Religion was part of the state constitution....
The media causes one what to think about and observe.
Similarly, publicized aggression--such as homicides or heavyweight boxing matches--have the "nasty tendency to spread to similar victims, no matter whether the aggression is inflicted on the self or on another" (151). Media coverage of suicides, homicides, and aggressive sports events are thus subject to strong ethical considerations, since the research indicates that such coverage stimulates an increased level of copycat responses. Should broadcast media publicize suicides if it is known that the principle of social proof will lead to more deaths?
The media has never had as much control as they do now.
One of the more disturbing events illustrating the power of social conformity is the 1978 Jonestown, Guyana mass suicide orchestrated by the Reverend Jim Jones. 910 members of The Peoples Temple voluntarily drank strawberry-flavored poison at the prompting of their spiritual leader. Cialdini cites Dr. Louis Jolyon West to help explain why the charismatic Jones was able to convince over 900 people to commit mass suicide: "This wouldn't have happened in California. But they lived in total alienation from the rest of the world in a jungle situation in a hostile country" (153). Jones' followers, when they moved from San Francisco to the jungles of Guyana, found themselves engulfed in uncertainty, and, as Cialdini asserts, uncertainty animates and activates the principle of social proof. In the case of Jonestown, the followers were surrounded by similar others in an otherwise dissimilar country. In their state of uncertainty, they looked to others for signs of correct conduct, and what they saw were people like themselves taking the poison. Rev. Jim Jones' genius, according to Cialdini, lay in his understanding of social psychology: isolate a group of like individuals in an alien environment and their sense of uncertainty will turn them into a herd of followers.
The Influence of the Media on Politics Essays 4124 Words | 17 Pages
Our idea of what the perfect body type is ever changing however it is always influenced by the Medias perception of what the perfect body image should look like.
So what are the ramifications of this definition on the media?
The principle of social proof acts like an automatic pilot in a plane and is usually quite useful for helping us navigate social interactions: we look around to see what others like us are doing, and we behave accordingly. We believe so we can belong. However, sometimes the data input into the automatic pilot is incorrect: sometimes the data has been purposely falsified, like canned laughter today or the use of in the Paris opera of the early 19th century. To defend ourselves from the pressures of social proof, as soon as we find evidence of a false response, we are advised to take control away from the automatic pilot. The other common situation when social proof leads us astray is pluralistic ignorance, when a small error in judgment is magnified into something more profound, like a traffic accident that occurs because we are blindly following the actions of others. For Cialdini, the image of the buffalo jump serves as a fitting analogy to conclude the chapter on the powers of social proof as a weapon of influence. Click, whirr...jump.