that is ideal by trends in fashions as well as the images that are employed in the advertisement. In an actual sense, this is not fair to society in general for the reason that this image that is projected as being an ideal image is an image on which manipulation has been carried out by computers and it is not realistic and it is normally impossible for one to achieve this image (Anonymous: Print Media Advertisement: Effects on popular culture, 2010).
To summarize, as on the one handprint media plays a role that is quite vital in popular culture development and adoption carried out through advertisement, on the other hand, the role of print media is not one that is pure. Data is manipulated through print media advertisement, and there is the use of those facts that are not true with an intention of persuading people. What comes out of this is a popular culture with many fresh ideas and trends, but a culture of control as well. Because of the manipulation that is carried out subconsciously, individuals use their money as well as the effort in the quest to obtain happiness, a good image, or better status which can not be achieved in a way advertisement would direct an individual to believe. Consequently, it is quite vital for many people in the society to have the knowledge and understanding about the fundamental features and the fundamental influence of print media advertisement so as to derive benefit from the information this form of media offers, but not to be misled by the information that is not realistic.
- Anonymous, (2010). Print Media Advertisement: Effects on popular culture.
- Nyoz, V. (2008). Popular culture and print media.