The Impact of the Mass Media on Rural Development
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Education through media has created substantial changes in the traditional concept of education, has eliminated most of the deficiencies of the traditional systems of education and has created fundamental changes in education (Charlton et al., 2002). Using the mass media has caused an increase in the knowledge level and the output of educational system in recent decades. It seems the main reason for the popularity of television lies in its simplicity for the audiences. Since people intend to choose the easiest way for learning and the simplicity can be found in television educational programs (Buren, 2000).
Television has proved that is a strong communication means and can affect the society a great deal. Television has been used for educational purposes after the World War II. In the beginning, Americans knew educational television similar to lesson television. Ekoja (2003) has mentioned that the information sources in different aspects of agriculture for the farmers are radio and television, the propagational publication, daily farm newspapers, agriculture exhibitions, practical education, and consultation services, respectively. Jenkins and his colleagues (2003) have conducted a research about the information technology used by the farmers of North California.
In Nigeria, the studies conducted by Arokoyo (2003) showed that although video, radio, and television are the major sources of information for the farmers of this country, in the case of establishing the foundations, it is also possible to use other developed equipment. In this country, the print media have a specific situation in agriculture transferring as well. Television is acknowledged as the most important medium for communicating with the rural populations of developing countries (FAO, 2001).
Despite their vaunted objectivity and self-acclaimed commitment to fairness, it can be argued that the Nigerian mass media has over the years, solely neglected the rural areas. The perspective of the Nigeria mass media was, and continues to be (despite some progress), strictly urban. The media reports and writes from the standpoint of an urban dweller’s world. The ills of the rural areas, difficulties of life there, their burning sense of grievance, are seldom seriously conveyed.
Media is undoubtedly very fast vast and powerful mode on communication. Nor does it only appeal a vast audience it has got a tremendous impact on the political run of a country and culture of a Society ,Films, T.V Shows, Journalism (newspapers and news channels) all come under short yet large “Media”. Mass Media perform the role of dynamic waterdogs and erects its fingers towards and backlog in a system. It diagnoses the system and opens the pit full and tries to rectify it. As we know our country in a democratic way of living and India has completed sixty five years of its independence it is still in its youth stage. Our country has been successfully serving as the largest democracy of the world. In last two decades it is observed that liberalism has its impact on various dimensions of the human civilization. Establishment of market economy creates challenges to heritage of our country. It affects the urban population most and gradually creeps in to rural circle.
This stratification of distribution occurs not only between urban and rural areas, as much pervious evidence attests, but more important the areas themselves, television is the mass media with the greatest diet bias in most developing countries and radio is the most generally available however, even radio is quite the social strata. The majority of rural people in underdeveloped countries are found to live in a state of “under communication.”
A great inequalities still hundred the potential use of mass media in availability in rural areas mirrors the unequal distribution of other resources. Even where mass media widely available serious reservation remains concerning the contribution of the information to a more equitable rural development.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Mass Media has been regarded as a valuable tool for economic, social and political development in the rural areas. Every community needs the full support of Government on rural development in order to be full civilized, even for them to know the basic needs and situation of the state economy, because of these reasons, it is imperative now for the Mass Media to be used as the only ways by which people will be nurtured on the new developments.
Despite all the changes brought about by information on social scene as well as in media remains a dominant factor with its capacity to appeal to the minds of people. Yet we often witness a tendency to take a very narrow view of media and limit our vision by our media use and our media habits. The whole range, scope and use of media has to be appreciated if want its application in solving the problems our society faces from time to time.The whole range and dimension of media has to be understood if we want to know how media can play a role in promoting the culture of development.
In the wake of increasing commercialization, media’s role in expressing public thoughts is shrinking and more constraints and barriers are developing in the way of free and fair interaction between the media and the public. Media and the information systems in the developing countries are being governed by dominant concepts of the urban areas. The developing countries can meet the challenge only through developing alternative concepts of media programming, which have roots in their own social and cultural settings.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The general objective of this study is to examine the impact of the mass media on rural development in Anambra East local government. The specific objects include the following:
1. To ascertain the usage of mass media among people in Anambra east local government area.
2. To find out the influence of the mass media on the dissemination of information in Anambra East LGA.
3. To determine the impact of mass media educating the rural dwellers in Anambra east local government.
4. To examine the influence of the mass media in addressing the socio-economic conditions of the rural dwellers in Anambra east LGA.
5. To investigate the relationship between mass media and poverty alleviation among rural dwellers in Anambra east LGA.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The relevant research questions related to this study include the following:
1. What is the usage of mass media among people in Anambra east local government area?
2. What is the influence of the mass media on the dissemination of information in Anambra East LGA?
3. What is the impact of mass media educating the rural dwellers in Anambra east local government?
4. What is the influence of the mass media in addressing the socio-economic conditions of the rural dwellers in Anambra east LGA?
5. What is the relationship between mass media and poverty alleviation among rural dwellers in Anambra east LGA?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H1 – there is a relationship between mass media and poverty alleviation among rural dwellers in Anambra east LGA.
H0 – there is no relationship between mass media and poverty alleviation among rural dwellers in Anambra east LGA.