Mass Communication and Mass Media Definitions

In Mass Communication on October 5, 2009 at 7:12 pm

Based on our class discussion, these are the definitions that I devised:

Mass Communication: the transmission of messages or information from the senders to the receivers (a broad audience) through the use of mass media.

Mass Media: Channels which are used by senders to communicate their messages to the audience.

For example, the Mac vs. PC television commercials (the medium) express that Macs are way cooler than PC’s (the message).

To further demonstrate these two concepts, I came up with this story:

Tyler was seven years old. One day, he saw his father working on the computer, different images kept popping up on the monitor. Tyler was fascinated and began to dream about having his own computer. He decided to write Santa to tell him that he has been a good boy all year long and he’d like a computer this Christmas. He wrote and rewrote and rewrote, until he was satisfied and mailed it off to North Pole. And then he thought, “what if my letter wasn’t convincing enough and Santa didn’t believe me?” He needed to assemble himself a group of lobbyists… Mom, Dad, Uncle Craig and Aunt Janne, cousin Dory and little Katie next door… the list goes on. One by one, Tyler wrote everyone he knew to ask them to write Santa, telling him what a good boy Tyler has been and that he should be rewarded with a computer this Christmas.

It’s Christmas morning, the long wait was finally over. Tyler jumped out of bed and immediately ran to the Christmas tree. There, he found a huge box with his name on the gift tag. He couldn’t wait and ripped the package open, and, viola!, a brand new computer. “It worked!” Tyler exclaimed! But wait, there’s another box that says, “Tyler” on it. What could it be? He opened it, and it was a book titled “Mass Communication.” He didn’t understand what that meant but the curious mind was determined to find out.

With the assistance of his parents, Tyler learned to use the computer, learned to use it as a resource to help him understand what this book was all about. With his continuous effort, he finally began to comprehend the message… that was his first experience of mass communication.

In this story, Tyler was the sender. He used letters as a mass medium to communicate to all the people he knew about his Christmas wish. When the receivers received the message, Tyler’s wish was granted. Besides the message that Tyler intended to communicate, another message was also conveyed to the audience — this boy has a business mind! Tyler’s parents received the message and communicated back the knowledge in the form of a book.


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