The to our society which are surveillance, interpretation, linkage,

The course that we are studying is AHMC 1084 Mass
Media and Society while the title for the assignment is to write an essay to
suggest five functions of mass media in society included how people use these
media from the uses and gratification perspectives.             There
are eight types of mass media industries in our Malaysian society: books,
newspapers, magazines, recordings, radio, movies, television, and internet.
These media bring a lot of functions to our society which are surveillance,
interpretation, linkage, transmission of values, and entertainment.            From
the uses and gratification perspective, we study about how people use mass
media for cognition, diversion, social utility, affiliation, expression, and
withdrawal purposes.            Throughout
the assignment, we are able to explain the five functions of mass media for
society in Malaysia and identify the reasons why people in Malaysia use mass
media.  

             Mass
media plays an important role in educating Malaysia society. One of the
functions of mass media in educating Malaysian society is surveillance as known
as a watchdog role that circulating news and information. The Malaysian society
always rely on media to provide them a wide variety of news and issues that
happened around them. Therefore, it is important the mass media to provide
correct and useful news or information to the Malaysian society.            There
are two types of surveillance which are warning or beware surveillance and
instrumental surveillance. Warning or beware surveillance may happen when mass
media try to inform us about some cases such as dangers from monsoon wind
seasons, landslide, unstable economic conditions, dengue fever and so on. These
are the cases that happen frequently and they will bring a lot of unwanted
effects to the Malaysian society. For example, on 5 November 2017, The Star
Online had reported news about the Penang Flood to advise the victims to be
patient and stay safe as the state government will try its best to help those
in need. (Shiying, 2017) Thus, Malaysian society can
receive these warning and keep themselves away from danger through mass media.            Instrumental
surveillance refers to the transmission of information that is useful and helpful in
everyday life. (Baba J. , n.d.) For example, news about
the petrol price in Malaysia, the highlights of Budget 2018, the new MRT line,
and the promotion in AEON Shopping Mall are the instrumental surveillance.
Within these information, the Malaysian society can live their lives more
efficiently and make a better decision.   Interpretation is defined as the
process of explaining and giving an opinion with the person or own
understanding toward the object, topic, etc… (Bello, 2012) For example, the finance minister and the
prime minister of Malaysia, Dato Sri Najib is giving opinion or the citizens
giving their opinion about the budget 2018. Those are aged around 30 to the mid
40  saying that the government is taking
out too much of our citizens’ money to do too many unnecessary things and this
action will cause inflation and lower down the financial capability of the
citizens. However, some of the citizens from the age of 50 and above saying
that the government is doing a good job taking out so much money and putting
more effort on making the country become better. For example, the government is
planning on constructing more line for the LRT to encourage the younger
generation to use more public transportation instead of using their own car and
it also can cut down the air pollution rate. Besides, interpretation plays role
for everything, starts from giving a simple opinion to friends and this may
change their mind of thinking. Quoted by Ramon Navarathnam in his opinion
“What is there for our economy? Saying that the government himself have to
explain more about thinking behind that budget not only the face of the
budget” (NEWS, 2016).
In the aspect of education, mass media plays important role to allow people
improve their way of thinking and how they look about the things in daily
basis. Quoted by J.Gonzalez-Mena “the specific medium Television has one
of the greatest socialization effects in influence young child from the age of
10 to 18, because by watching they have a feeling of interacting but they are
not” (Gonzalez-Mena, 2010).          The definition of linkage is the mass media can join
together different elements of society that are not directly connected.
(Dominick, 2011) In other words, mass media is a method that linking people
with other people such as individual or organisation in other countries.
Dominick (2011) mentioned an example that mass advertising attempts to link the
needs of buyers with the products of sellers. By using some websites or
smartphone apps such as eBay, Taobao, Lazada and so on the buyers and the
sellers can be connected. Thus, the public can be proceeding the business
easily.            Besides,
some poor people or some organisation try to raise money for the treatment of
certain diseases or natural
disasters are another example of this linkage function. For example,
they will try to broadcast the news of those suffered from the disease or
natural disasters, mass media help in raising fund and provide the collected
amount to the victims.  They can
broadcast the news through newspaper, radio, television, social media such as
Facebook, Twitter and so on. For an example, newspaper The Sun Daily had
launched a news on 5 November 2017 about Penang floods relief fund to call on
all Malaysian to donate bigheartedly to help the victims that affected by the
unprecedented level of flooding in the region, especially Penang. (Daily, 2017)            Another
type of linkage occurs when geographically separated groups that share a common
concentration are linked by the mass media. This function is also called
‘public making’ ability of the mass media. For instance, individual that
concerned in environment, geography and science form a group and this
phenomenon may account for the growth of some movement. Therefore, these social
groups may bring about some main action because of the quickly mobilized. For
example, some health programmes inspired people to become health conscious or
