The media shapes public opinion as much as it reports it. In our aptly coined “information age”, which allows virtually anyone with cable TV, radio or an internet connection to access the media at any moment in time, the content of these media portals has never been more important.
Yet ever increasing pressure to attract viewers due to this explosion of choices has caused many of the mainstream media portals to drift away from reporting on the most important issues of the day, to those that are most likely to sell.
The American public’s low interest and literacy with regard to environmental issues despite the fact that these issues affect all of society in profound and unparalleled ways, is one symptom of this shift. In other words, the media’s influence on our nation’s environmental literacy is clear, and unless a greater effort is made to uphold this responsibility, our nation will likely continue to be plagued with apathy, misunderstanding, and lack of support for solutions that address the growing threats to the very habitability of our planet.