Don’t Blame the Papers: The Declining Political Influence of the Printed Press

By: Ken Goldstein | OpenDemocracy.net

Dan Hind’s introduction to OurKingdom’s Power and the Media debate provides an appropriate jumping off point for a discussion of the changing size, shape and influence of media, and newspapers in particular, in the political process. Hind says: “The media constitute an important power in their own right and they are also intimately connected to the other kinds of power, whether political, economic or social.”

It’s the kind of general statement with which most people would agree. Yet, too often, that kind of statement is used as a rationale to overstate the actual “power” of the media in politics, and then to craft regulatory or legislative remedies to deal with questions of media “diversity” or “concentration”.

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