Media essay | The rise of neo-liberalism and its impact upon media industries


Argument and Critical Thinking
 It is not enough to state that there is a debate about an issue or that a definition is difficult –
you still need to clarify your own position; it is not enough to just list various statements from
the literature to illustrate a debate, you need to comment on these different positions, relate
them to each other and reach a conclusion: what is the position/definition/approach you use in
your essay?
 Provide evidence for claims about the large economic, social, cultural role the media play – it is
not enough to state the fact
 Avoid boring opening clichés without evidence (e.g. media are becoming more central in our
lives) – you opening should have a link to the topic!
 Conclusions are often too brief and only descriptive. A conclusion is not just a summary, it
needs to evaluate not just repeat what you have addressed. You need to bring your claims
together and make clear statement in relation to the essay question based on your discussion
Using literature and examples
 Don’t use literature to substitute your own voice (i.e. stringing several quotes together without
your own comment) but use it to substantiate your claims.
 Avoid overuse of a single source i.e. reading – and related to this issue: don’t just copy
someone else’s argument (though you can use it to support your own)
 Similarly: don’t use literature too extensively but keep in balance with your own voice e.g. avoid
too long descriptive examples, avoid long quotes without explanation of how this contributes to
your argument
 Don’t just describe what authors say, but comment/evaluate what is said in context of essay
 Juxtapositioning opposing views is a good thing to do. It makes your argument more interesting
and shows that you are aware of the different sides of a debate. But you need to reference the
different sides and (again) you need to engage with the opposing claims and make your own
position in relation to the debate clear (this relates to the point about debates above)
 Avoid phrases like ‘Many scholars have argued…’ without providing names of the scholars to
back up your claim (you can use phrases like “such as …” or “for example, …” to introduce the
sources). It feels vague and rushed – almost like suggesting that you have read more than you
Referencing Issues
In-text citations:
 If you have not accessed the original source, always use “cited-in” format in citations. Do not
just copy claims/quotes and authors and add them to your bibliography (I have noticed this
with a few sources from Hesmondhalgh (2013) but also from other sources including
Wikipedia). There is a risk that you might misunderstand the original source or copy errors. It is
fairly obvious if sources have been used in this way and bad practice with regard to the author
who actually accessed the sources and found the claims/quotes you are using.

COMM5710 Media Industries 2015/16
 Titles of films/books/songs etc. in your essay body should be in italics. If you discuss such media
texts in further detail (i.e. beyond just naming them as brief examples) you can add them to
your bibliography.
 List citations AFTER a direct quote not before.
 If you mention a source in your sentence (e.g. according to Wikipedia/The Numbers/author
name) you still need to cite the publication year and page numbers (if applicable).
 Check authors’ gender if you want to say “he” or “she” in your text.
 Double check what authors’ first and last names are. Your citations and references should list
the last name.
 Always check if there is more than one author (e.g. Grant and Wood 2004)
 Try to avoid citing lecture slides ( they are an internal and not public source, i.e. not accessible
for other readers and they usually condense claims from other sources), rather use lecture
statements as a starting point for your own research, look for similar statements in literature,
 If you are using a book chapter from a book by a single author (i.e. a monograph), reference the
book in the bibliography, and not the chapter. If you are using a chapter from an edited book,
reference the book chapter with full page numbers in your bibliography
 Don’t copy-paste references – this leads to inconsistencies and errors in your referencing
 Ensure it is clear what your web sources are – i.e. provide more info on whether this is a blog,
newspaper or magazine article or something else.
 Aim for consistency in bibliography: e.g. Sage or Sage Publications – stick with one, stick with
one format for volume and issue number for journal articles
Language and Writing Issues
 Link the different segments of your essay. How are your arguments related, how can you lead
from one to the next? All your paragraphs should contribute to answering the essay question.
 Typical language errors: to use verbs or adjectives as nouns, a lack of articles (the), incomplete
sentences (e.g. verb missing).
 Be precise and careful in your expressions. For example, there is a difference in meaning
whether you use the term industry in singular or plural (i.e. media/cultural industry or
 Include student ID, word count, essay question and page numbers – do not include your name
Learn from other academic texts
 How to structure an argument
o especially how to link separate sections to each other to develop an argumentative
o but also how to integrate literature in your argument – how much to explain, how to

 What kind of vocabulary to use
 Correct grammar and sentence structure


In the last three decades of the last century, the political, economic and social aspects in the world went some tremendous changes. Various countries witnessed a change from state-centric to neoliberal frameworks on how certain aspects were being carried out. After the World War II majority of world’s economies were being governed using state centered policies where the state or the government controlled almost all aspects of the country. However, some developed countries like the United States, United Kingdom and countries in Western Europe and Japan had regulations steered towards the Keynesian welfare states.  At around 1970s state centered regimes experienced some crises, the communism started to crumble and some reforms were being introduced, capitalism was being watered down through dismantling of capital controls and privatization of public companies.  Majority of states in the world started to deregulate their markets to attract more investors (Giroux 2004). The developing countries in Africa, Asia and South America opened their borders thereby abandoning their nationalist development strategies to attract global capital majorly from World Bank and international monetary fund. The idea of changing the various economic, political and social aspects in the world was to promote integration of world market where global rules applied to different countries in the world. This new regulatory framework in the world came to be known as neo-liberalism. As is the case in classical economic liberalism, this new idea was majorly premised on market relations within states and between world’s states. Transformation on how the states influenced the business and private sectors of the economy as well as changing the political and social ideologies of the state was at the centre of neo-liberalism.