By Muhamad Shazwan Abdul Hamid
Propaganda; which has been used for ages started way back during the World War 1 and continuously being used until today. Propaganda is a type of communication in which its goal is to manipulate and influence the opinion of people to support some movement, organisation, government, cause or belief and it is likely be used in artwork, films, speeches and music (White, n.d.)
Dr Zollman said that “What we refer to as modern day propaganda was actually invented at the start of the 20th century and actually, it relates more to business practices, to advertising, public relations and so on”. He added said that we need to look back throughout the history, the terminology of propaganda and how it has changed (Modern Day Propaganda, n.d.)
In today’s modern propaganda, all of it has been changed to a digital visuals such as digital posters like memes, video games and it has been spreading widely in social media, websites, and chat rooms internationally without being controlled by anyone (Hasic, 2019).
Take for example the propaganda done by the United States (U.S) in a game called “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare” where they portrayed Russia as the evil villain whom kills the people there, which is now called as Highway of Death between Kuwait and Iraq. “The Russians bombed it during the invasion, killing the people trying to escape. He’s the man responsible for creating the Highway of Death, and for using forced labor torture, summary executions and chemical weapons to punish people in the region”, (Hall, 2019). The truth is that the one who did all the invasion was none other than the Great Father which is the U.S. The game also portrayed a scene where a player who plays a role as a CIA officer shoots the enemies as well as Russian soldiers.
The game tried to portray Russia as a bad country internationally whereby all that they are good in doing is destroying and killing. The propaganda done can shift people’s view on Russia which is not good for their economy. Besides that, the games will subconsciously make other players from other countries to see Russia as a really bad country as most of the players are students. The games have been played by millions of people worldwide and it has sparked negative comments towards the Infinity Ward (the developer). Most of the Russian consumers who played the game commented that the game portrays their soldiers as a little more than faceless henchmen (Hall, 2019). Days after the release of Call of Duty : Modern Warfare, Russian consumers expressed their anger towards the game and created user reviews on Metacritic which led to a 2.5/10 score for the game.
In the modern day, people tend to look for information by using the internet medium which is the social media mainly through Twitter, Facebook and other news website such as BBC, Al Jazeera, The Washington Post and others. The problem with today’s information centre is that they are spreading the propaganda drastically and they called it as freedom of speech or freedom of expression. Instead of approving the Article 13, the government might as well create a law restricting a certain limit for the propaganda to be shared because sometimes the propaganda that is being shared contains more negative impact instead of positive impact towards a nation and also the people.
Hall, C. (2019, October 30). Call of Duty: Modern Warfare’s Highway of Death controversy, explained. Retrieved from Polygon: https://www.polygon.com/2019/10/30/20938550/call-of-duty-modern-warfare-highway-of-death-controversy
Hasic, A. (2019, March 12). Why propaganda is more dangerous in the digital age. Retrieved from The Washington Post: https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/03/12/why-propaganda-is-more-dangerous-digital-age/
Modern Day Propaganda. (n.d.). Retrieved from Renegade: https://renegadeinc.com/modern-day-propaganda/
White, D. (n.d.). What is Propaganda? – Definition, Techniques, Types & Examples. Retrieved from Study.com: https://study.com/academy/lesson/what-is-propaganda-definition-techniques-types-examples.html