The Relationship Between Politicians, The Media, And Citizens

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It is widely accepted that, for a democratic society to merely exist, let alone effectively function or flourish, the media and government must co-exist, while retaining independence, and healthy levels of scepticism. This symbiotic relationship informs the general public of significant issues, and, theoretically, safeguards against power or influence corrupting either of these institutions. Politicians rely on the media to relay their policies, values, and actions, to wider audiences, while the media need this information to fulfil their fourth estate role, and convey engaging news. Nevertheless, the messages and information politicians convey, and the media’s resultant coverage, greatly impact voters’ perception of, and confidence in, the political system. Increasingly, there has been a shift from traditional, serious political coverage, towards representation characterised by simplicity, entertainment, and arguably, trivialisation. This essay will critically analyse the relationship between politicians, the media, and citizens, and the effects this shift has had on the voting public, to ultimately ascertain, who, if anyone, is at fault for this trend. Therefore, it will argue that while the trivialisation of politics can influence voter’s faith in, and engagement with, the political system, this is a deeply nuanced issue, reflective of natural progressions of longstanding, and interconnected, issues, rather than malicious or cynical actions worthy of blame. To demonstrate…

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