IELTS essay sample | Should government ask media to stop reporting violence?
Some people say that the government should stop TV and newspapers from showing crimes because media coverage of violent crimes is frightening people and encouraging criminals. Do you agree or disagree?
Media gives too much importance to violence because of its shock value. Violence frightens people. It disgusts them but at the same time it interests them. Media coverage of violence has both positive and negative effects on the society.
Generally speaking, people have too much interest in crimes. They enjoy reading about such events. That is the reason media covers such events. Violent stories disgust most people. They also encourage criminals. Just because some people will be encouraged to commit crimes after reading about them, the media should not be asked to stop covering such events.
The primary duty of media is to inform people of all the good and bad things happening in the society. Since violence is on the rise, media needs to report it. They, however, need to ensure that they are not promoting or glorifying such crimes.
Media coverage of violence has some benefits. On the one hand, violent events frighten people. On the other hand, it encourages them to take the precautions to stay safe. For example, parents who read about the abduction and murder of children will take the measures to ensure that their child does not become the next casualty. People often commit horrible crimes under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Youngsters who read about such crimes will think twice before indulging in such practices themselves. On the down side, excessive coverage of violence can make people insensitive to them. The vast majority of people who watch visuals of gory murders are repelled by what they see. Unfortunately, if we keep seeing such visuals, we will stop becoming affected by them. This apathy can be dangerous. Worse still, it can encourage people with criminal tendencies to commit similar crimes.
To conclude, coverage of violence certainly has both positive and negative impacts on the society. This, however, does not mean that the government should ask media to stop covering such events. Any such move will amount to curbing the freedom of the press.