Trending: Call for Papers Volume 4 | Issue 4: International Journal of Advanced Legal Research [ISSN: 2582-7340]

The Role of Mass Media in Investigation

Investigation – AthensLive – Medium


In today’s time we don’t travel an ocean or wait for pigeon to get the news.  As time passed people use different modes to get information or to share information.  In current time, Mass media do all things like giving information, news and all the important things among audience. Mass media plays very a crucial role for an audience to get information that what is happening around society on a daily basis. It is a channel through which communication travel from one way to another. It is of mainly two type :- Print media and Electronic media.

Print media are like newspaper, magazines, books, banners, billboards, brochures, flyers, etc.

Electronic media are like TVs, radios, movies, internet podcasts, forums, etc.

Mass media and criminal justice system operate effectively with each other. It plays an important role in construction of criminality and criminal justice system.  Mass media promotes smoothness and vividness in any investigation by collecting or highlighting the key fact about the case. With the help of mass media an investigation promotes good practices in society and enables to face the consequences and challenges. For example :- Panama Gate scandal considered as an trend setting example. Another example is the case of Greoge Floyd murder, in which the video went viral and got attention at global level and led to the   revolution as ‘BlACK LIVES MATTER’.

Mass media is a crime prevention techniques that attempts to deal directly with fear of crime as well as the actual crime. Media presentation affects the fear of crime feelings of self – confidence in avoiding victimization. However, media can also play a major role in demanding investigation at any stage of enquiry. In case of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, the whole nation demanded CBI enquiry through electronic media and this case covers whole attention to the media so many ongoing debates are  having on different-different platform. In heinous crimes like rapes and murder also attract a substantial amount of media interest, especially in beginning of the incident .

And on the other side, the criminal justice system gives stories to the mass media because as we all know that media is the powerful tool for communicating ideas focused on an entertainment media. Like a famous web series, ‘Narcos’ on Netflix which based on the life story of Colombian smuggler Pablo Escobar. Many documentaries shows that how crimes happened and what are consequences of any crimes and many more topics related to crime. Through entertainment media real stories of crimes reached to the audience at global level. They all are viewed as essential for unraveling the relationship between crime, control, justice and a social order these news stories respectively reproduce moral boundaries, legitimate law and order and reinforce gender stereotype, all of which relief unequal power relations as well as inequality throughout the society. Nevertheless, within and without the news business there are also all kind of sources and values that shape the process of news in general and news making criminology in particular.

But mass- media also receive lots of criticism as many believes that mass media should have a sense of responsibility when they report on any crime lest they damage the image of  the country as well as create a undue fear among society. There is also high chances of leaking crucial information while getting information out which manipulate the mindset of the society. Press starts their investigation at their own and this may turn the case into other side and it  also make the person guilty before the  judgement come out. Take an example of Sushant Singh Rajput suicide case, in this a media plays very major role of taking interviews of different different persons and releasing crucial information and everybody assume that his ex girlfriend is guilty before the judgment come out and because of the involvement of mass media very types rumors also emerges and  make the case somewhere nasty.

Some it also happens that the elites tends to influence the media by money to broadcast the news that they want to be revealed and   may also affect the family of innocent and they won’t get justice because lack of money, media coverage and sometimes it also happens that media may not cover an  important and necessary news so that the poor person  could not get  justice because the other party has strong social backup. This type of thing mostly happens in the case of gangsters, they somehow manipulate the media for not covering their case like it is also noted that Dawood Ibhraim and Chotta Sakeel had threat the local media for not revealing their information in public

 In the US It was held that the company Cambridge Analytica uses public data through social media and manipulate the public in presidential election 2016. By this example, it also shown that there      are also chances of leaking the data of individual and it is also concern of privacy.

It is also shown that lots of hatred, rumors came from  the different platform of media and this turns into riots, violence and destroying public property, in recent time Bangalore riots can be seen as an example of this.

 One more reason for criticism of media in an investigation is that the way they represent the news of the families of the guilty person. It somehow leads to horrible experiences for them as they receive lots of trolling and threats via social media. And the information which is for victims should be checked because it will influence the degree of co-operation as well critical relationships with an victim’s families.

So, from above it is clear that if mass media is doing their duty with responsibility and sensibly, then it is very helpful for the audience as they can solve any case and give justice to the family of victims but if they take duty for granted and do their duty with biasness then it may harm the individual as well as the society. Media should sense their responsibility and do their duty with maturity. It also needs to be flexible and sensitive before giving any information. Nevertheless, we all aware that the media plays a very vital role in the investigation .

By- Varnita Tiwari


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