Media have more influence than we know

By Esmeralda Aguilar Posted February 18, 2009

Have you ever thought of the impact the media may have on you? Think about it; what do most people do for entertainment? We watch TV. It influences what we wear, the music we want to listen to, even our political convictions. We even watch reality shows; which, as we all know, aren’t anything like real life. Let’s face it, we’re hooked on TV.

Perhaps the hardest question we’ll ever have to answer on the matter is this: If we know TV is so phony, why does it control so much of what we do and believe? It’s like video games– once you’re hooked, you’re hooked. How can we control our addiction?

It begins in childhood when parents sit their children in front of a TV to keep them occupied; then it progresses to developing favorite shows; then it becomes a part of a daily routine. People look to the media for inspiration, guidance, and entertainment. But why does it develop into a brain-draining cycle so many people say isn’t so bad?

Some argue that the media isn’t a big influence on us or it’s not as bad as many think. Yet, let’s take for example Daniel Petric, the teenager who attempted to kill his parents over his Halo 3 game. That game obviously influenced his actions. He let a concrete device control himself so much that he ruined his life.

Everyone knows examples of addicts, and knows the various harms with too much media influence; yet, we still go back for more. The truth is, we have nothing better to do, so why don’t we just watch TV. It’s lazy; it’s mindless entertainment. We watch TV because we can, and no one can stop us, but we can stop ourselves. Limit media influence to necessities like the news, and if you don’t feel satiated, watch mentally stimulating channels like the History Channel and leave it at that. There are many better things to enjoy in life than sitting on a couch.

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