The role of the press has changed dramatically since the nineteenth century. Possibly the most noticeable change was the number of people it was able to reach with the occurrence of the printing press. Although it was an expensive item, more copies of the print could be distributed, thus increasing the sale and therefore the income of the media organisation.
The role of advertising shifted the media to an economic determinism, as the power of mass advertising was noticed after the abolition of advertising duty in 1853. This gave way for more ‘glamorous’ adverts to be used with no tax to be paid, therefore cheaper for the advertisers but better for the publications as more business was coming their way.
The dependency on advertising soon emerged, as £20 million was the revenue of advertising in 1907: a huge figure. The power of advertising was also able to put publications out of business, such as left wing print which was boycotted by advertising for obvious reasons.
Politicians also noticed the formation of the mass of the population that the media was now reaching. As parties wanted to gain votes from society, getting their voice heard in the media seemed like an ideal format to use.
A mass society was from here on established, with mass media, mass advertising and mass politics reaching most of the populus. It could be said that this furthered the consumer state we now live in: competition for the best “stuff” forces people to go out and buy more.
In modern society, Journalism has now swayed more to lifestyle writing. This may have come about with the nature of employment allowing for more leisure time, thus appealing to people with hobbies, sports interests and other lifestyle choices. It allows readers to feel their identity is being targeted and explored, as well as allowing them to search for how their image within their lifestyle choice should be.