What is mass media?
Whether citizens realize it or not mass media has a massive affect on their political views. "How?" you may ask. Well it's not a simple one word answer but a complex series of events.
Let's start from the very beginning of mass media. Some of the very first forms of mass media were things such as newspapers, signs, and radio broadcasts. This is how candidates began to introduce themselves to the people knowing that the wider their audience the higher their chances of winning elections. Of course at first this was NOT easy! Printing things was very difficult and only done on important occasions. Not to mention they couldn't have massive trucks driving around delivering them.
Newspapers were the main influence on people's political decisions until the radio and television came along. Candidates began to take interviews or make speeches on television or radio and some radio broadcasters would talk about political issues on the broadcast. This introduced viewers and listeners to opinions that weren't just within themselves and their family as family members had similar views form influencing each other. It's only natural that after growing up in a strictly republican family that the child would understand republican views more.
One of the more resourceful presidents was Franklin D. Roosevelt. Why bring this up? Because he took advantage of the mass media in a way that benefitted him greatly. Between 1933 and 1944, during the Great Depression, Roosevelt would go onto a radio broadcast called "fire chats" to explain to his people why he was doing what he was with the country and making sure the rumors weren't spread around as much. As a result this made the people feel closer to him as he comforted the country through the depression.
More Modern Please!
Enough about the past, let's move on! Fast Forwarding to the 1990's when internet was first invented. Of course people didn't know about it nor did they own it but that was just a snowball that would soon turn into an avalanche.
15 years later the internet had gone past making it to the public and it is being widely used (slowly killing the use of radio and newspaper but not affecting television much). Political candidates took advantage of this and tried to make public appearances as much as they could. This is is not all good however. Every candidate must realize that when they put themselves out in the public they put themselves out to be judged . Even with good intentions a candidate may still be looked down upon based on the connotations of the surrounding context. This is why people must be very careful with what they say to those who control the media. Any word or phrase without the direct meaning could cause later troubles and confusion that they don't want.
Today it is hard to use any form of media without seeing it be used to boost public awareness wether it be an upcoming election or the president trying to gain support for new laws. One of the most famous websites on the internet , Youtube, is being constantly used by politicians. Politicians know the public enjoys Youtube and they often attempt to pay for advertisements that will pop up before a video to have their audience listen to their ideas if even for a few seconds. At least they know that specific person has most likely heard their ideas and if they are politically involved they will consider what they said come next elections.