It goes without saying that in every society the means of mass media play a vital role as they make the transmission of the information to the large audience possible. The phenomenon of mass media has been evolving for centuries which resulted in a wide range of mass communication means, each possessing its specific features and purposes. In fact, modern media world represents a kind of industry which has its own market. Under the term “mass media,” scholars generally mean the tools that help transfer certain information, ideas, and concepts to the large number of readers, viewers, and listeners. The true value of the mass media cannot be overestimated as it performs several important functions such as educating, entertaining, communicating, and developing. Moreover, the power of mass media is in its diversity. People of all ages can choose the kind of mass media that is interesting for them and gives as much useful information as they need. However, in the modern times, there is a tendency of the media modernization. Traditional media means such newspapers, magazines, printed books among others become less popular. At the same time, the advances in science and technology have presented the world with the drastically new types of media, among which the Internet, blogs, social networks and others comprise a vast majority.
In order to cover the topic in detail, the general review of the so-called “old media” and “modern media” should be provided. As it was already mentioned, the means of the mass media have been prominent by their diversity. In the days of the past, the most popular were the printed media, which produced newspapers, magazines, and books. Not less significant were broadcast media which include radio and television. Despite the fact that modern types of media have appeared, the old ones seem to remain in trend as well, especially among the older generation. Nowadays, people still willingly read some educational articles in the popular magazines, get the news from the newspapers, sit in front of the TV and watch the favorite movie, or just amuse themselves by listening to a pleasant song played on the radio. As it can be noticed, the old forms of mass media still penetrate into the “free-time schedule” of the modern population and remain an integral part of their entertainment.
The popularity of the newspapers can be explained by the fact that they are always ready to provide people with the update information and describe the events that happen all over the world. Newspapers perform the function of collecting news and telling about everything that happens outside. Besides, it is a valuable source of information which informs people about the financial problems, issues in business and politics, some social events as well as about international news, achievements in science and technology, gossips about the celebrities, details concerning the prominent festivals, endeavors in the field of medicine, education, etc. There is no wonder that people still prefer to begin their working day with a fresh newspaper, which they are looking for every morning. Newspapers usually keep the society informed about everything that happens in the country and abroad. They give as much of the useful information as they can hold on their pages. Certainly, this type of media makes the views of the readers wider, gives new knowledge and sometimes even skills.
Another representative of the old media worth discussing is magazines and journals. These types of mass media provide a wide range of information that is useful both in theoretical and practical aspects. At present, there is an enormous choice of magazines and journals that will satisfy the requirements of the most critical reader. For example, people interested in fashion trends are usually fond of reading the famous fashion magazine “Cosmopolitan” which is always willing to recommend the most suitable clothes for the coming season. The readers who are not indifferent to their physical and psychological well-being often make their choice in favor of another popular magazine “Health.” “Financial Advisor” is one of the most powerful and interesting business magazines that gives the valuable information in the sphere of finances and business. On the pages of other magazines, one may find a lot about the political situation in the world, new discoveries, progress in science and technology. Reading such articles usually contributes to the enriching and developing of the person’s knowledge, while magazines provide the true and checked information.
Radio and television belong to the category of the traditional media, the popularity of which did not suffer after the appearance of the modern digital media. There were days when people could not live even a day without switching on their radios or TVs to enjoy their favorite program, show, or film. Still, it should be admitted that the situation has not drastically changed since then as radio and television have developed much. Radio still takes one of the leading positions and is an essential part of the people’s life. It is especially popular among individuals who have a very busy lifestyle and do not have enough time to read the newspapers and magazines. Besides, nowadays radio is a very comfortable means of mass media which successfully combines education and entertainment. While listening to the radio, one can not only delight in music but also get the weather forecast, short news about the world events and listen to the adverts. On the other hand, TV is even more popular as it offers a great variety of exciting TV shows, films, and soap operas. There is no doubt about it that most people like spending their free time in front of the TV. Housewives, the retired, and children comprise the largest number of the regular TV viewers. Modern TV system is much more convenient than the old one as nowadays each channel has its own specialization. For example, Discovery channel gives the educational information about the flora and fauna of the Earth, tells much about our planet and different discoveries that constantly happen. BBC is the world’s most famous news channel. The updated news from all over the world can be transmitted on this channel. Music lovers enjoy watching MTV, which is the most popular music channel. Therefore, each person has an opportunity to choose the TV channel according to their interests.