November 18, 2013 by ag5454
Does the egg come before the chicken? This concept is how I think of agenda setting. Does the media run the stories that will interest the public, or is the public interested because the media runs the story. It is hard to tell. When you look at the results of the Shaw and McCombs Chapel Hill study; you can see there is a very high correlation in the topics too the stories the media runs and the believes of the audience.
This also relates to George Gerbner’s cultivation theory. Is the media reaching the audience or is the audience seeking out the media? According to Gerbner, the audience will form opinions based on television programming even though it may not relate to “real life”. I believe the media has a large influence on what the public believes and how they interpret real life events. In some programming it is almost like we are told what is “normal” or what is acceptable in today’s culture.