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propaganda: Persuasive mass communication that filters and frames the issues of the day in a way that strongly favours particular interests; usually those of a government or corporation (compare agenda setting). Also, the intentional manipulation of public opinion through lies, half-truths, and the selective re-telling of history (Chandler, D., & Munday, R.(2011). propaganda. In A Dictionary of Media and Communication. : Oxford University Press. Retrieved 8 Sep. 2013, from http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/acref/9780199568758.001.0001/acref-9780199568758-e-2171.)
public opinion: Views about issues or events of social concern that are expressed openly at a particular time by a significant percentage of the population, as distinct from the private opinions of individuals or those expressed within small circles. Since the advent of ‘opinion polls’, the term is widely taken to refer to the results of surveys. In theories of political liberalism, public opinion is seen as involving free debate leading to the possibility of a rational consensus(see also public and private spheres). Critics argue that it can be manipulated by governments and powerful institutions (see also dominance model; dominant ideology; manipulative model; manufacture of consent; media hegemony). The mass media play a key role in the dissemination (and filtering) of views and many argue that they are central in generating a consensus (see also agenda setting; gatekeepers; imagined community; news values; spiral of silence). However, this tends to homogenize media content (see pluralist model) and underestimate the active interpretive role of audiences (see active audience theory; encoding/decoding model; receiver selectivity; see also J-curve; two-step flow). Despite popular usage, public opinion does not reflect a general consensus. In democratic societies there are multiple opinions and publics. On any controversial issue, public opinion is divided between several alternative and inconsistent viewpoints. (Chandler, D., & Munday, R.(2011). public opinion. In A Dictionary of Media and Communication. : Oxford University Press. Retrieved 8 Sep. 2013, from http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/acref/9780199568758.001.0001/acref-9780199568758-e-2202.)