The Dominance of Media’s Soft Power

The Dominance of Media’s Soft Power

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Fariha Mansoor

“Whoever controls the media controls the mind. ”

Does this saying needs any illumination or further clarification? The appropriate response is, “No, it is self-evident”!

In light of the fact that we are living in a media arranged world in which our brains are in full control of the media joints that are catching our psyches and our ability to think, how might we disregard the truth that media is absolutely controlling our method for recognition and controlling it as indicated by their will without our insight?

But, this doesn’t mean that all of the people are acting like passive audience. There are people who know what they are choosing to watch and they have their own opinions.

Power, in this context, is the ability to influence the behavior of others to get the outcomes you want. There are several ways one can achieve this: you can coerce them with threats; you can induce them with payments; or you can attract and co-opt them to want what you want. “This soft power – getting others to want the outcomes you want – co-opts people rather than coerces them. Soft power is the capacity to shape the inclinations of others through interest and fascination.” A characterizing highlight of soft power is that it is no coercive; the money of delicate influence is culture, political esteems, and remote arrangements. So media is the current soft power through which media conglomerates are promoting their cultural products and increasing its overall attractiveness to influence the global stage.

Joseph Samuel Nye is an American political scientist who compared hard power and soft power and he says that hard power is all about the use of payment and coercion while soft power can be wielded not just by states but also by all actors in international politics, such as NGOs or international institutions. It is also considered the “second face of power” that indirectly allow you to obtain the outcomes you want. It clearly explains that these days media is being used as a soft power to gain the desired outcomes whether they are for diplomatic purpose or market oriented.

There is an interesting saying about media dominance; “if you cannot dominate all of radio, dominate a single station. If you cannot dominate a whole station, dominate a single day part on that station. If you cannot dominate all of television, then dominate a single hour of the day. If you cannot dominate an hour, dominate a single TV show. Then when your business has grown, dominate a second and a third. This is the kind of technique that is being adopted by all the media industries and the general public is prey who is being exploited by the predator: media.”

Our society and media are overlapping and they are totally intermingled so one can’t think of life without depending on media. Instead of real wars among ‘enemy countries’, media is being used as as a soft power, or as a warfare took, to psychologically influence the people. We are considering it normal because we are born into this system of lies and deception. But, it’s time to think about it because media is constantly assaulting our thoughts and it is conditioning our lives. As Malcolm X said that “the media is the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the innocent guilty, and that’s power, because media control the minds of the masses.”

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Pamir Times

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Pamir Times is the pioneering community news and views portal of Gilgit – Baltistan, Kohistan, Chitral and the surrounding mountain areas. It is a voluntary, not-for-profit, non-partisan and independent venture initiated by the youth.