iRiabelle L. Aurellano
Mass Media and Economic Development
Mass media has always been one of the pillars of modern society. With its wide range and base, it is indubitably, the most effective and efficient way of mass information dissemination. Yet, instead of mass media being a primary tool for education, it is mostly being used as a medium for entertainment; to show bland, superficial products with little, or no educational value. So, attempting to connect mass media with economic development would seem as disjoint as climate change and my inability to make good analogies. Surprisingly, this is what the last speaker, from 'The Public Sphere' talked about. The forum cites economic literacy as the main contribution that mass media can make to economic development. Defining economic literacy as 'the ability to identify, analyze and evaluate the consequences of individual decisions and public policy,' the speaker, Mr. Omar Dumdum of NEDA, goes in to explain the ineffectiveness of economic education in secondary school; therefore, mass media should take the primary responsibility of promulgating economic literacy, to promote economic development. This can be done, according to Mr. Dumdum, through better economic news writing and reporting, making economic news understandable for the general population, and information dissemination campaigns. There will be some difficulties encountered, of course, as Economics is wrought with technical terms that cannot be easily simplified, but, if information campaigns are done in tandem with better reporting, results can be achieved. Personally, I do think it is possible and feasible. Being someone who believes in the power of mass media to reform society, I think mass media could enhance the net economic literacy of the Philippines, which would, hopefully, increase Filipino participation in crucial economic activities, resulting in inclusive economic development. But of course, mass media has internal flaws that...
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