Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Cohen “News Values, ideology and the Religion Story”

The Coen Article started of by introducing the supreme court case from the 1994 appeal of Playboy over broadcasting in Israel. The author stated that it is important that in understanding the "construction of religious news" we must understand the  "psychological and ideological news values" The article goes on building ground work by defining news as a "Crisis involving religion".  The article explains how news and  to many religions in israel is defined as something not only close to the audience geographically but also religiously. It also goes on to explain how Religious Icons (Rabbis)  are typically more prominent than other individuals in the news. The article goes on to explain how in 2000 when many media sources where polled it showed that 10% of the coverage was over religion in secular outlets. It found also that there where more television stories covering religion than news papers. Conversely in the United States, religion was more popular in the Newspapers. Cohen goes on to  write that politics and religion are the most covered subjects and that the most covered topics of the two are intact religious political parties. In the jewish media Cohen elaborates the elitism or elites in the religious sector such as chief rabbis take a large percentage of the religious media coverage. Cohen continues by stating that ultra Orthodox Jews count for a major percent of the news coverage but a small percentage of the actual Jewish population. In this section he continued elaborating how small sects took up large portions of the media coverage. In the next section Cohen explained how in areas of higher populations of different religious faiths that where larger than Judaism where found to be covered more in the news, for example the headquarters for the lutheran church in Minneapolis. Cohen goes on to talk about Ethical constraints and how there is no "tradition of complete freedom in Israel" like there dis in the U.S. The extent to what the news is restrained is based off of the Public and Official institutions as well as the influences of society. He goes on to discuss instances of ethical refute when one figure would do something 'un-ethical' like the case involving Dor Zadik and the questionable background. He also explained how the method of news being spread affected the public reaction using instances when Rabbis where accused of crime and how the public reacted differently to each. One was announced via a rumor, another by a group of Rabbis and finally by a newspaper. Cohen explains that Rabbis are often the center of news publications and scandals and that there is not a consensus among Rabbis on weather or not it is an ethical practice . He goes on to explain that Israeli law prohibits Damaging of religion or religious figures showing just how rooted religion and the Jewish faith are in Israeli society. One major problem that is being faced as explained by Cohen is the actual broadcasting of television and radio on the Sabbath. The article goes on explaining the pros and cons of the broadcast and explains how in wartime the benefits of utilizing the broadcast system to alert of rocket attacks would be invaluable. He goes on to articulate the moral and ethical dilemmas faced with broad cast and news. In all the Article explains how Jewish society handles the influences of modern media and how some have accepted it but many are still not on board. The article argues that media affects the way religion is perceived by outsiders and is poised to cater toward those religions that are more abundant geographically. The article also emphasizes how religion in israel in a sense controls media or the censorship of it via political and social power. 

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