How Does the Media Influence Public Agenda?

media-influence-public-agenda Credit: John Ragai/CC-BY 2.0

According to Fresno State, the media influences the public agenda using agenda setting. Agenda setting is a process in which the mass media determines what the general public thinks and worries about.

Reporters, writers and editors are just part of a series of checkpoints that news, information and entertainment must go through before it is presented to the general public. Agenda setting has two main levels. The first level determines what common subjects are the most important to the media audience, and the second level determines what parts of that subject are important. This can be important during political debates because the candidates will try and focus on issues the public wants to hear.