- Brief introduction.
- Statement of thesis
- Influence of the media in shaping views.
- People depend on media to make sense of world
- Media creates a pseudo environment
- Pseudo environment makes people to make certain decisions
- The world is politically out of reach.
- People should explore report and imagine the world
- The pictures in people’s head make up their opinions
- Some factors hinder people access to facts.
- Creating pictures of the world.
- An object body should be created
- Government should work to ensure all people have consent
- Brief summary of points
- Restatement of thesis
Walter Lippmann’s, The world outside and the pictures in our heads, is a very interesting article that introduces the conception of the stereotype and the explanation of how the public opinion is formed and manipulated. He explains in an elaborate manner how the pictures that arise spontaneously in peoples mind come to be, he contends that the only feeling that a person can have about a particular event that they do not experience, is the feeling that is aroused by their mental image (Lippmann 273). As Lippmann explains, the present news media is a major source of mental images that people have in their head. The media priorities greatly influence that of the public in a big way.
Lippmann argues that, what people do is based not on the direct knowledge or the hand grasping the other hand, but on the pictures that are made by people and given to them. In this regard, people immediate experience is limited and they have to depend on the media in order to make sense of the world beyond their immediate experience. The media is responsible for the creation of a pseudo environment, the role of the pseudo environment is to intervene between the self and the world and allow people to make sense of what happens in the world (Lippmann 274). Lippmann argues that since the pseudo environment created by the media makes people to make certain decisions, it is vital for the mediation to be done in the right way. Lippmann’s theory is extensively extended to the interior world by his explanation, which contends that what men theorize is enough proof, that their interior representations of the world is a determining element in thought, feeling and action (Lippmann 274).
Lippmann contends that the world is politically out of reach, and for this reason it is imperative to explore, report and imagine it. He further explains that, the pictures in people’s heads make up their public opinions. According to Lippmann some of the factors that hinder people’s access to facts, include;
- Artificial censorship
- Limitations brought by social contacts
- Lack of time for paying attention to the public affairs
- Challenges arise because events have been compressed in short messages.
- The difficulty of making small vocabulary express the complicated world
- The immense fear of facing those facts that can threaten the established routine of people’s lives
According to Lippmann, it is important for people to create pictures of the world; however, as they create the pictures, something needs to be done in regards to the world’s complexity (Lippmann 275). Lippmann advocates for the creation of an objective body of experts, whose role would be to take data from the outside world, reflect the data and synthesize it to produce accurate pictures of the world, in simple terms this body of experts would in the form of a government by technocracy. The government will work to ensure that all people have consent since it will not deal in finding its source in the actions of ordinary people, but once that is concerned with the efficient outcomes (Lippmann 276). Lippmann contends that it is important to organize the public opinion for the press; the press should not be made to organize public opinion as they do today.
Lippmann, Walter. Public Opinion. New York: MacMillan Co, 1922.