Cultural and Mass Media

Culture and Mass Media

This entry is part 4 of 6 in the series Culture and Communication

Culture and Mass Media

The relationship between culture and mass media in India is very dynamic. Each has an impact on the other and is, in turn, affected by it, resulting in a distinctive ecosystem that reflects the complexity and diversity of the nation.

Be it a potent cultural force like Bollywood, opinion pieces on print and social media, talk shows and soap operas on Indian television, creative expression through art, music, or even advertisements, it is fascinating how mass media in India has retained traditional culture and simultaneously facilitated new cultural expressions to flourish.

Youth Recording Video

As India’s mass media adapts to new technologies, it plays an increasingly complex and essential role in defining, disseminating, and analyzing Indian culture. This omnipresence of mass media has significantly impacted the youth of India, who often look to media representations to form their own cultural identities.

The media-savvy younger generation negotiates its cultural identity by selecting from both global and local media offerings, creating a unique self-image that is both Indian and cosmopolitan.

Experiencing Culture Digitally

With the rise of technology and the omnipresence of mass media in our digital lives, how we experience culture is changing significantly. Are you interested in a new culture? Click or swipe an endless stream of YouTube shorts, Instagram reels, or cinematic-style documentaries on any of your favorite OTT platforms.

There are dedicated platforms like “Curiosity Stream” and “DocuBay,” with sections dedicated to exploring worldwide cultures. This fusion of technology and tradition reshapes our cultural experiences and offers innovative opportunities to engage with our cultural heritage.

The Internet has become a digital meeting place where people worldwide can share ideas, appreciate art, and explore various cultures. There are virtual tours of museums that let us walk through rooms of history as we wish. If you are interested in visiting the grandeur of the National Museum, Delhi, from the comfort of your home, you can do so by following this link.

National Museum Delhi Online Exhibit
National Museum Delhi Online Exhibit | Screenshot from

Online theatre streaming breaks geographical barriers and brings performances to a global audience.

One genuine attempt in this regard was made by Bollywood actor and theatre artist Shreyas Talpade when he launched Nine Rasa, a dedicated OTT platform for theatre and performing arts.

Nine Rasa
Nine Rasa: An OTT Platform for Theater and Performing Arts by Bollywood actor Shreyas Talpade

Nine Rasa aims to re-ignite the offline theatre experience through the digital platform. Culture and mass media are not just interacting in these digital spaces but also merging, giving us enriched, accessible cultural experiences.

Cultural Heritage Digitization

Digital technology has made it easier to preserve cultural artifacts. The digitization of ancient texts, folk songs, and demonstrations of traditional crafts in high-definition videos ensures easy access to our cultural heritage for future generations.

The digitization of folk songs and the showcasing of traditional crafts through videos is a remarkable step towards cultural preservation. These forms of cultural expression, which have been passed down through generations, often risk fading from memory as the modern world shifts towards new forms of entertainment and craftsmanship.

Indian Culture is an initiative by the Ministry of Culture, Government of India. A platform that hosts data of cultural relevance from various repositories and institutions all over India.

Culture and Mass Media
Website of Ministry of Culture | Image Credit:

However, capturing and sharing these cultural artifacts in digital formats ensures they remain a vibrant part of our collective heritage. This provides an invaluable resource for educational and research purposes and allows these traditions to reach a global audience, promoting a deeper appreciation and understanding of diverse cultures.

Online Cultural Education

Online cultural education eliminates physical barriers, making learning possible for everyone, no matter where they are. From virtual museum tours and digital archives to interactive cultural workshops and online courses, internet users can explore global cultures from home.

Online Cultural Education

In contrast to standard classroom learning, online cultural learning encourages students to be involved and participate. In-depth connections with cultural stories can be made through interactive multimedia platforms, virtual reality experiences, and social media groups.

Through group projects and talks, participants can share their experiences, add to ongoing conversations, and make real connections with other participants worldwide.

Social media, often associated with popular culture, is also crucial in spreading information about lesser-known aspects of culture.

Bridging Cultural Divides

With so many different cultures, traditions, and languages worldwide, it seems like each country is a separate cultural island. One way we learn about the cultures of other nations is through their stories and music, which certainly helps to overcome the feeling of alienation and makes us feel engaged with them.

The global popularity of Korean popular cultures, such as K-pop music and K-dramas worldwide, is a testament to this feeling. There is even a specific word called “Hallyu,” which represents the popularity of the Korean Wave.


According to the 2022 Korean Foundation report, the number of Hallyu fans exceeds 156.6 million, a huge number compared to South Korea’s population of 51.96 million! The popularity of Korean popular culture has become the most important source of South Korea’s soft power.

According to a 2021 report by Facebook Analytics, there are over 15 million consumers of Korean cultural products such as K-pop music and K-dramas in India, and the number is continuously growing.

This appreciation for other cultures is critical in India, where regional cultures differ. As one of the most culturally diverse nations in the world, we have a whole universe of cultural variety to explore within the geography of India. A special mention in this regard is the popularity of South Indian films and music across India and the world.

The CUET UG 2024 Mass Media and Communication syllabus contains this topic under the Communication section.

Series Navigation<< Culture and IdentityMedia as Vehicle of Cultural Transmission >>

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