Define the statements as true or false. Underline the phrases in the text that support your answer.

a An average American is interested mainly in Hollywood blockbusters and TV talk shows.
b Some of the most important press standards in America were created in tough rivalry of the two publishers.
Tabloids focus on major national and international events, on unbiased information.
d The primary source of news for Americans remains the press.
e Radio drew the attention of huge audiences owing to on-the-spot reports of dramatic events in the 30-s and 40-s.
f Television first appeared after the end of World War II.
g The influence of television in the political scene during presidential elections cant be overestimated.
h News and public affairs constitute a considerable amount of public televisions prime time programmes.
i Americans tend to be dissatisfied with the journalists looking for and emphasizing the negative, the sensational events.
j Mass media help us to arm ourselves with the power knowledge gives.

2. Complete the following:

a In the early days of the new country the media meant__.
b Newspapers are the oldest__.
c Inspite of taking political stands it is essential for newspapers that__.
d Yellow journalism is__.
e Important daily newspapers focus on__.
f Radio began to spread throughout the United States in__.
g TV is most effective in covering__.
h Basically television is__.
i Commercial television is__.
j Public (non-commercial) television emphasizes__.
k Technology continues__.
l Critics complain that__.
m About half of American homes subscribe to__.


3. Find the passages in the text about:

a the role of technological progress in gathering and bringing information to peoples homes;
b the requirements to American press in the early 1700-s and since;
c canons of American journalism;
d todays standards of American press;
e the reason for the shrinkage of newspapers circulation;
f the effectiveness of TV in covering dramatic, action-filled events;
g the reasons for public dissatisfaction with American media;
h the violation of the right of individuals to privacy by the media.

4. Answer the following questions about the text:

a What did the media mean in the early days of America?
b What were the principles used by the two rival publishers Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Herst in their coverage of American and world events?
c What important daily newspapers shape public opinion? What do they focus on?
d What is the reason for the shrinkage of the circulation of newspapers?
e Who empowered the government to regulate and license broad casters?
f Why did TV become popular with the audience compared to radio? What are the advantages of TV over radio?
g What is traditionally neutral in politics radio and television or newspapers?
h What television is financed by advertising?
i What does public television emphasize?
j What is PBS?
k What causes public dissatisfaction with the American media?

Read the text Television news: words and images and:

a find the place where the author gives the explanation what actuality footage is;
b comment on the dictum () One picture is worth a thousand words.

As its name suggests, news deals with recent events: it strives to be up-to-date. Television news, in particular, aims to record and present events as they happen. This is one very important news value. Live or recent footage of an event itself or from the scene of an event helps TV news to present itself as in step with what is happening now.

Pictures gathered from the scene of an event are known as actuality footage. Actuality footage not only helps to anchor the news as much as possible in the here and now: it also helps to confirm the authenticity of the accounts which it offers. In other words, it not only shows us ongoing events; it shows them as if we can see them now, directly and for ourselves.

News editors are apt to quote the dictum one picture is worth a thousand words. However, although television news thrives on pictures, actuality footage is never self-explanatory and is never presented in silence. It always requires commentary. Indeed, the most polished news reports embodying actuality footage display a close fit between actuality and commentary, between words and pictures.


  1. A) Choose the correct answer.
  2. A. How would you personally start job hunting? Use the phrases in the box to help you.
  3. A. Read the text and decide if the following statements are true or false.
  4. A. Sarah and Ken are having an argument. Read what Sarah says and complete the dialogue with Kens answers from the box below. Then try to guess his last answer.
  5. Agree or disagree with the following statements.
  6. Agree or disagree with the following statements. Give your arguments to support your viewpoint.
  7. Agree with the statements of your partner.
  8. Agree with the statements of your partner.
  9. Agree with the statements of your partner.
  10. And write your own sentences with the same words and phrases.
  11. Are the following statements true or false? Correct the false sentences.
  12. Are the following statements true or false? If false, say why.

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American Mass Media | Writing

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