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MAC 111

INTRODUCTION TO MASS COMMUNICATION

2.Newspaper comments on the news in order to bring development into focus;

3.Newspaper provides the means whereby persons who want to sell goods and services can advertise their wares;

4.Newspaper campaigns for desirable civic projects and to help eliminate undesirable conditions;

5.Newspaper gives readers a portion of entertainment;

6.Newspaper serves readers as a friendly counselor information bureau, and champion of their rights.

3.3.5 The Penny Press

In the 1830s, there was the introduction of a new style of journalism and a new style of newspaper. Small newspapers with a lighter style, stressing not political issues but the crime, sex and gossip of the day, sold for one cent. The new publications ushered in the era of the penny press. It was a departure from the existing newspaper style, writing in dense prose and dealing with what often were complex political issues; thus an average American found little interest in these “Statesmen newspaper”.

The earliest penny press was the New York Sun, published in 1833 by Benjamin. H. Day. His innovation was to sell his paper so inexpensively that it would attract a large readership, which could then be sold to advertisers. Day succeeded because he anticipated a new kind of reader. Soon, there were many penny papers in all the major cities.

3.2.6 Yellow Journalism

The penny press not only proved that sensational news sold at an inexpensive price could be successful, it also laid the ground work for an era of another kind of journalism – Yellow journalism.

Leading participants were Joseph Pulitzer, publisher of the New York World and William Randolph Hearst, who became the editor of the San Francisco Examiner in 1887. Hearst became famous for his pranks while in Harvard and was eventually expelled. He got newspaper experience from Pulitzer’s World and returned to San Francisco to apply the lesson of sensationalism from the penny press to big-city journalism. With bold, eye –gripping headlines and various escapades to generate or report news, Hearst’s Examiner began to climb in circulation and profits.

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MAC 111

INTRODUCTION TO MASS COMMUNICATION

Hearst expanded his coast to New York and bought the New York Morning Journal, renamed it as the New York Journal. He hired one of Pulitzer’s top illustrators; Richard F. Outcault, that marked the beginning of an outstanding battle in journalism. Outcault had drawn a cartoon about life in New York‘s crowded tenement that featured a child cartoon character. The extremely popular “kid” appeared in a yellow dress and became known as “Yellow kid”. Outcault brought the kid to the Journal while George .B. Links of Pulitzer’s newspaper also had it within him. Appearing in the promotional literature of both newspapers, “the circulation war” was in full force, and a new title had been given to this era of sensational, competitive and in many ways irresponsible journalism- Yellow journalism. It remained as a way of selling newspaper well into the 1900s and can still be seen today.

SELF ASSESSMENT EXERCISE 2

Discuss the disadvantages of newspaper.

3.4Magazines

3.4.1 The Growth of Magazines

The first magazine was believed to have been started in 1704 by Daniel Defoe. It was a weekly periodical called the Review. Defoe’s Review was distinguished from the Newspapers of the era because he published features materials in addition to news.

Two publications – the Tattler and Spectator emerged out of the journalistic style of Defoe. Tattler was published in 1709 by Richard Steele while the Spectator came up in March 1711 by both Steele and Joseph Addison. The Spectator grew in London and was the first magazine to make a contribution to literature.

In the United States of America, Andrew Bradford began publishing American magazine in 1741,followed by Benjamin’s General magazine. Between 1741 and 1794, 45 new magazines appeared. Entrepreneurial printers with the intention to attract educated, cultural, moneyed gentlemen copied the successful London magazine. Subsequently, other magazines emerged. Some are the Saturday Evening Post, 1821;

Harpers 1850, and At1antic Monthly 1857.

Some factors that fuelled the growth of magazines include cheaper printing and growing literacy as well as the spread of social movement such as abolitionism and labour reform.

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