The book entitled “McQuail’s Mass Communication Theory” is an apt account of media, society and culture. McQuail provides an introduction of the evolution of media and society to date. Comprising of 20 chapters, the book has been categorized into eight parts i.e. This chapter examines three distinct aspects of the agenda-setting influence of the news media on the public as well as the psychological principles that explain when this influence is strong and when it is weak. Two aspects of the influence of the media on the public sphere date. Medical McQuail's Mass. Communication. Theory. 6th edition. Denis McQuail Despite the .

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McQuail's Mass Communication Theory Dedicated to the future media audiences , especially: Laurence, Alexander, William, Noah, Chaia, Alice, Miranda. The Handbook of Media and Mass Communication Theory presents a comprehensive collection of original essays that focus on all aspects of. "e;Denis McQuail's Mass Communication Theory is not just a seminal text in the study of media and society - it is a benchmark for understanding and.

Unique for the current and comprehensive range of perspectives it offers, this set is a must read for those interested in having a broad understanding of the evolution and current state of theories in mass communication. Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty.

While the focus is very much on its application in the media sphere, scholars in allied cultural and sociological disciplines will also find much they can adopt and adapt within their own work as well; broadening the appeal and readership likewise … Given that there is much within this work that will be of repeated use to students and faculty, download of this work by any academic library supporting these disciplines is one that should be strongly considered.

Robert S. He is the author or editor of seven books and almost essays. He has written extensively on topics relating to communication and journalism ethics. Please check your email for instructions on resetting your password. If you do not receive an email within 10 minutes, your email address may not be registered, and you may need to create a new Wiley Online Library account.

If the address matches an existing account you will receive an email with instructions to retrieve your username. Skip to Main Content. Fortner P. The meaning of globalization and the consequences of this development are discussed in this chapter.

Origins Why are the mass media object and agent of the globalising process? Technology and money Explain the role of dierent technologies in the globalisation of media content. The brakes in the globalization process have been cultural according to McQuail. Explain the economic drives behind globalisation.

Multinational ownership Why are one-o media more often subject to international ownership than cash-flow media? Are there also exceptions to that rule? Varieties of global mass media What sorts of global mass communication can be distinguished?

Give examples of these forms.

Reading McQuail’s Mass Communication Theory

International media dependency Has the expansion of old and the rise of new media helped to reduce media dependency?

Cultural imperialism After the Second World War there was a very ethnocentric way of looking at international communication according to McQuail. What does he mean by that? What is the dierence between the old international propaganda and the new media imperialism? And what are the alternative views on cultural imperialism?

What is the dierence between the dependency and the free-flow paradigms?

Transnationalization Give examples of national, bilateral and multilateral flows of television content and possible eects.

International news What is meant by the bias in international news, why is it there, and is the critique on this bias justified? Global trade in media culture Although nationally produced TV-content is the most popular in almost every country, foreign mostly American material is the most visible.

Explain why MTV Europe is mentioned as an example of the limitations of globalization. National and cultural identity According to McQuail national identity is more questionable than cultural identity and the notion of European identity is even more suspect. Chapter 11 focuses on the organization and the relations with other organizations as well as internal relations.

Chapter 12 is devoted to the content production of the media. Chapter The media organization: pressures and demands The influences on the media and the demands from society, pressure and interest groups, and the audience, as well as internal pressures, are discussed in this chapter. Research methods and perspectives Define the key terms structure, conduct and performance.

What is participant observation? The main issues Explain the two main issues McQuail mentions with empirical examples. There are five hypotheses about factors influencing content Box What hypotheses will be covered in this chapter and why?

The media organization in a eld of social forces Explain the dierences between Figures Dierent work cultures in a media organization may lead to tensions according to McQuail. Explain this in practical terms. Relations with society What is meant by the ambiguity of goals of media organizations? Relations with owners and clients Why is there only a limited autonomy when it comes to the role of the proprietor? When the influence of advertisers is concerned, McQuail mentions that there is apart from incidental eorts to influence media content also a normal 16 A classroom companion influence.

