Mass Media As Tools For Social Development

Project and Seminar Material for Mass Communication

Mass Media As Tools For Social Development


The study focuses on mass media as tools for social development with a focus on Osun State Broadcasting Corporation. Mass media is one of the engines that propel the social development for its continuity and realization through: Informing, entertaining, and persuading. Mass media is a powerful tool for social change in any society. The study is anchored on developmental media theory and cultivation. The research adopted survey research method in carrying out the work. Simple random sampling method as a probability technique was used in selecting one hundred (100) respondents who answered the questions in the questionnaire out of which ninety (90) copies of questionnaires were retrieved for analysis. The data collected were analysed and interpreted using Descriptive Statistics (frequency and percentage). Findings show that majority of the respondents have access to both radio and television stations with the fact that both radio and television have brought social change to the people through social-cultural propagation programmes. It is recommended that media planners and those in charge of its control should empahasis on programmes and activities that will brings about development in terms of social, education, cultural and political matter.

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

This research touches on the various aspect of the radio programmes as instruments of social development. In other words, it explores into the radio programmes as a mobilization agency during the social transition period.

It is thus, an important assumption of the work that a systematic study of social development by radio programmes, should include an examination and the nature of operation of the mass media of communication in the Osun state broadcasting service (OSBC) Osun.

The mass media generally referred to both the print(s) and electronic media as supported in section 22 of the 1989 constitution of Nigeria.

The press, radio, television and other agencies of the mass media should at all times be free to uphold the fundamental objectives and highlights the responsibility and accountability of the government to the people.

The role of the radio programmes according to General Abacha in his maiden independence broadcast on the 1st October 1995 was to unform, educate and entertain the citizen.

Onyishi (1996) while highlighting on the role of the radio programmes in democracy notes that the press not only sustains the democracy principles but also end with transaction period. The media should help an ushering in democracy they should play a crucial role in nurturing and sustaining the success or failure of our practice of democratic government. Tolarge extent, their success depends on how well the radio programmes carries out their function as the mid wife of democracy.

This research therefore is intended to investigate how far the radio programme had fulfilled this allowed obligation. It is hoped that the result of the work will be useful to media practitioners in the proper performance of their duties.

1.2 Statement of the Research Problems:

In democracies, the mass media are the watch dog of the people. The citizen are usually mobilized and unformed to created awareness on the social culture.

By social culture, I refer to a system of politic in which sovereignty is vested on the people rather than a small clique, or an oligarchy, a social arrangement that places emphasis on the accountability of polity where the rule of law, majority rule and constitutionalism is the basic guiding principle.

Perhaps, it could be argued that the social crisis that pervaded our recent past points to the fact that most of our people are ignorant of an apathetic towards the country’s observe that in Nigeria electioneering and voting pattern cannot be validated, in the voting pattern of Nigerians and the possible estimation of the voter attitude towards social

1.3 Objectives of Study

The level of social participation in Nigerian and Osun state in particular seems to be very low. Also the social crisis occurring in this country has equally been attributed to several factors. The purpose of this study is to identify the reasons or reasons that have contributed to this low social participations in Nigeria politics.

In doing so, what usually comes to mind is to ask the question what is the reason for the low social participation in Nigeria politics and equally the causes of the constant social crisis? As usually, it may be traced to several factors like low level of awareness and tribalism, how can this awareness be obtained? This will lead us to this research topic.

Therefore, this study is intended to inquire into how social participation in Nigeria politics and equally trace the genesis of the social crisis that identifies the factors responsible and solution sought.

1.4 Significance of the Study

It is expected that this study would be immense benefit to the government, the mass media and the people of this country. This study will highlight the importance of the radio programmes as a vehicle for social development in a transition era.

Through the mass media, especially the radio and television Nigeria might have a chance of having a viable social culture and help to choose a leadership that will inculcate a viable and sustaining democracy. This will also give us a society blessed with.

As right put by GORAN HEDEBRO- “communication media can create a climate of change by including a new valves, attitude and models or behaviour favourable to mobilization, teach new skill act as a multipher of resources of knowledge, raise level of participation in decision-making, help people to find new norms and harmony in period of transition, change the power structure of the society by giving knowledge to this masses, create sense of nations, lead to increase social activity or participation, promote people’s need satisfying development as self perpetuating process.

1.5 Research Questions.

The basic question posted as a result of these problem includes the following:

  1. Have radio programmes been participating in social development in Nigeria and Osun state in particular.
  2. Has ethnic problem been hindering the smoothness of social development in this country?
  3. Can the masses in the country be mobilized and informed using radio programmes?
  4. What role has the radio programmes played to ensure a viable democracy?

