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Thursday, November 29, 2012

CONSTITUTIONAL DEFFECT AND THE ROLE OF THE MEDIA IN CORRECTING IT


A constitution is a set of fundamental principles or established precedents according to which a state or other organization is governed. These rules together make up, i.e. constitute, what the entity is. When these principles are written down into a single or set of legal documents, those documents may be said to comprise a written constitution.

Constitutions concern different levels of organizations, from sovereign states to companies and unincorporated associations. A treaty which establishes an international organization is also its constitution in that it would define how that organization is constituted. Within states, whether sovereign or federated, a constitution defines the principles upon which the state is based, the procedure in which laws are made and by whom. Some constitutions, especially written constitutions, also act as limiters of state power by establishing lines which a state's rulers cannot cross such as fundamental rights


Media can contribute a lot to a society. It can change opinions because they have access to people and this gives it a lot of strength. This strength can either be used constructively by educating the people or it can be used destructively by misleading the innocent people.
Power of the media can transform the whole society especially in the developing countries it can be used as a 'weapon of mass destruction'. But I think the most important use of media is to educate the people about the basic human rights.

The dilemma of the developing countries is that people are not fully aware of their basic rights and if they know, they don't know about what to do and where to go. They don't know their collective strength. Even they don't know how to protest and what is the importance of protests. Media should portray the facts. They should not transform the reality.

Education and discipline is key to progress. This is the difference between a nation and a crowd. Media men have access to people and they have an audience. Their programs have an impact and people listen to them. That's why they are more responsible for the betterment of the society. They should work to educate the people, to help the people and to liberate the people and to empower the people.
Media plays a very important role in the building of a society. Media has changed the societies of world so much that we can't ignore its importance. First of all we should know what the media is. Media is a source of information or communication. Media includes sources like print media and electronic media. Newspapers, magazines and any other form, which is written or printed, is included in print media and in electronic, media radio, television and Internet etc. are included.

In this age when there are so many channels and newspapers we cannot ignore its importance in the society. Media has lot of responsibility on its shoulders as today's society is very much influenced by the role of media. We believe in what media projects to us. We change our minds according to the information provided through it.

In the past when the media was not so strong we were quite ignorant about what is happening around us. But today we come to know very quickly what is happening around us. We have the access to all the
international news channels that provide us the facts and figures. Considering this fact that media has the power to influence society, it should know its responsibility towards society. It should feel its responsibility to educate the society in a positive way. It should be giving us fair analysis and factual information.

But if there is a constructional defect the media can’t do their normal day to day work because the constitution binds them together. for instance the 1992 constitution of the republic of chapter 12 states how the media should operate in Ghana.
Again the media has very little to do if there is a constitutional defect , for instance the right of information to the people will be blocked and the media will limit their information . But they must do well to inform the public about what is happening to the constitution.
Research into the media and violence if there is a constitutional defect examines whether a link between consuming media violence and subsequent aggressive and violent behavior exists. Although some social scientists support this link, methodological and theoretical problems with the existing literature limit interpretation of findings in this area. There is concern among some scholars that media researchers may have exaggerated effects (Ferguson & Kilburn, 2009; Freedman, 2002; Pinker 2002; Savage, 2004).
For example, a 2008 editorial in medical journal the Lancet concluded that discussions of media violence effects were exaggerated. There are many explanations of aggressive behavior which do not emphasize the role of the media. For example, some researchers have suggested that the pathway to aggression is largely biological/genetic (see the work of Hare, 1993, Larsson, Andershed, & Lichtenstein, in Press, among others), while others have suggested that aggression can be explained by principles of evolutionary psychology.

Another example is the electoral dispute in cote devoir which came about as a result of a constitutional dispute of who is the right person to declare the result of the election. And the media in the country is so quiet especially the foreign media, but the local and state owned media is being used to insight the people against the opposition party, instead of the media looking for solution.
To conclude, if there is a constitutional defect the media has the role of the agenda setting theory of showing the way of resolving it, taking into consideration the cote devoir’s constitutional problem.  

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

OUR JOURNALIST MUST SIT UP


Recently, the profession that I cherish and love so much has come under heavy criticism for their poor quality work. I must I say am very disappointed at the way some journalist are handling their work. It is rather sad that some people don’t learn the profession but choose to copy it blindly and pour it to us we the audience. I must say that this profession is a good one and can be a bad one if not handle well which can put the country into danger.

