Assignment emphasizes on the fact that role of media is make the relevant information available to the people

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Media is a very powerful tool because it has the power to influence the mind of large number of people. It has the ability to stimulate the cultural habits portrait something which may or may not be a fact. With large number of people being engaged in following the television, newspapers, magazines, social media, films etc. the number of people under its ambit is also numerous. Whatever is being portrayed by the media must be published very cautiously because it can either be very significant or extremely detrimental for the followers.

Media as a Negative Influencer of Substance Abuse:

Report published by Pediatrics stated that there is promotion and sensation of substance abuse in the media. Since 1996 to 2004 it was found that 75% of the movies were rated G, PG, or PG-13 and the case was worse for the R rated films(Narconon Reviews, 2013). The Hollywood also provides the public with depiction of illicit drug use and as per a recent study in Columbia it has been found that the people who watch these R rated movies are more likely to try Marijuana.No matter if it is purposefully or ignorantly being attempted to popularize these drug use it is the responsibility of media.

Ajans Press is a company in Turkey that was monitoring the media have reported that in 2015 the number of articles published on substance abuse were 39,896 which drop to 32,379 in 2016 (Altay, 2017). The question was that whether these articles are following the principles of ethics of journalism. It was found that the substance abuse is been portrayed exclusively for particular sub cultural groups that is, children from stressed and poor families. The media is incapable of providing substantial solutions for the problem rather portraying it as "under the influence" which is not the right approach.

Media as a Positive Influencer of Substance Abuse

In an advertisement by renowned skier Chad Fleischer the message has been conveyed that drug is not cool rather it ruins the quality of life and affect the health detrimentally. In 1930, "Reefer Madness" was a film based upon anti-drug propaganda which spread the message that it is dangerous to use drugs. Another film in 1980 "Requiem for the Dream" illustrate how an individual can get stuck into pain and abuse by the dangerous Effects of drugs(Poznaik, 2018).

Therefore somewhere the media is trying to make some serious awareness and bring forward the detrimental effects of drug and other substance abuse. There are also motivational shows on the television like "House" where a drug addict Dr. House was a high functioning drug addict and when it was discovered he was sent to rehabilitation centre and after becoming clean he could join his work again. So here it is portrayed as how person can recover. This is also positive in some sense but should not be seen as an influencer that it is OK to be a drug addict and later recover.

Harmful Effects of Inaccurate Portrayal in the Media

There are many ways by which the media is harmfully affecting the society by depicting the untrue pictures and consequences of the people under the influence of drug. Illicit drug use ruins the life of youngsters. But the film that show the usage of drug and people addictive of it are really not the real life scenario. The harmful effects are as follows:

·         Increase in violence and crime is the main detrimental effect of drug being portrait inaccurately. Television and films have long term effect on the mind of Juvenile and influence crime.

·         It adversely affect the quality of life of people who are under its influence. It affect their education, profession, family life and also their old age. They become a servant of the drug. And sometimes people start living a false life.

·         It influences several hazardous health effects. Even though in the film the caption "smoking kills" is given none of the spectators take it seriously and feel that it is okay to use drug for some fun or entertainment (Poznaik, 2018).


The role of media is to make the relevant information available to the people so that they can make an informed decision. They should act as a responsible industry because they have substantial power in influencing the thought, activities and perception of people. This power should be used in creating awareness rather than depicting the incorrect untrue picture of the elements of the society. The awareness regarding substance use should not be explicit for any particular culture, population, gender, religion or members. It should be for all and must address the entire population so that it is not confined to any particular section.

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