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Lecture 7

Thorough Notes on Lecture 7

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Department
Sociology
Course Code
SOCC44H3
Professor
Ivanka Knezevic

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SOCC44H3Media and SocietyFri, March 11/2011
Lecture 07
Reception and effects of mass media: Audience interpretation/Latent (unintended media effects)
Perspectives on mass media reception
The hypodermic needle(“magic bullet) perspective
A circumsized message which enters you consciousness directly, like a hypodermic needle
Dominant in the first half of the 20th century
Mass media are so powerful they caninject their message: messages are received directly,
completely, and with minimal interpretation: received meaning is as sender intended
Communication model?
Mass media sends the message, we receive it directly and interpret it as the sender intended
us to
So, this is The Transmission model
...continued
The Two Step Flow of Communication perspective
Paul Lazarsfeld and Elihu Katz, 1944
If you ever go into any kind of advanced social science statistics class, remember that you're
doing what Lazarsfeld came up with
Responses to mass media are mediated by social relationships
Mediated by their network of family members, friends, colleagues, etc
People take in media messages, then turn to opinion leaders (someone to whom people turn to
for important decisions because he/she is referred to as smarter) before deciding how to
interpret and respond those messages
They're most likely to follow the opinion of the opinion leader as to how to respond to the
mass media message they're receiving. To accept them/to not accept them.
Another finding: People do not respond to all messages they receive
if you bombard people with a huge number of messages, they simply don't pay attention to
all of them
Opinion leader will tell people which message to listen to
Five Factors influencing media persuasiveness
Once they found Hypodermic model was not true, they started doing research as to how to make
mass media messages more persuasive. What they found:
1. media source is trusted, prestigious, or liked
more expert sources, more prestige
Although we try to make rational decisions, sometimes even the prestigious names can have
forced news stories
2. A media monopoly
www.notesolution.com
if you only have access to one source of news, it will be persuasive...because you don't have
access to alternate news sources
3. Audience attention is casual
if you are watching the news with concentration, you're more likely to be critical on the content
you're receiving...therefore, you're less likely to find the message persuasive
if you're skimming the news, you're more likely to accept it
4. Issue is removed from receiver's experience or concern
People are much more likely to accept the messages about foreign politics than messages about
local politics
it's an issue of availability. How many of us have access to mass media as to what's
happening in say...Sudan?
The more geographically remote the issue is, the more likely we are to accept it
5. Personal contacts are not opposed to message
If friends/family/close contacts are opposed to a message, you'll be exposed to their opinions
and may be swayed
Consumer choice and use of media content
“Uses and gratificationsperspectives
what kind of use do you put the mass media content to and how do you gratify yourself with
it.
People take the message and use it to fulfill a need.
Ex: people watch entertainment news as a means to escape their current situations
that's their use for that type of news
Communication model?
Reception model: pays attention to what audience is actively doing with mass media
messages
1st question of this perspective: How do people choose what mass media (news, books, movies,
Cds, etc) to consume?
Two ways we decide: Recommendations from others or existing knowledge of authors,
directors, etc.
More choices allow greater specialization (“niche markets).
It's become cheaper to produce mass media content.
Nowadays TV channels, networks, are highly specialized
We have specialized news channels (CNN, FOX) which we didn't have 30 years ago
Comedy channel – focuses only on comedy
Much Music – focuses on music
Food network – food focus
All of these have narrow niche markets
2nd question of this perspective: What are the uses of media content? Remember the models of
communication
Information is the use. We are using mass media content to be informed.
www.notesolution.com

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Description
SOCC44H3 Media and Society Fri, March 112011 Lecture 07 Reception and effects of mass media: Audience interpretationLatent (unintended media effects) Perspectives on mass media reception The hypodermic needle (magic bullet) perspective A circumsized message which enters you consciousness directly, like a hypodermic needle Dominant in the first half of the 20 century Mass media are so powerful they can inject their message: messages are received directly, completely, and with minimal interpretation: received meaning is as sender intended Communication model? Mass media sends the message, we receive it directly and interpret it as the sender intended us to So, this is The Transmission model ...continued The Two Step Flow of Communication perspective Paul Lazarsfeld and Elihu Katz, 1944 If you ever go into any kind of advanced social science statistics class, remember that youre doing what Lazarsfeld came up with Responses to mass media are mediated by social relationships Mediated by their network of family members, friends, colleagues, etc People take in media messages, then turn to opinion leaders (someone to whom people turn to for important decisions because heshe is referred to as smarter) before deciding how to interpret and respond those messages Theyre most likely to follow the opinion of the opinion leader as to how to respond to the mass media message theyre receiving. To accept themto not accept them. Another finding: People do not respond to all messages they receive if you bombard people with a huge number of messages, they simply dont pay attention to all of them Opinion leader will tell people which message to listen to Five Factors influencing media persuasiveness Once they found Hypodermic model was not true, they started doing research as to how to make mass media messages more persuasive. What they found: 1. media source is trusted, prestigious, or liked more expert sources, more prestige Although we try to make rational decisions, sometimes even the prestigious names can have forced news stories 2. A media monopoly www.notesolution.com
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