Audience Theories
How...? What...? When...? Where...?
Which…? Who...? Why...?
Audience Theories
Why are they important…?
- An audience theory is the starting point for many
media studies tasks, whethe...
Audience Theories
Introduction…
- In covering this topic we need to be aware of a
broad shift from a perception of mass au...
Audience Theories
Background information…
- Over the course of the past century or so, media
analysts have developed sever...
Audience Theories
Background information…
- Research into media audiences was dominated by the debate
about 'media effects...
Audience Theories
The task…
- Each group will be allocated a theory.
- You will need to create a presentation
on this theo...
Audience Theories
The theories…
* Hypodermic Needle theory
* Uses and Gratifications theory
* Encoding / Decoding theory
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Audience Theories Presentation

  1. 1. Audience Theories How...? What...? When...? Where...? Which…? Who...? Why...?
  2. 2. Audience Theories Why are they important…? - An audience theory is the starting point for many media studies tasks, whether a text is being constructed or analysed. - A media studies practitioner must always consider the destination of a text. In other words, the text’s target audience, and how certain audiences will read it and respond to it. - It is transferable across a wide range of media texts and formats, such as film, newspapers, radio, television, video games, etc.
  3. 3. Audience Theories Introduction… - In covering this topic we need to be aware of a broad shift from a perception of mass audience to one that recognises that, whatever the size of audience, it is made up of individuals. - Along with this altered view is a shift in emphasis from what the media do to the audience, to an acceptance that audiences bring many different approaches to the media with which they engage.
  4. 4. Audience Theories Background information… - Over the course of the past century or so, media analysts have developed several effects models. - These are theoretical explanations of how humans ingest information transmitted by media texts and how this might influence their behaviour. - Effects theories are still a hotly debated area of media and psychology research, as no one is able to come up with indisputable evidence that audiences will always react to media texts one way or another.
  5. 5. Audience Theories Background information… - Research into media audiences was dominated by the debate about 'media effects‘. In particular, the link between on-screen violence and real-life aggression. - Several moral panics fuelled these claims, such as… * Rambo had influenced Michael Ryan to commit the Hungerford massacre (USA, 1987) FILM * Child's Play 3 had motivated the killers of toddler James Bulger (UK, 1993) FILM * Doom had driven Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold to commit the Columbine massacre (USA, 1999) VIDEO GAME * WWE is linked to teenage male aggression (global, 1990s– present) TV
  6. 6. Audience Theories The task… - Each group will be allocated a theory. - You will need to create a presentation on this theory, which will then be presented to the rest of the class in the subsequent lesson. - In your presentation, you will need to explain the theory, give examples of the theory (linking it to a media industry and texts) and evaluate the theory.
  7. 7. Audience Theories The theories… * Hypodermic Needle theory * Uses and Gratifications theory * Encoding / Decoding theory

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