Mass media

Means of communication are such as print, radio, TV. The mass media are defined as large-scale organizations which use one or more of these technologies to communicate with large numbers of people (‘mass communications’). The mass media has two important sociological characteristics: first, very few people can communicate to a great number; and, second, the audience has no effective way of answering back. Mass communication is by definition a one-way process. Media organizations are bureaucratic and corporate in nature. Media outputs are regulated by government everywhere but restrictions vary from very light advisory regulations (for example no cigarette or nudity on TV) to the most comprehensive forms of censorship in totalitarian societies. Mass media dominate the mental life of modern societies and therefore are of intense interest to sociologists. From the earliest studies in the 1930s the main concern was with the power implicit in new media technologies especially radio and television. TV and radio can be used for propaganda and other dangerous things. Early studies of Lasswell and others seemed to show that media effects were indeed direct and powerful model of influence. But later and intensive research showed that mass media effect on audience depend on such factors as class, social context, values, beliefs, emotional state and even time of the day. Some researchers say that new electronic and visual media can destroy the concept of the traditional education and literature. But now it is proven that the understanding of a text differs when a person reads in written on a sheet of paper and in electronic form. Texts written in electronic form are realized 40% worse. And that is the main reason why electronic media with nice visual graphs and pictures won’t destroy written word. Mass media is closely connected with communication in all forms. The students of mass media study the discipline of communication.