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World Trade Organization



The first day of demonstrations by tens of thousands of people against the meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Seattle occurred on November 30, 1999. According to Lee Sustar, that was the protest that shattered the myth of working-class contentment and individualistic youth in the United States. The protests gave a boost to an emerging global justice movement (Sustar). The author further claims that those events provided a focus for a revived international left in opposition to the free-market fundamentalist brand of capitalism known as neoliberalism. The media portrayal of satisfied and self-interested workers was interrupted by the UPS strike of 1997. ‘Tens of millions of workers, whose real (after inflation) wages had been stagnant since the early 1970s, identified with the victorious strike’ (http://socialistworker.org/2009/11/30/seattle-and-global-justice).

The purpose of this assignment is to discuss the reformulation of news frames in response to public opinion surrounding the United Parcel Service strike and the World Trade Organization protests in the late 1990s. News media employ five dominant frames when they cover stories and events. These are: consumer is king, the process of production is none of the public’s business, economy is driven by great business leaders and entrepreneurs, and collective action is bad. The story under investigation reflects true issues of community. It is quite evident that media take into account public opinion.

News media usually portray their stories on behalf of certain groups or individuals. That makes it consumer-oriented. However, such striking and protesting events have forced the news media to reformulate their news frames.

News media should serve people. In addition, they ought to deliver accurate complete pieces of information; moreover, they should not only help their audience understand the issues at hand, but assist protesters in solving their problems either. It is a huge risk for a person or for a group of people to gather and decide to go on strike as this bears many consequences. They may fail at achieving their goals and lose everything. Thus, it is vitally important how exactly news media portray events and present information. Reformulation of news frames is a necessary step that will help news media to become more objective and force millions of people to trust and rely on them. Reformulation let people understand that they are the true consumer. The news media consider all facts and present information for the sake of humanity.

People usually go on public strikes because they fight for their rights and they do not want to be oppressed. They tend to rely on the support of news media as they are a very powerful tool. News media must be able to set priorities in order to serve their main purpose – helping common people. The story event research demonstrates reformulation in full. News media portrayed it objectively and without prejudice. 

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