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Introduction to Mass Communication and Some Theories
The term “mass communication” is used in a variety of ways, which despite the potential for confusion, is usually clear from the context. These include:
Reference to the various activities of the mass media as a group The use of criteria of a concept, "massiveness”, to differentiate among media and their activities and The construction of questions about communication as applied to the activities of the mass media. Significantly, only the third definition does not take the actual process of communication for granted(something approved) .
Mass communication refers to the activities of the media as a whole and fails to distinguish among specific media, modes of communication, genres of text or artifact, production or reception situations, or any questions of actual communication.
Theories of Mass Communication
A theory is some form of explanation of a class of observed phenomena. Karl Popper described theory as, “the net, which we throw out in order to catch the world, to rationalize, explain and dominate it”.
The idea of a theory lies at the heart of any scholarly process, and while those in the social sciences tend to adopt the tests of a good theory from natural sciences, many who study communication adhere to an idea of theory that is akin to that found in other academic fields.
In the context of social sciences, we may find different theories which may each explain a Phenomenon in useful ways.
There is value in being able to use theories as “lenses” through which one can understand the world together with other scholars.
There are several theories Related to mass communication such as:
Agenda setting theory: Cultivation theory: Cultural imperialism theory: Diffusion of innovation theory: Media dependency theory: Media equation theory: Spiral of silence theory: Technological determinism theory: Functional approach to mass communication theory: Human action theory:
Most media scholars today believe the effects of the mass media generally are cumulative over time.
Individuals choose some mass media over others for the satisfactions they anticipate.
Individuals have substantial control over mass media effects on them.
Mass media have a significant role helping children learn society’s expectations of them.
Scholars differ on whether media-depicted violence triggers aggressive behavior.
The mass media set the agenda for what people are interested in and talk about.
The mass media can work against citizen involvement in political processes
SNS and Mass Communication
A social networking service, SNS is an online service, platform, or site that focuses on building and reflecting of social networks or social relations among people, who, for example, share interests and/or activities.
A social network service essentially consists of a representation of each user (often a profile), his/her social links, and a variety of additional services.
Most social network services are web based and provide means for users to interact over the internet, such as e-mail and instant message.
SNS and mass communication shared some particular phenomenon such as:
SNS makes it possible to connect people who share interests and activities across political, economic, and geographic borders.
SNS creates a gift economy, reciprocal relationship, altruism and encouraged through cooperation which is applicable to mass communication.
There are some of the SNSs like Facebook and twitter which are widely used worldwide through popular methods of mass communication.
Own Opinion and Suggestion
Far from being a means for the transfer of verifiable Information to a mass audience, mass communication appears to be a rhetorical presentation carrying within its message oppositional elements that serve to clarify and define each other by their very opposition.
Some criticism does get to the public, of course, but most of it is corrupted by the same forces that have turned the rest of the media into a source of manipulation.
As in the case of all relatively organized communication contexts, the language culture of mass communication may be expected to tend toward terministic closure because of the inherent nature of the symbols which have come to be habitually or conventionally utilized in the discourse as it exists from time to time.
Banerjee Debanjan, Mass communication: Trends, traits and theories, Media and Communication Studies, NSHM Institute of Media and Communication, Kolkata, India.
Jensen J (1990). Redeeming Modernity: American Media Criticism as Social Criticism, Newbury Park, California Sage.
McQuail D (1987). Mass Communication Theory: An introduction, London; Newbury Park, California, Sage.
Paul M. Shaver, the electronic communication of the journal, Indiana University South Bend Moira Burke and Cameron
Marlow and Thomas Lento; Feed Me: Motivating Newcomer Contribution in Social Network Sites, Carnegie Mellon University