Relations with the audience Explain the problematic relation between journalists and their audience and try to come up with practical examples of this problematic relation. Aspects of internal structure and dynamics Internal tensions may arise from the fact that media are hybrid organizations. Explain this with examples from dierent sorts of media.

The inuence of personal characteristics of mass communicators That personal characteristics are important in the production of media content is part of what McQuail calls the mythology of the media themselves. Explain this. Chapter The production of media culture What is happening in a media-organization and how is cultural content produced?

Gatekeeping and selection Explain gatekeeping and the weaknesses of the concept in practical terms. What is the dierence between the classic gatekeeping concept and the organizational and ideological approaches?

Inuences on news selection Explain the dierence between the idea of news as a naturally occurring product and the creation of news approach. Why are people, location and time important in the news selection process? Explain the importance of routine news Molotch and Lester. The struggle over access between media and society McQuail writes that access is bound to be a site of struggle; what does that mean? Why is reality television a misleading title?

The inuence of sources on news How important are sources in the process of news selection and processing? How and why is news planned? What is a pseudo event and can you find examples of such events? Explain what is meant by assimilation in the relation between journalists and sources. What is bias and how can it be the result of internal processing?

Also the main sorts of content are discussed. Chapter 13 focuses on the question of how content is studied in communication science. In Chapter 14 media genres and media texts categories of content are discussed.

Reading McQuail’s Mass Communication Theory

Chapter Media content: issues, concepts and methods of analysis What are the main reasons for studying media content and what are the most important traditions in content analysis? Why study media content? Why is it important to distinguish message from meaning?

McQuail lists nine dierent motives that have guided the study of content.

McQuail's Mass Communication Theory (6th ed.)

Give practical examples of these dierent motives and of the sort of content that would be studied in each case. Critical perspectives on content Explain the dierent schools of criticism when media content is concerned. Structuralism and semiology What is meant by the concepts sign, signifier and signified and how do these relate to meaning? Explain the dierence between connotation and denotation with a practical example.

Visual images are, according to McQuail, polysemic but have sometimes greater denotative power than spoken words. Media content as information Why is this approach linked to the transmission model according to McQuail?

How can information be measured in practical terms? Media performance discourse Explain why this approach is linked to normative theory and what kinds of norms are studied in this respect. Why can the realityreflection norm be criticized?

Questions of research method Explain why meaning can be found in three dierent locations. Traditional content analysis Explain what is meant by the two main assumptions of traditional content analysis and why these assumptions are often criticized.

Quantitative and qualitative analysis compared What are the main dierences between quantitative and qualitative methods? Chapter Media genres and texts The concept genre is used to distinguish between dierent sorts of media texts. The news-genre, violence and the relation between text and meaning are discussed in detail.

Questions of genre Explain the characteristics of genres with practical examples. What is meant by media logic and media format? The news genre What does Lippmann mean by the statement news is not a mirror? Try to give some examples of the stretching of a genre. The structure of news: bias and framing What is meant by framing? News as narrative What is meant by news as narrative; how does the concept of storytelling fit in this concept and why is it dierent from factual reporting?

Television violence Explain how the dierent contextual factors of violence in the media can contribute to the alleged harmful eects. Explain this and explain also why this approach text and meaning is dierent from the approach in the part on television violence. Give some examples of closed and open texts. What is a gendered text?

Chapter 15 focuses on the question What is the audience? In Chapter 16 the formation and the behaviour of the public is discussed. Chapter Audience theory and research traditions One of the problems of the audience is that it often is invisible.

The main topic of the chapter is to define what an audience actually is and how audience research can be conducted. The audience concept How can the concept audience be defined or characterized? From mass to market What are the main characteristics of the audience as a mass-market? Explain this in terms of dierent media. Critical perspectives What is the main discussion in the part critical perspectives?

Goals of audience research Give examples of the dierent goals of audience research. Alternative traditions of research Describe the three dierent research traditions. Types of audience McQuail states that there are four main audience types. Explain these types with recent examples.

Activity and selectivity Explain ritualized and instrumental media use in practical terms. The why of media use Explain how the three dierent research schools approach pp.

