How does mass media (social media, advertisements, propaganda, campaigns, commercials, etc.) respond to religious intolerance? 

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The way that mass media responds to religious intolerance isn't uniform. It varies based on the media outlet, the society the media outlet is operating in, and the religion in question. For example, the culture in the US is tolerant and supports individual freedoms. Therefore, when religious intolerance is expressed, large media outlets in the US may use their platform to reaffirm their core values. They might run news stories that demonstrate how intolerant the people who are speaking out against a particular religion are. They could post these stories to their social media accounts. Media outlets may also run commercials that essentially advertise for tolerance. They might showcase individuals from two different religious backgrounds working together, for example.

The media in a country like Israel could respond very differently to religious intolerance against Judaism. Israel has feuded with neighboring Islamic countries since the country's inception. Mass media in Israel could respond to religious intolerance with more extreme news stories, commercials, or ad campaigns, than would US-based media networks.

However, the same intolerance towards Judaism or Christianity may get little to no play in the media apparatus of a predominantly Muslim country like Saudi Arabia. Similarly, intolerance towards Muslims may get little news play in Israel. This underscores the importance that societal values play in shaping what is deemed intolerant and what is deemed newsworthy. When trying to predict how a specific media company will respond to religious intolerance, try to assess where the media outlet is based, what beliefs may shape their broadcasts, and the values of the broader society they belong to.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team