Mass media in the United States

Mass media in the United States consist of several types of media: television, radio, cinema, newspapers, magazines, and web sites. The U.S. also has a strong music industry. New York City, Manhattan in particular, and to a lesser extent Los Angeles, are considered the epicenters of U.S. media.

People using smartphones, devices associated with young people, but commonly used by people of all ages

Many media entities are controlled by large for-profit corporations who reap revenue from advertising, subscriptions, and sale of copyrighted material. American media conglomerates tend to be leading global players, generating large revenues as well as large opposition in many parts of the world. With the passage of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, further deregulation and convergence are under way, leading to mega-mergers, further concentration of media ownership, and the emergence of multinational media conglomerates. These mergers enable tighter control of information.[1] Currently, five corporations control roughly 90% of the media.[2][3] Critics allege that localism, local news and other content at the community level, media spending and coverage of news, and diversity of ownership and views have suffered as a result of these processes of media concentration.[4]

Theories to explain the success of such companies include reliance on certain policies of the American federal government or a tendency to natural monopolies in the industry, with a corporate media bias.

The organization Reporters Without Borders compiles and publishes an annual ranking of countries based upon the organization's assessment of their press freedom records. In 2013–14, United States was ranked 46th out of 180 countries, a drop of thirteen points from the preceding year.[5][6] A 2022 Gallup poll showed that only 11% of Americans trust television news and 16% trust newspapers.[7] On the future of Spanish-language media in the U.S., Alberto Avendaño, ex-director of El Tiempo Latino/Washington Post, claimed that "Hispanic-American" news coverage in the English-language media is "absolutely pathetic," but he was optimistic, arguing that demographic shifts would inevitably render the Latino media a significant presence in the context of American media.


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