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Ch 5: The Media and American Democracy

About This Chapter

Watch video lessons and learn about the interaction between America's government and the media. Learn how the relationship has changed over time, especially during the digital age.

About This Chapter

Over the years, many characteristics of American politics have changed, and media's role in that process has also changed dramatically. In this chapter, our instructors explain the development of that role and how the advent of electronic media has altered the interaction between the two. Learn about the positives and possible negatives of media's involvement in American politics and see what rules the media must follow. As you complete this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Track the changes that have occurred in the media over the years
  • Understand the effects of media on the political arena
  • Define media bias and discuss the prevalent types
  • Explain the role of media in campaigns and elections
  • List some rules that govern the media

Video Objective
Development of the Mass Media & Journalism in the United States: History & Timeline Trace the development of American journalistic history and its role in American politics.
American Media Information Sources: Definition & Types Compare the influence of old and new media and discuss how electronic media have changed interactions between public officials and the press.
Media's Influence on the Public's Political Attitudes Evaluate the effects of media and their influence on political attitudes.
Media Bias & Criticism: Definition, Types & Examples Identify and discuss the major kinds of media bias and assess criticisms of the media.
How the Media Covers Elections & Other Government Activities Assess the role of media in the campaign and election processes.
Rules Governing the Media: Definition & Examples Discuss some of the rules and regulations governing various media outlets.

6 Lessons in Chapter 5: The Media and American Democracy
Development of the Mass Media & Journalism in the United States: History & Timeline

1. Development of the Mass Media & Journalism in the United States: History & Timeline

The mass media includes print media, broadcast media, social media and other types of communication. This lesson explores the development of the mass media in the United States and its role in the American political process.

American Media Information Sources: Definition & Types

2. American Media Information Sources: Definition & Types

Americans use many different sources of media to gain information about the government. This lesson explores American media information sources throughout history and looks at the influence of old and new media.

Media's Influence on the Public's Political Attitudes

3. Media's Influence on the Public's Political Attitudes

Most people make their political decisions based on impressions gained from the media. This lesson assesses the effect of media, especially newer forms of media, on the public's political attitudes.

Media Bias & Criticism: Definition, Types & Examples

4. Media Bias & Criticism: Definition, Types & Examples

Media bias occurs when a media outlet reports a news story in a partial or prejudiced manner. There are many different types of media bias. This lesson takes a look at the most common types of media bias.

The Role of Media in Elections & Other Government Activities

5. The Role of Media in Elections & Other Government Activities

The media play several important roles in the campaign and election processes. This lesson examines the media's function in presidential campaigns and elections and other government activities.

Rules Governing the Media: Definition & Examples

6. Rules Governing the Media: Definition & Examples

The First Amendment guarantees freedom of the press, but the government still regulates the media in many ways. This lesson examines the laws, rules and regulations that govern various media outlets.

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