beauty contests telecast generated beauty mindfulness. (KAMAT)The definition of
transmission of values as known as socialization is the ways an individual comes to adopt the behaviours and values
of a group (Dominick, 2011). Our society is
described by the mass media in the form of seeing, watching, listening or reading.
For example, we learn how people supposed to act from the media as this is the
important values that affect our daily life (Bello, 2012). Mass
media shows the audiences how they should act and shows the expectation toward
them. Moreover, television program is a
large reflect to the society as they broadcast and promote the understanding of
a society’s cultural heritage. For example, children’s television programs are
designed to showcase good behaviors and moral standards which children can
learn by watching. Astro Xiao Tai Yang is a one of the popular children
program in Malaysia that can let the younger generation to have a good moral
concept such as children have to learn how to respect others’ cultural,
manners, love their parents, appreciate everything they have and so on. Tong
Tong’s wonderland is a show that teach children to have a good moral
through singing and dancing thus it will be more effective to the children.
Mass media try to show younger generation value in education because moral
value is very important in improving their behaviors in the society.      Mass
media are the wonderful sources of pleasure and amusement. Television and radio
arrange many different programs for pleasure and amusement of mass people. Newspapers
and magazines published articles on literary and cultural events, sports, story
etc that also provide entertainment to the readers (Communication, 2013).Mass media also
assist in reducing stress. Newspaper, magazines, radio, television and online
medium offer stories, films, serials, and comics to entertain the audiences. Media outlets, and entertainment blogs keep us up to date
on the daily comings and goings of our favourite celebrities. People use
technology to watch movies, play video games, watch YouTube videos, and listen
to songs from internet on a daily basis. (Anon.,
n.d.). This popular function of the mass media helps to relax people and create
a means of escape from the stress of everyday life (Anon., n.d.).The audiences
can also rely on media for taking them to places that they could not afford to
go or imagine and improve their understanding of other countries’ culture. The entertainment function of mass media has both
positive and negative effects. Low-quality content is often criticized is the
negative effect, but for the benefits are helping people experience new things,
stimulating emotions and helping people spend time.People are able
to participate directly within the media by posting their own videos, art and
other creative works. People can start their small businesses by taking this
opportunity. Individuals can simply and inexpensively create and post
electronic commercials and virtual billboards that have the potential to reach
thousands of potential customers (Bradley, n.d.). People expect to acquire information,
understanding, creativity and critical thinking skills by using mass media. People watch news mostly to gratify this need. News
junkies report they watching TV is all about keeping up with the latest
information of the day. If they don’t get to watch TV for several days, they
report feeling uncomfortable about the information they know they’ve missed
(Griffin, 2012). People use media to access
information and fulfill their mental and intellectual needs. For
example, watching the local news to find out how to dress for tomorrow’s
weather (Mishra, 2017). People use
analog and digital media resources to learn about the news and current issues.
For example, the elder generation may watch the news on TV to stay updated, but
the younger generation may check out Twitter to read and know about the
trending articles (Kane, 2015). In Malaysia, educational programming like the
documentary program “Tawai” can teach us about the environment and other places
around the world. Mass media such as
documentaries also help people in thinking and understanding process. Other
examples can be quiz programs, teaching programs, arts and crafts programs for
children, how-to videos (DIYs), etc. Students in Malaysia watch UPSR or SPM
teaching programs to learn and study. Online media, Internet, also being used
in getting information to satisfy the demand. Mass media intend to
assemble these learning objects into simple or complex arguments, in creative
and innovative fashion, as demanded by their specific learning aims outlined in
their school-curriculum or proposed in a contemporary educational perspective.
These argumentations, whether subtle or complicated, essentially enable an
individual learner to construct new knowledge and enhance overall cognitive
learning experiences.
            Diversion
means an action that change your mood to focus on something and take your
attention away from something else. Diversion can be separated into three which
are stimulation, relaxation and emotional release.            Stimulation
has same meaning as encouragement which is an action that causes someone to
become more active. Mass media is a medium that can affect the users’ mood
through a movie, a slogan, a fiction, a magazine and so on. For example, the
movie “The Theory of Everything” shows the people how Stephen William
Hawking fights against his disease and continue his research. This movie will
be a motivation to those who are giving up on life.            Next, relaxation is the
state of being free from tension and anxiety. Mass media can help the people
being free from tension and anxiety through radio, book, TV program and so on.
For example, the TV program such as the variety show “Running Man”
is funny and it makes people laugh non-stop. People can get relaxation easily
through this kind of TV program.            For
the emotional release, people who are suffering from stress can use mass media
to release stress. Online social media like Facebook and Twitter allow users to
share their opinion and feeling. For example, people can share their film
review on their blogs after watching movies, express their opinions about the
advantages and disadvantages of the Budget 2018 and some more. 