Journalism is the investigation and reporting of events, issues, and trends to a broad audience. Although there is much variation within journalism, the ideal is to inform the citizenry. Besides covering organizations and institutions such as government and business, journalism also covers cultural aspects of society such as arts and entertainment. The field includes jobs such as editing, photojournalism, and documentary.

A journalist is someone who investigates and report events, issues and trends to a broad audience through  media. The media is the means or instrumentality for storing or communicating information.  Examples of the media are newspapers, television, radio, and the internet.        

The role of a journalist was to act as a mediator or translator between the public and policy making elites. The journalist became the middleman. When elites spoke, journalists listened and record the information, distilled it, and passes it on to the public for their consumption. The reasoning behind this was that the public was not in a position to deconstruct the growing and complex flurry of information present in modern society, and so an intermediary was needed to filter news for the masses.  The public is not smart enough to understand complicated, political issues. Furthermore, the public was too consumed with their daily lives to care about complex public policy. Therefore the public needed someone to interpret the decisions or concerns of the elite to make the information plain and simple. That was the role of journalists.
 
The public would affect the decision-making of the elite with their vote. In the meantime, the elite (i.e. politicians, policy makers, bureaucrats, scientists, etc.) would keep the business of power running the journalist's role was to inform the public of what the elites were doing. it has been the believe that journalist are the ears of the public, for that matter they keep their ears close to the ground for any kind of information that will come from the government, public figures, politicians and policy makers to the public through the media. An examples of the  media is televisions, newspapers, radio, internet etc. In Ghana for instance journalists normally inform the public in their news bulletins and newspaper reviews which is normally done in the morning. Journalists are not mere transmission belts for their own viewpoints or for information provided by others.  They do original reporting, they do not confuse fact with opinion or rumor, and they make sound editorial decisions but a principal responsibility of journalist. journalists owe their primary allegiance to the public because through a journalist the public gets to know what is happening around him or her and it will help him or her to make well informed decisions and this is where politics and other things comes into it. This is the major work of a journalist since they hunt for news and later on package it to inform the general public through a wider medium either newspaper or the radio station. For an example if an epidemic breaks into the country, journalists use the media to inform the public about it and the way they should handle the pandemic.

Journalists also act as a watchdog over the elites(i.e. politicians, policy makers, bureaucrats, scientists, etc.) as the public had the final say with their votes. Effectively that kept the public at the bottom of the power chain, catching the flow of information that is handed down from experts/elites. To furthermore journalist also act like whistle blowers in terms of corruption. They do their own investigations to reveal the bad deeds of certain key players in the society and through that the key players are kept on their toes(their names does not go on air for disgrace ) in order not do anything bad. They do this by monitoring the government and the politicians so that they do not go against our country’s constitution and also to keep them up to their task. A journalist does this to bring development and democracy  in our county. For example if a politician or the government goes behind the scene to do something bad like bribery and  corruption journalist investigate it and bring them out for public knowledge, by doing this the politician or the government also try not to do anything bad For instance when the ace investigative  journalist ANAS ARMEYAW ANAS uncover the corrupt  deeds of CEPS officials in Ghana, the government has taken serious action against them and  most of the security officials are now alert and they are prepared to do the right things or else ANAS will be there again to uncover them .

To further more a journalist also plays the agenda setting role in our country. This is done by the journalist taking a topic or a problem that has affected the country either in the past or in future. He does this either by commenting on it or doing a detail analytical documentary on it which then becomes  the public discussion. For example joy Fm’s programmed a story on newly recruited government workers like nurses and teachers who have been paid for long time and how they were made to give themselves to men and to do other things just because they want to make ends meat.  This became public discussion and some even took it to the higher authority and something was done about this very particular issue by the government.
A journalist also serves as an opinion leader in our community and the country at large. They do this by putting their views and comment in their viewers and listeners perspective and  what they think is affecting the public and what should be done about it. They do this as in the form of editorials or  in the form of  feature stories. For example the chronicle gave their editorials on Thursday, August 6th, 2009 edition about the double standards of politicians

Another major role that journalist play in our country is education. The most important thing that a journalist do is to educate the public about  an issue, problem, event or epidemic. He does this by contacting  expect on that issue and he the journalist broadcast it or publicized it. For example when bird flu was first diagnosed in the world it was the international media who publicized or broadcasted it and they also did some analytical report on it by contacting health expect.
With this few words I employ all journalist to sit up to do the right thing now, before and after the general elections to safe guard our nation