Ownership-wrecked.

Who owns the media? Today media is a huge part of our lives, sculpting our views on politics, science and even each other. Naturally a global media network doesn’t come cheap so it’s the wealth elite who own a sizeable portion of the media.  Those who own the means of production influence the culture to misinform and distract the masses.

This brings me on to the idea of Superstructure, a Marxist media theory about how the elite influence your life and culture. Allow me to break it down. everything you consume be it  a news article or a TV advert it has to be produced. those who own the means of production control the nature of this content, content that in-force’s a cultural narrative on everyhting from religion to family to politics. By giving us such information they keep us avid consumers, going to work to get money to buy cars and pay mortgages. in doing this we legitimise their world, a world where we sustain their wealth through consumerism. This Ouroboros is superstructure, it basically states we live our lives to in service to system that makes the wealthy wealthier.

Image result for superstructure

Havyn (2017) Marx superstructure. [Presentation] available: http://www.slideserve.com/havyn/marxist-theory-of-power  . [15th march].

An excellent theory but what does that look like in practise? well to see you need only look at one of the most active of these media barons, Rupert Murdoch. Owner of News Corp he owns many media outlets like: Fox News, The Sun, Sky and even National Geographic. So how can a man like this effect a culture let me show you an example. A 2013 survey from the Union of Concerned Scientists found 72 % of Fox News content on climate change that year had been misleading and understated.

Fox News Channel Coverage of Climate Science“We found that Fox News hosts and guests were the mostly likely to understate the reality and effects of climate change as well as the most likely to disparage climate science and scientists.”

 

So why would Mr. Murdoch not want people to know about the effects of fossil fuels and climate change? Well Murdoch is part of a New- Jersey firm called Genie Energy in which he owns a 5.5% stake. In 2013 Genie was given drilling rights to one of the largest oil reserves ever found in Golan Heights, the land in question is recognised by the UN as Syrian territory but is under Israeli military occupation. So as Murdoch makes money of fossil fuels it’s unlikely he would be honest about their effect on our planet. This is a prime example of Superstructure manipulation because Murdoch is creating a cultural narrative where by his audience know less about the effect of fossil fuels so are likely to go out and fill up their car thus ecnomicaly legitimising Murdoch’s base for means of production..    .

Private media ownership should be a good thing, the free market means theoretically anyone can produce media and influence the public but we are constantly bombarded with misinformation and distraction. Fox news is one of the largest US cable, networks millions of people get home every night tune in to watch the news. as you can see they are Greeted with fear and misinformation.

Judge Jeanine – BOMB ISIS and Keep Bombing Them, Bomb Them Again & Again!
,61ys and Fox News. (2014), Youtube.

Just because the elite publish this information and label it a news we shouldn’t see it as gospel. Weather you pick up The Sun, The Guardian or listen to BBC Radio 3. Read, listen but it must be done with an air of scepticism. Research and analyse; learn the facts forge an understanding of the reality of an event and be careful of the word truth.

bibliography 

Engdahl, W.F. (2015) Genies and genocide: Syria, Israel, Russia and much oil | new eastern outlook. accessed from: http://journal-neo.org/2015/10/26/genies-and-genocide-syria-israel-russia-and-much-oil-2/ [cited on the 10th of march].

Havyn (2017) Marx superstructure. [Presentation] available: http://www.slideserve.com/havyn/marxist-theory-of-power  . [15th march].

Judge Jeanine – BOMB ISIS and Keep Bombing Them, Bomb Them Again & Again!
,61ys and Fox News. (2014), Youtube.

Union of Concerned Scientists (Cited in Science or Spin? Assessing the Accuracy of Cable News Coverage of Climate Science) April 2014.   accessed from: http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/solutions/fight-misinformation/cable-news-coverage-climate-change-science.html cited on the 9th of march.

 

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