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 Social utility is something the
viewer needs so that they are able to satisfy them in many ways through medium such
as watching a movie in the cinema or maybe listening to the radio and more.
Social utility can be divided into two types, parasocial relationship and
conversational currency. Parasocial relationship is the feeling of the sense of
friendship or an emotional feeling that is attach that occurs between TV
viewers and the media. This parasocial relationship happens when there is an
involvement when popular peoples for example like Song Jong Ki, actor in the
drama “Decedents of The Sun”. Those feelings are experience with
different kind of ways with various people in the world including seeing
personalities as friends, seeking guidance from a media person, desiring to
meet the media performers (Em
Griffin, 2012). Next, conversational currency is a using media as
common ground for connecting with the others and able to connect with those
that also have the same interest.

 Affiliation is a person’s desire to
feel the sense of belonging of involvement within the social group (Bello, 2012). The primary of
the medium that able to fulfill the function for individuals is the social
media like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and more. For example, the article
about a Korean famous artist and comedian Kang Gary was getting married in few
week time and even having a baby with his wife and did not even tell the fans
about it. So, people from the insiders who knew about the news and post it into
the fan page so that the fans are able to read the article find connection and
giving opinion with each other individual by interacting with the topic. It
also helps to start a conversation with other people about the specific topic
that the group is talking about. In the aspect of education, for example the
teacher can talk about some trending method to make students to study more
efficiently, during their discussion both teacher and student is making
connections and they can understand more about each other. 

 Expression is a self-expression refers to individuals that evince
their inner thoughts, feelings and opinions which is also called as
microanalysis. The early human beings do cave drawing as a need of
self-expression and this is the first example that show expression is an
important function for the individual (Bello, 2012). Besides, the self-expression
also has been full-filled primarily by creative and artistic activities such as
music, dance, painting, writing and sculpture since the early time (Bello,
2012). Nowadays, the technology has become advance day by day, the internet has
opened the new prospect for self-expression. People can express their thoughts
and feelings through many ways such as blog, Facebook, Twitter and so on. For
instance, people can comment their opinions on an article in the social
application after they watched a movie or their feeling about the things
happened today such as anger, sadness or happiness.  Due to the Penang flood, the people will
share their sadness about the it and post it on Facebook.
 Withdrawal describes individual using
the mass media to create a barrier between themselves and other people or
activities (Baba, 2015). In other words, when people did not want to be disturb
by others or by the noises that made by the environment, they will use the mass
media to create a space between themselves and those unwanted stuffs. For
example, the mass media help people avoid certain chores that should be done by
them. People will use like they want to watch the programme first as an excuse
to postpone or escape from doing housework or stuffs that they did not want to
do. This defined that attending to the mass media is a socially appropriate
action that should not be interrupted and intermittent. In this manner other
work might be postpone or evaded completely (Dominick, 2011).Mass media also used by people as a
method to create a buffer zone between themselves and other people. For
instance, when you do not want to be disturbed by others while you are riding a
bus or sitting in a public place, you can just bury your head in a book,
magazine or newspaper and you can just surfing the internet by using your
smartphone (Dominick, 2011). If you are on an aeroplane or an intercity bus,
you may just pop in your iPod or MP3 earphones and tune everybody out from your
world (Baba, 2015) or you may enjoy watching a drama or movie by using laptop,
iPad or smartphone. 

             As a
conclusion, there are five functions of mass media in our society. For
surveillance, people in Malaysia society use mass media to follow up news and
information, keep themselves away from danger and live their lives better. For
interpretation, people use mass media to give opinions and it improves their
ways of thinking. For linkage, mass media joins different elements of society
together so that they can share a common concentration. For transmission of
values, some important values and behaviour can be shaped through mass media.
For entertainment, mass media provides plenty of pleasure and amusement for the
people.            The
uses and gratification included cognition, diversion, social utility,
affiliation, expression and withdrawal. For cognition, people get data,
information and knowledge by mass media. For diversion, people use mass media
to stimulate, relax and release stress. For social utility, mass media can
connect the people with same interest together. For affiliation, people can
feel the sense of belonging of involvement within the social group. For
expression, people can share their thoughts, feelings and opinions to each
other. For withdrawal, mass media create a barrier between people themselves
with others.            The
similarities between functions of mass media in society and uses and
gratification is people can gain information and knowledge just like the
surveillance function and cognition. People are able to get news from newspaper
and extra knowledge from documentary program. Besides, people from different
places are connected together just like the linkage function and social utility
because they share the same interest and thoughts. Moreover, people can relax,
release stress, enjoy themselves through mass media just like the entertainment
function and diversion.