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Complimentary Copy? Ownership and the Content of the Media

Uploaded by KyraDean on Oct 29, 2002

Complimentary Copy? Ownership and the Content of the MediaComplimentary copy, the ability to implicitly infer to consumers what is the right image to uphold through articles supporting advertisements, inevitably exists. The advertising world rules the media; what they write, how they write it, and what the consumer is given to read. All media is biased on this premise, that the media needs magazine writers to literarily illustrate their products. Later, or sometimes earlier, in the publication, the reader makes the subconscious connection with an advertisement supporting what the article ultimately portrays: an image of how and what the reader should strive to be like. Gloria Steinem and Noam Chomsky are two of modern history’s critical advertising media vocalists. In the 1970s, Steinem, a leader in the woman’s activism era, created Ms. magazine. The idea behind her magazine was to create a publication where within, women could find intelligent articles and advertisements, treating the female population intellectually competent and not desirable objects. Steinem was aware of complimentary copy and strived to abolish the practice in her own publication. Advertisers, who are the true controlling force found within the media world, demand the practice of complimentary copy. She found Ms. to be short lived, however, concluding that complimentary copy is what keeps all publications afloat and capturing advertiser’s financial support and interest. Noam Chomsky theorizes, “To server the interest of the powerful, the media must present a tolerably realistic picture of the world.” Obviously if advertisers were to “over-edit” the appearance of models to the point where they looked like exaggerations of Barbie dolls, their products would be thought of as a joke. He says there is an “elite” 20% of the population that is educated and playing an active role in decision-making. “The other 80% are referred to as the ‘bewildered herd.’ They are supposed to follow orders and keep out of the way of the important people. They are the target of the real mass media,” Chomsky says.

Personally, I wish to go into the magazine medium as a profession one day, and after previous experiences with mass media, I know that complimentary copy not only exists, but it is the only factor keeping publication editors in business. Steinem could have found more subtle methods of complimentary copy to keep her magazine in business, but she only one side of the matter. To her, she felt that selling out to advertisers...

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Uploaded by:   KyraDean

Date:   10/29/2002

Category:   Social Issues

Length:   5 pages (1,027 words)

Views:   2178

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