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Thinking. The Heart of the Media

Jacek Dabala

In a unique, and at times highly polemical way, the author demonstrates how the media generally influences thinking and what kind of content they put into peoples’ heads. He aims to encourage a better understanding of oneself, one’s environment, and the world but above all, a better understanding of freedom, the condition of democracy - or dictatorship. This is probably the first book in the media and communication studies which, through scientific provocation, makes the readers delve deeply into their intelligence, teaches them how to use it, and allows them to decide whether they have a weak, average, or insightful mind. The book sets one of the most important trends: it tells how the media think and how they shape their audiences.

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Punishment for media naivety

The word “control” is gaining power. It lives in hiding, and that makes it particularly dangerous. Google is among those fighting it, according to The Wall Street Journal.

It turns out that open discussion in the academic style, something regarded as the norm in democracies, may take on a shocking form. Particularly when it threatens the tradition which gave birth to it. Kirsten Grind and Douglas MacMillan write about the concern of Google’s bosses over excessive freedom of speech in the company. The employees made comments introducing such things as censorship of statements by invited guests, accusations of racism, discrimination, sexism and threats of going to court. Google’s internal discussion forum turned into an uncontrolled stream of extreme views. Technological power provided an example of mixing private beliefs and work, and perhaps something more, the birth of a new restrictive awareness in communicating. The American employer opened the door to freedom so wide that it forgot the basic condition of employment – the work itself. Belief in meritocracy, including the vision of the employees being totally committed to the company, revealed the almost incomprehensible naivety of such an approach to management. Nobody asked themselves whether all these discussions not related to the employees’ tasks might not lead to unnecessary emotional involvement in interrelationships. Nobody made it clear to the employees that it they can do what they like only when not at work – write, take part in...

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