The Dumbing of Society
With the current technological advancements, popular culture is continuously gaining prevalence. Pop culture is epitomized in a variety of ways, modalities, and expressions effected in styles varying from one traditional philosophy to another. Owing to its pervasive and gradually interrelated nature, many people find themselves embracing popular culture without a clear understanding of the effects that it has on them. Despite the many controversies and challenges surrounding the social media, popular culture is continuing to gain prevalence chiefly amongst the youths. This might have dire consequences on the different diverging cultures that are in existence. The major debate that arises is, “should the popular culture and social media be regarded as beneficial?”
The real way we live is already a complete consolidation of various cultures introduced into our old system. Various cultures have been introduced into our old cultural system. The social media has enabled the spread of popular culture and has influenced how teens define themselves. The images that the youth form about them and the entire world are questionable (Marshall & Özlem, 01). Additionally, the quality of the personal choices made by the teens has excessively been deteriorated. Research indicates that more than 65% of the youths copy what they see on the media (Johnson, 01). They strive to take different characteristics from superstars and the innumerable stimuli that they see on mass and social media.
Additionally, many people find themselves dropping their cultures in favor of pop culture. The intention of many people who spread popular culture is to inject foreign influence into the people so as to attain a particular interest or goal. Their main intention is to spread their culture to different sections of the world so that it is embraced by as many people as possible, and they drop their own authentic cultures (Sternheimer, 24). This can spark animosity between traditionalists and modernists. Attitudes and opinions of the real contemporary life vary from levels of individual viewpoints.
Furthermore, popular culture promotes violence and sexuality. Some popular music and videos are scary and violent. Some people who regularly listen to the music or videos find themselves being uncontrollably violent. This causes them to fight with other people and end up harming themselves. The sheer amount of sexual imagery that is popular in pop culture has the potential to affect people’s thoughts towards sex. This badly affects those who are not emotionally and physically matured. Additionally, most of the videos contain pictures and scenes that are generally not acceptable. The continuous spread of pop culture is ruining the societal norms and moral values (Sternheimer, 97).
On the other hand, the growth of mass media and popular culture has an educational value. By watching or listening to pop music, one gets to learn new concepts and improve their intelligence. Popular Programs such as The Mary Tyler Moore Show have enabled many people to learn new traits that can be of great help in life (Steven, 01). Educators have acknowledged the significance of using and engaging with the social media and pop culture and are proficiently using it to help students (Habell-Pallán, Michelle & Mary, 76). The astuteness comes fully formed in the words and activities of the participants in the pop culture. Additionally, the media enables people to share different types of information that have educational as well as social value. Information spreads faster and one can obtain any information that they need from the social media.
Additionally, the social media has led to the growth of businesses since many companies use it to advertise their products. Additionally, customers can now order or learn about a particular product from the social media and obtain full information regarding the product (Steven, 01). As these advertisements are made, popular culture is intertwined into the advertisements and it grows too.
Despite its adverse effects, pop culture and the media has steered the unification of people. The world is currently a global village, and unification of people is a matter to celebrate (Marshall & Özlem, 01). People must however look for other ways of promoting global peace, unity and harmony. Expecting the unification of cultures to be realized sounds unreal and unrealistic. Cultural differences should not be used as a barrier for interaction.
As explicated above, pop culture and social media reflects and manipulates the values of the society. They lead to moral deterioration, extinction of some cultures and reduce face-to-face social interactions. However, the media has led to the growth and development of companies due to its ability to cover a broad geographical region. Before embarking pop culture, one needs to disparagingly and keenly scrutinize its content.
Habell-Pallán, Michelle, and Mary Romero.Latino/a Popular Culture. New York: New York University Press, 2002. Print.
Johnson Steven. The New York Times Magazine Watching TV Makes You Smarter. The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia.N.p., 24 Apr. 2005. Web. 23 Jan. 2014.
Marshall Elizabeth and Özlem Sensoy. "Rethinking Popular Culture and Media: Introduction." Rethinking Schools. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Jan. 2014.
Sternheimer, Karen. Connecting Social Problems and Popular Culture: Why Media Is Not the Answer. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 2009. Print.