Essay Topic: Is the nature of crime in our society accurately presented by the media? Discuss.
Course Name: Introduction to Crime
Course Code: CCJ15
Convenor: Oriel South
Tutor: Silke Meyer
Assessment Item No: Two
Due Date: 14 September, 2011
Word Count: 1916
The media can be seen as an influential tool when it comes to how the public perceives crime today, this paper will be examining how the media plays a major role in how people perceive crime. This paper will be discussing how the media is defined, the changes that have occurred over time in delivering news and crime stories that are now seen as acceptable and newsworthy to the public. The paper will then move on to discuss eight factors that are consistently used to determine and select newsworthy stories which are aired to the public. Public perception of crime is greatly influenced by five myths used by the media, this paper will examine these myths and data will be used to support how the public perception of crime differs to official statistics that are released by Australian Bureau of Statistics.
The media can be seen as a central part of people’s modern life today (Cavender, 2004). For many the media is a source that helps them to understand crime, how the criminal justice system controls crime and what punishments are handed down to those who have committed crime in our society (Hayes, and Prenzler, 2009, p.4). To understand the term crime, a classic legal definition noted by Hayes and Prenzler (2009) states crime is acts or omissions that are prohibited under appropriate penal provisions by authority of the state. A person, who commits an offence against the state, is therefore liable to punishment. Today’s media can be defined as print, electronic and communication. Print media includes newspapers and magazines, electronic media includes radio and television and communication media are methods used to deliver information through...