A lot of people are living in a world where they don’t really think much about what is going on around them, says Professor John Kew.
“The news you see on television is often more about the country than the people,” he says.
Professor Kew, an expert in Australian journalism, is a former ABC journalist who became a professor of international media at the University of Sydney.
“I have been told by colleagues and peers that it’s very difficult to understand the world that we live in without seeing it through the lens of a media that is more than a media outlet,” he told The World Today.
“There is no doubt that the rise of the internet has made it more difficult to comprehend the world around us.”
Dr Kew’s research has shown that the world is moving away from a news-centric media model to one in which people are more concerned about what they are reading.
“A lot of the media now that we see on a daily basis is very focused on what’s happening in the real world and on the issues of the day,” he said.
“That’s a lot less news-focused and therefore it’s less interesting to read and it’s more about news, less about news about people and their lives.”
Dr Michael Green, a professor in the Media Studies program at the Australian National University, says it’s also become easier to avoid the mainstream media, especially when it comes to social issues such as LGBTIQ issues.
“We have seen the rise in the online-only media,” he tells The World today.
“This is not only because it is less reliant on traditional broadcast media, but also because of the fact that it is now easier to stay connected with people in real time via social media.”
Professor Green says that with more people online, they are also finding themselves more isolated from their communities and communities have become more fearful.
“Social media is a very potent tool for getting information to people,” Dr Green said.
“The internet is the great equaliser, for those who are not connected to the mainstream news media, and for those in those communities who have to deal with it in a real-time fashion.”
Professor Kow said that people should be able to get news from any source they choose.
“It’s important that we have the freedom to access the news of the world at any time, and that we don’t have to restrict ourselves to the ones that are on our news feed,” he explained.
“And of course, the internet is also a great way to get information about the things that matter most to you.”