Monday May 8th 2017 (Lecture 3)
Quiz #1 (out of 10) = 1%
Tips : If you know the summary of the chapter and can answer the questions at end of the chapter,
you should be good for the quiz.
Wednesday: Quiz #2 chapter 2,3 &4.
Wednesday topic: What is reality? What is media’s role in the construction of reality.
Ch. 1,2,3 : What is/are media? How can/do we study media?
Definition of Media:
• Noted in 1st class media is difficult to define.
• But textbook defines media as:
- The technologically developed communication industries, normally making money, that can
transmit information and entertainment across time and space to individuals and/or large
groups of people. They are literally in the middle of this process, the means for
But how can we think of media?
• How about defining by what it is?
- “the” media: those making the messages
- “the” medium: the conduit through which the messages travel
- “the” message: what is doing the travelling
- When watching an episode of Game of Thrones on HBO go on my iPhone.
• How about defining it by what it does? (This is good for Doctorow*)
- Media as Stories: (5 things)
1. Media stories provide symbols, myths and resources that constitute a common
2. Through the appropriation of these stories(symbols and myths), people become
intergraded and socialized
3. These stories demonstrate who has power (and who has not).
4. They legitimate the relationship between those who have power (and those who do
5. They do this by demonstrating what happens to those who obey (and those who do
- Media as Spectacle: media messages are never simple & never exist in a vacuum.
• The bigger the spectacle, the less unpacking.
• Media make whole groups of people disappear from the political process, and the
way the do it is the same way a magician does it (spectacle). They all take place
within social, political context, they are bias and are never neutral. They are there for
profit but all of that is lost in the shininess of the object.
- Media as Pedagogy: media teaches us who benefits & who does not.
• Media is cultural pedagogy, it’s teaching you as culture. How? go back to media as
stories. We are story-telling creatures, we live and learn through stories, so media whether on purpose or not, it teaches us about cultural norms and which ones we’re
suppose to privilege. It teaches how to dress, consume, fit in, be successful, how to
be a woman/man, what to dream to be, etc. and at the same it teaches us whether on
purpose or not, what happens to those who disobey.
• How about defining it by how it came to be?
- No on thing produces or determines the media but:
- Textbook gives us 5 factors “That are crucial in determining how the media develop”(p.6)
1. Technological developments: the production of new media forms;
2. Economics: the need and desire to make money/profit;
3. Human creativity: the work of all those producing media content and media technologies;
4. Social controls: those implemented by people in positions of power, especially
governments that attempt to control what appears in the media;
5. Audiences: through their consumption of media, they ensure their success or failure.
How about defining it by what is says explicitly & implicitly?
- Content analysis and semiotics.
And who/what is privileges/benefits?
Sherry Rowley questions on your syllabus.
- •Who defines what the culture understands to be “reality”? Whose “reality” is being
•Who/what is absent/disappeared, marginalized or set in opposition? To whom is this
- •What are the core assumptions? Who benefits from this telling? What are the benefits?
At what/whose expense?
•How/Could this story be told otherwise? How do the absent/disappeared/marginalized
- •How does this relate to my own experiences?
•How/does this move me to change my thinking/acting/world?
And how is this structurally supported?
- Media who’s question on your syllabus.
- •Who makes the stories?
- •Who legitimizes them?
- •Who distributes them?
•For whom are they produced?
- •Who gets represented in these stories as ‘normal’? Who gets represented as “other”?
and who is altogether left out of representation?
•Who consumes these stories as fact? Who consumes these stories for pleasure? Who
consumes these stories critically?
And how it gets taken up by consumers, audiences, other?
- Audience research, effects research. So to study media requires?
1. a “rights based” approach (diagram)
Historically, we have always had two competing discourse of media and technology.
• Both are probably truth just a little bit, but there are not true in it’s entirety. Usually competing
• A “rights based” look at the individual experience, look at the larger picture in place, the role of
the governments, cultural group, social groups, individuals place in this.
• Media will tell you stories in the extreme, in spectacle.
• Ask questions such as what are the rights of the people involved.
Media messages as empowering Media messages are brainwashing
Technology as saviour Technology as enslaver
Media are for the people Media are for profit
Media as “good” Media as “bad”
Grounded in rhetoric of idealism (utopia) Grounded in rhetoric of moral panic (dystopia)
2. a 3 pronged approach
• Through this approach, it allows us to follow media, we can watch and explore. What it’s
suppose to be, how it looks and then we can take it off.
Through the process of consuming, the audience it self give back meaning to that text, and if
you have a full feedback loop, what is encoded can then be decoded.
political economy textual analysis audience reception
production content consumption
encoding code decoding
decoding? code encoding?
Monday May 8th 2017 (Tutorial 3)
3 pronged approach: full feedback loop
Reality is mediated one way or another.
• This relates to the feedback loop because it is constantly encoded and as it goes a long it gets
decoded and goes full circle.
• This (feedback loop) is all taking place, the content is not free from influence of political
economy, production access.
• At each end, “encoding” can’t be sure of the way that the “code” will be “decoded”. The difference between media and “the” media:
• media would be the term,
• “The” media would be the people, the system trying to control. It is not as big as media because
we’re talking about the producers, the writers, etc.
• Even though the media, the medium, the message are all distinct from one another, they are still
• For media as stories, when we talk about discourse (not in the context of discussion) we talk
about race, gender, etc.
• Andovertimethesestories, there’s adominant definition ofwhat itis meantto beawomen/men,
• We are born into these stories, and how much of theses stories apply to you depends on where
you were born.
The circle of culture in action:
• In the first circle we have Hegemony(it has to do with power but there is a power struggle.) That
circle has been predominately filled with white men.
• The further you get from the main circle, the more deviant you are from the norm, the least
consensus there is out there.
Media & Society - Ch. 2,3 & 4 Notes
• Media Studies:
analyses theroleofthemediainsocietyandstudies mediatechnologies,media institutions,
and the production, consumption, circulation, and content of media texts.
• People who share cultural activities such as dress, leisure activities, and social beliefs, that
are resistant or opposed to mainstream culture; used mainly in relation to youth cultures.
• a combination of the terms “slacker” and “activism”. Slacktivism (also know as “hashtag
activism”) refers to the use of the internet to support a social or political cause in a
superficial way that requires little effort or risk, su