About Media Bill
1. What is the media bill?
2. Why did people prevent passing media bill? (Importance of media)
3. Power of the media in other country.
There is a sharp conflict of opinion on Media Bill. Let’s look at the pros and cons about revising the bill and why people are radically opposed to one another: a primary role and the importance of media.
The parties out of power including the Democratic Party (DP) and people opposing revision of the bill have opinions as follows. First, the Korea Information Society Development Institute (KISDI) wrote a report about the economic effect when broadcasting restrictions were relaxed, and it has been cited as a basis for supporting the bill revision. However, the report was manipulated. Therefore, the bill based on the report must be withdrawn or renewed. Second, other countries are balanced between the conservative media and the progressive media. However, Korea has more conservative media than progressive. If the broadcasting were affected by newspapers, Korean media would be more conservative. The news programs are connected with forming public opinion, so extreme care is needed. Third, the bill is not for the general public’s benefit, but for conservative newspapers and major companies upholding the Grand National Party (GNP). In the end, it will be able to hold mass media and maintain political power. Last, the bill is related to the liberty of public expression, so judgment of the general public is essential. The DP took a poll to the general public about revision of the media bill. According to this survey, 65 percent of the general public and 70 percent of experts are against the amendment of the bill.
The GNP and people who support revision of the bill have opinions as follows. First, the media has not only function of forming public opinion, but also the character of industry. If the control of media is relaxed, investment will increase. It would cause growth of economic productive capacity and increased employment. Second, if the bill was amended, various broadcasting channels would be made. It prevents monopolies and oligopolies of public opinion by specific broadcasting programming. Numerous news channels keep each other in check, so objective news is possible. Third, when the bill’s basic structure was made during the fifth republic, so the bill has weak point about politic power. If the economy participated in management of the media, the media would be independent. Last, a survey of public opinion is improper to decide the policy because it has its limit.
The reason why an acute antagonistic relationship formed is that the media have an important role in our society. What is their role in our society?
People live in a flow of information. It is difficult to distinguish directly truth from falsehood and valuable information from worthless information. Therefore, people accept most information about events unrelated to themselves uncritically. Eventually, everything about community people living, other countries, our world, and relationships with others is dependant on the media. If somebody having certain purpose or ideology holds the media and then perverts information suitable for their purpose, hardly offering opposite data, people are at the mercy of big brother. It is called “brainwashing”.
U Si-min, the former Health and Welfare said, “People should think from another viewpoint. Although amendment of the bill brings a profit, people should worry that it may have bad influence on our lives. Deregulation of management and entry leads to identification between each media: different points of view and different manufacturing methods of information will disappeared. Finally, portal sites will be identification because there isn’t a minority group offering content. The master of media will control consciousness. The people ruling the general public’s consciousness will wield power.
Katharina, the heroine of “The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum or How Violence Develops and Where It Can Lead (Original title: Die verlorene Ehre der Katharina Blum)”, kills the reporters because she is damaged by mediamorphosis. We have experienced an event similar to Katharina’s. Roh Moo-hyun, the former president, killed himself because of this mediamorphosis. These are just the side effects of newspapers: news mixes 1 percent truth and 99percent falsehood. If every media is under one, what will happen?
By Kim Du-ri, Reporter