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Four Theories of the Press: The Authoritarian, Libertarian, Social Responsibility and Soviet Communist Concepts of What the Press Should Be and Do (Illini Books) Paperback – October 1, 1963

ISBN-13: 978-0252724213 ISBN-10: 0252724216 Edition: 1st Paperback Edition

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: University of Illinois Press; 1st Paperback Edition edition (October 1, 1963)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0252724216
  • ISBN-13: 978-0252724213
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #897,262 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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About the Author

 

Fred S. Siebert is Director of the School of Journalism and Communications at the University of Illinois. Theodore Peterson is Associate Professor of Journalism and Communications at the University of Illinois. Wilbur Schramm, former Dean of the Communications Division of the University of Illinois, is Professor of Journalism and Communications at Stanford University.

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Larry VanDeSande VINE VOICE on June 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
"Four Theories of the Press" has, for years, been required reading for senior journalism students in most American universities. For many students, it is the only time journalism "ethics" was presented in the classroom even though the book is not about ethics. It is about four classic theories of the way mass media presents information to consumers. To summarize the four theories Siebert says:

-- The authoritarian system is owned by the state, which controls mass media. This is practiced around the globe in places like North Korea and Iraq.

-- The libertarian theory is essentially to journalism what laissez faire is to economics -- complete freedom of expression and ideas with no controls. This is essentially the World Wide Web.

-- The Soviet system is, like the authoritarian system, state-owned. The difference is the Soviet system regulates its own content. With the death of the USSR and its satellites two decades ago, the remaining users include Cuba and some African countries.

-- The social responsibility model was the American press beginning in the postwar period where muckraking and media investigation of wrongdoing was practiced to make the population wiser and to help improve society. This model existed in major media outlets up until about the time of the Internet. Now, with newspapers dying everywhere and electronic media competing not only with entertainment, cable outlets and the Internet, this theory is dust.

Today, the mainstream American press doesn't adhere to any of these theories. The social responsibility model requires resources most American media outlets no longer can afford including the resource that it can alienate its few remaining advertisers that pay the bills.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 26, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It helped with an assignment in Media Theory class. I got it very quick--no delay at all. It explained the theories clearly.
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