Shaping Social Morals and Propagating Cultural Values through Electronic Media and Role of the Regulator

Shaping Social Morals and Propagating Cultural Values through Electronic Media and Role of the Regulator

(Part 2)

By Imran Ghaznavi

In the contemporary world, electronic media stands as a formidable force. It influences societal norms, shapes public opinion, and disseminates cultural values. Its pervasive presence, spanning television, radio, and digital platforms, confers upon it a significant responsibility. This responsibility encompasses the dual roles of shaping societal morals and propagating cultural values. Effective Electronic Media Regulatory Authority is crucial in engaging stakeholders and safeguarding public interest.

Electronic media, with its vast reach and influence, plays a pivotal role in shaping social morals. Television programs, news broadcasts, reality shows and online content serve as primary sources of information and entertainment. They impact viewers’ perceptions and behaviors. The portrayal of ethical dilemmas, social issues, and human interactions on screen can profoundly influence public attitudes. For instance, media coverage of social justice movements can galvanize public support and drive societal change. Responsible reporting on sensitive issues can promote understanding and empathy, which is highly crucial for our society where defamation laws are very weak and justice is hardly seen at the end of the day.

However, this influence is a double-edged sword. The dissemination of content that glorifies violence, promotes superficial values, or perpetuates stereotypes can have detrimental effects on societal morals. Media owners, producers and broadcasters bear a significant ethical responsibility. They must strive to create content that promotes positive values, encourages critical thinking, and fosters a more inclusive society. Educational programs, documentaries, and balanced news reporting can contribute to a well-informed and morally conscious public.

Cultural values are the bedrock of any society. They encompass traditions, beliefs, and practices passed down through generations. Electronic media plays a crucial role in preserving and propagating these values. By showcasing diverse cultural narratives, media can foster a sense of identity and continuity within a community. Television shows, films, and online content that highlight cultural heritage, traditional practices, and local arts can strengthen cultural pride and understanding.

Moreover, electronic media has the power to bridge cultural divides and promote intercultural dialogue. In an increasingly globalized world, media can introduce audiences to different cultures, fostering mutual respect and appreciation. Programs that celebrate cultural diversity and highlight common human experiences can contribute to a more harmonious and cohesive global society.

To effectively harness the positive potential of electronic media, robust regulations are essential. Media Regulator play a crucial role in ensuring that the content disseminated by electronic media serves the public interest. This involves setting and enforcing standards for content quality, ethical journalism, and responsible broadcasting. Regulator must also ensure robust and effective in-house research and mentoring mechanism with highly qualified human capital.

Engaging stakeholders is a key component of effective media regulation. Stakeholders, including media producers, broadcasters, advertisers, and the public, have vested interests in the media landscape. Regulators must facilitate dialogue among these groups to address concerns, gather diverse perspectives, and foster a collaborative approach to media governance.

One effective strategy of the regulator is to rejuvenate advisory committees and engage stakeholders. These committees should comprise active and notable professionals representing various sectors. These committees can provide valuable insights and recommendations on media policies and practices which should be seriously looked into. Public consultations and feedback mechanisms can also ensure that the voices of the community are heard and considered in regulatory decisions.

Transparency and accountability are fundamental to effective media regulation. Regulators should operate with a high degree of openness, clearly communicating their policies, decisions, and the rationale behind them. This transparency builds trust and ensures that regulatory actions are perceived as fair and unbiased.

While electronic media holds immense potential for positive influence, it also faces significant challenges. The rapid evolution of digital platforms, the proliferation of fake news, and the commercialization of content pose risks to the integrity and ethical standards of media. Media regulators must adapt to these changes and implement innovative solutions to safeguard public interest.

The rise of social media platforms, in particular, presents unique challenges. Unlike traditional media, social media content is often user-generated and less subject to regulatory oversight. This can lead to the spread of misinformation and harmful content. Regulators must find ways to collaborate with social media companies to enhance content moderation and promote responsible online behavior.

Despite these challenges, electronic media also offers unprecedented opportunities for positive impact. Advances in technology enable more interactive and engaging content, reaching wider audiences than ever before. Media can leverage these advancements to enhance educational programming, promote social causes, and foster a more informed and connected society.

Electronic media wields considerable power in shaping social morals and propagating cultural values. With this power comes a profound responsibility to create and disseminate content that promotes ethical standards and cultural understanding. Effective regulation, driven by stakeholder engagement and a commitment to transparency, is essential to ensuring that electronic media serves the public interest. By navigating the challenges and seizing the opportunities presented by the evolving media landscape, electronic media can play a pivotal role in fostering a more ethical, informed, and culturally cohesive society.

The responsibility of electronic media in molding the social fabric cannot be overstated. It must balance its powerful influence with a deep-seated commitment to ethical standards and cultural enrichment. As society continues to evolve, the role of electronic media in shaping morals and cultural values will remain a cornerstone of public life, necessitating vigilant and adaptive regulatory practices.

The author is a senior media and regulatory practitioner with academic excellence and over 34 year of industry experience. Can be reached at [email protected] website: