While Legislative, Executive and Judiciary are the three pillars of Democracy, Media has emerged as another more significant pillar of democracy in today’s world. Historically media has played an important role in governing and developing nations, in today’s world, with the increasing presence and influence of electronic and social media, the role of media has become more and more prominent. Media has the task of keeping the public informed about the happenings around the world. Not only just covering the incidents, but also providing the proper details. The Media professionals act as the watchdogs of society.
Media is that pillar of democracy which is always supposed to favor the public and show them the truth. Whether it is a political activity or a policy decision-making, it is the Media that can influence the public opinion on making valid decisions. Election of electoral representatives or even formation of the government is the results of public opinion influenced by Media.
Media provides transparency in the government. Only the fear of being exposed can restrict the corrupt individuals from unlawful activities. If the media does not uncover them or starts supporting them, they will rule without fear. The media today, has the power to transform the system for the betterment of masses. which is not favorable for masses or democracy.
Media should act like a mirror, which shows or strives to show the bare truth and harsh realities of life to the masses. However in certain cases such as those involving national security, religious sentiments or personal life and dignity of public figures, Media is expected to exercise self-censorship so that the fabric of society is not ruffled.
In the words of Malcom X “The media’s the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that’s power. Because they control the minds of the masses.”