1.6 Hypotheses

Hypothesis One
  • Hoi: There is effect of mass illiteracy on electronics media impact during social development.
  • H01: There is no effect of mass illiteracy on electronics media impact during social development.
Hypothesis Two
  • H02: Govt. ownership of radio stations (OSBC) has effected social development
  • H02: Govt. ownership of radio stations (OSBC) has effected social mobilization
Hypothesis Three
  • H03: OSBC has been efficient in promoting people’s interest in politics during social campaigns
  • H03: OSBC has been efficient in promoting people’s interest in social and business activities.
Hypothesis Four
  • H04: Ethnic problem has not been hindering the smoothness of social development.

1.7 Definition of Terms

Conceptual and operational definitions

1. Role
a. Conceptual:

Persons or duties in an undertaking.

b. Operational:

Function or part of the duty the radio programmes do to contribute national social development.

2. Mass Media
b. Conceptual:

Existing channel through which government and its citizens communication to each other or means through which greater number of people are reached spontaneously with information.

1.8 Limitation of Study

Since the research is directed as the radio programmes and social development, the research is content on the broadcasting media in Osun state. (i.e. the Osun State Broadcasting Corporation OSBC)

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Summary

In the preceding chapter, it was discussed that the performance of the station analysed in consonance with the hydrodemic (bullet) theory of mass communication. The view and responses obtained from the respondents is however negatively effective or under performance. According to the Hypodermic theory, peoples’ minds as hit with information from the media as the bullet hit target and this create effect where unavoidably, they submit and respond to it.

However, if their response is favourably or not to the respond desired.

Again, not understanding the social information avoiding is yet another problem militating against sizeable impact of the media as gathered in question 9, most of the respondent said their problems hinging on the language used in reaching them through the media. Most says the English language is prevalent. Therefore, they strongly solicit for the use of local government level where large groups share the same challant that are readily comprehensible by the people.

5.2 Conclusion

The mass media as an instrument of social development has led the researcher to draw conclusion on the interplay between the people and the media relationship in social situation. In the first place, we see that there are insufficient user of Radio/Television sets among the people and this affects social information aired because those who get it first hand are those who have Radio set and have socialinterest get distorted information from those who receive it first hand from the source. This weakens the effectiveness of the media information.

Secondly, the electronics media have seen assessed as inefficient in the proper mobilization although, the rest in politics the inefficient of mass media is greatly due to the loss of confidence that it tells the truth to the people.

Again, there are numerous primary secondary, commercial and tertian institution of learning in Nigeria, it has been formed in Osun and poses grave obstacle to mass media success in this primary role to education, entertain, uniform socialize and mobilize the people.

Finally, government monopolizing the ownership and the control of the mass media is a log in the wheel of national progress in politics. Most of the respondents are aware that he OSBC is a government owned media and because of press censorship, they agree that edited news and information is meaningless and unworthy hence, they are programme tool to maintain their stays quo. Since he who pays the pipe dictates the true.

5.3 Recommendations

This research had shown that the mass media have enormous responsibility to the electorate in a transition exahence the researcher based on the research finding makes the following recommendations.

  1. The media (Radio, Television and Print) have that literacy rate in Nigeria is still low and should make the language of communication simpler. Dialect is the best medium or channel to desired home for any social information desired to reach and mobilize the people.
  2. This view would go hand in hand with the establishment of media in the local government area where language infirmity is high amongst people of a particular group. Conventional ethnic language like the Igbo is not easily comprehensible to people in the interior (rural) area whose dialects may differ
  3. Seeing that literacy and ignorance still plague our world of society and being of consequential effect on the people understanding of social information, government has to contain the exorbitant school fees, incessant industrial action, lecturer government conflicts, equipping of school libraries, high cost of books and more employment and mobilization of people.
  4. There is equally the need for he government is invite private persons into broadcasting business as a way to weaken monopoly and strength competition. This will create room for alternative favourite station and people will assess between many chines and then find where to response their confidence.
  5. Further, in Nigeria and Osun state in particular there are poverty, ignorance and squalor. The greater percentage of Nigerians are living below poverty, level hence in social times, their conscience are easily bought by the candidate who is the highest bidder.

In other to ensure that the mass media achieve their aim in the mobilization of the people, there must be a sound social environment because it is only when the basic need of the people are satisfied that they can think of politics and mass messages.

Finally, politics without the people’s full participatory democracy, government should not always tell the people what they (Government) wants them to do. Rather, they should allow the people to tell it what they want to do, in this way the much desired democratic policy in Nigeria will be thing of the past.

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