IELTS Writing Task 2 Topic:
Some people think that there is a great influence of news media on people’s lives and this is a negative development. Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Give your opinion and relevant examples.
Band 8.5 Model Essay 1:
For many people, news is a regular pan of life. An issue in dispute is whether the massive influence of the news media on people’s daily lives denotes a negative development. It is my view that news media does more good than harm to the society.
The news media provides people with much of the information they need on a timely basis, although there are claims that it reports on issues and events purposely (only selecting those events that interest the audience). Anecdotal evidence shows that people from all walks of life have the habit of collecting information regularly from the news media, including print, broadcast and Internet-based media. Information assists people in decision making. For example, the Free Trade Agreement reached by the Chinese government and its New Zealand counterpart might open up many opportunities to both countries. For any business person, either in New Zealand or in China, failing to recognise and capitalise on this impending change would cause a costly loss.
Meanwhile it should be recognised that the news media can sometimes save lives and reduce casualties. There is a lot of uncertainty about the surroundings, and people are susceptible to the damage caused by accidents, crimes and natural calamity. The news media conveys the firsthand information to concerned audiences and enable them to take corresponding actions right away. The authority can declare a state of emergency when it is necessary, organise evacuation and distribute aid to the needy areas. All these efforts count on the news media as the messenger.
Despite their significant and ongoing contribution to the society, the news media might sometimes be harmful to society. It is a convention that the news media exaggerates the magnitude of the real threat (for example, the potential of a terrorism attack), in order to draw the attention of the desired audiences and in pursuit of high audience ratings. It ends up with causing panic among the population. Meanwhile, the news media tends to emphasise some issues or events, which virtually have little relevance to people’s daily lives, such as an occasional multiple vehicle accident, an affair that a celebrity is involved with, and the like. It distracts the audience from something that is much more noteworthy, for instance, poverty, environmental problems, to name but a few.
In summary, the role of news media as an information provider should be acknowledged. In case of emergency, it acts as a lifesaver. However, it is not to say that the news media can give people an overall view of the problems in society all the time.
- denote = indicate = symbolise = represent = signify
- capitalise on = take advantage of = make the best of
- impending = imminent = forthcoming = coming = approaching
- casualty = fatality = victim
- surroundings = environs
- calamity = misfortune = catastrophe = disaster
- firsthand = immediate
- corresponding = relevant
- messenger = courier
- magnitude = scale = enormity = level
Band 8.0 Model Essay 2:
The influence of media is growing stronger and stronger as time passes. The speed at which news travels around the world has become faster with the advancement in technology. A lot of people believe this influence to have more drawbacks than the merits. This essay shall discuss both views and offer a reasonable conclusion.
Gaining information on current events has become quicker and easier as people have a host of resources on which they can depend on for news about the world, like TV news channels, radio broadcasts, newspapers, internet, smartphone applications and so on. Sharing and exchanging of views on the same has also become quite popular. Apart from panel discussions on news channels, public forums on the internet also let us know the various reactions people have to a certain piece of news – like the comments on Facebook under any news article – that shape our opinions. However the pressing question is whether these determinants are for the better or worse.
Too much dependence on anything is never good, which exactly sums the scenario of people’s growing dependence on news media. For instance, many news channels nowadays keep on looping the same (maybe insignificant) news piece all day long, hammering it in the minds of unsuspecting people. The many small media houses that are cropping up are deemed to be corporate sell-outs that publish news relating to the interests of the party that funds it, and cater to the masses by putting out the most sensational news stories.
The freedom of sharing opinions about any issue also can be feared to seed stereotypical judgements into people’s thinking. This is bad especially for developing and under-developed nations, where a majority of the people are not rational enough to be exposed to the press. For example, news about a plane crash focusing on the casualties and the dangers of the crash, instead of the relevant things like structural stability, changes the attitudes of such kind of people towards that risk regardless of its real probability.
Weighing all the arguments presented above, I can conclude that the growing influence of news media is definitely a bad development on people’s lives. Unless the news informants take a firm hold of their responsibilities towards journalism, over-reliance on such news sources can be detrimental.
(379 words, written by Devanshi Shah)