Most of what our world revolves around has to do with the media. Whether that be social media or news media, mass communications is dictating how many people live their lives. Each year, Cision conducts the State of the Media report as a “way to provide a full and honest report of what journalists are dealing with at that particular time,” said Sarah Parker, Head of Content Marketing at Cision.
“Our goal is to help strengthen the relationship between PR professionals and the media, so it was crucial to reach back out to understand how journalists are managing these unprecedented times.”
This year, one of the topics was how COVID-19 has impacted the media. One thing that the study found is that all coverage is being looked at through the lens of Covid-19. Journalists reported searching for optimistic, human stories in response to the current news cycle.
Mass communication specialists can use mass communication theories as a way to explain and overcome this issue. Theories seek to answer questions. Understanding the different theories allows professionals insight into challenges within mass communications. As a way of finding more optimistic human stories in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, journalists can apply the agenda-setting theory. This theory is the media’s capability, through repeated news coverage, of raising the importance of an issue in the public’s mind. The media dictates what the public thinks about. Journalist’s focus on optimistic stories could distract and engage viewers, allowing them to look outside the Covid-19 lens.
This specific challenge is not the only one facing the media. The continuing distrust in the media and social media algorithms are a couple of other challenges facing the media industry. The continued focus on mass communication theories will allow us to ask questions, find answers, and eventually solve problems. While Cision was working on finding the state of the media, due to the media’s influence on society, it may have also reported the state of the world.