Although a good deal is known about audience formation, other developments are still a mystery according to McQuail p. Explain the three variables that influence media use with examples of your own media use p. The uses and gratications approach Explain the basic assumptions and the media-person interactions of the Uses and Gratifications approach. What are the weaknesses of this approach?

How does the distinction between expectation and satisfaction explain changes in media use behaviour? An integrated model of audience choice What two sorts of factors play a role in media use?

Give examples for each of these factors. Why is this integrated model behavioural and the media orientation model structural? Public and private spheres of media use What can be meant by the term public in media use? Subculture and audience Life-style Why is the life-style approach dierent from the idea that media use is related to social class?

Why is the relation between subculture and media so important? Gendered audiences What is the essence of the gendered audience according to McQuail? Give some practical examples with dierent genders.

Sociability and uses of the media Why can it be satisfying to see a bad movie? Explain why media use can be seen as social isolation but also as a social event. Explain why media use can be associated with feelings of duty and guilt as well. The view from the audience What is meant by affective direction and para-social interaction? Media fandom What is the dierence between attachment, identification, capture and fandom?

The end of the audience? How do terms like segmentation and fragmentation relate to the end of the audience? What are the four stages of fragmentation? The escape of the audience What are the possible consequences of the overabundance or overload of media supply? The future of the audience Why is a fundamental change of the audience as predicted by some perhaps not really possible? Chapter 17 is devoted to the history of thinking about media eects and to the question of what sort of eects we can expect.

In Chapter 18 social cultural eects, mostly unintended, are discussed. In Chapter 19 the focus is on news genre with its possible consequences for public opinion. Chapter Processes and models of media effects How much power do the media have? There have been dierent answers to this question in the history of communication science. And eects can also be categorized in dierent ways. The premise of media effect Explain the eect-paradox that McQuail is talking about.

The main task of the press is to promote the socialist system and maintain the sovereignty of the proletariat working class via communist party. While the soviet- communist theory seeks to use the media to support development and change towards the attainment of the communist stage, the authoritarian seeks to use the media to maintain the status quo.

But they are similar in subjecting the media to direct state control. Every issue in Soviet communist must be seen and interpreted in favour of the communist party. The four working principles of soviet press are 1 Truthfulness. Libertarian and Social Responsibility theories assign economic function to the press while the Soviet press removes the profit motive since it is an arm of government and financed by government. Social Responsibility Media Theory Social Responsibility Theory emerged as a result of conflict between professionalism and self-regulation of the press and pressure for greater regulation of the media.

The Hutchins Commission on Freedom of the press was established in and released its report in The Commission members were sharply divided between those who held strongly libertarian views and those who supported some form of press regulation.

Hitler used the media against the Jew. On the other hand, placing the media under a control or regulation will hinder the freedom of the press. The Commission therefore decided to place their faith in media practitioners and called on them to redoubled their efforts to serve the public and that the media have certain obligations to society. These obligations were expressed in the words "informativeness, truth, accuracy, objectivity, and balance". This theory states that the media can be used by anyone who has an idea to express but they are forbidden to invade private rights or disrupt social structures.

It emphasizes the freedom of the press and places responsibility on the media practitioners to abide by certain social standards. It opposes media regulation but believes that the press is automatically controlled by community opinion, consumer protest and professional ethics.

It also points out that the media, in carrying out their obligations, must adhere to the highest ethical standards. Social Responsibility Theory basic principles, summarised by McQuail , include: consideration of public affairs generally accessible. The media are to be used to stimulate and empower pluralistic groups.

In other words, the existing bureaucracy, commercialisation and professional hegemony in media system should be broken down to allow or guarantee easy media access to all potential users and consumers.

The theory reflects disappointment with Libertarian and Social Responsibility theories for failing to deliver social benefits expected of them. It condemns the commercialisation and monopolisation of private owned media and the concentration and bureaucratization of government owned media. It also criticises the public media for being too elitist, too susceptible to the whims and caprices of the government, too rigid and too slavish to professional ideals at the expense of social responsibility.

It therefore calls for greater attention of the media to the needs, interests and aspirations of the receiver in a political society. It calls for pluralism in the place of monopolisation, decentralisation and localisation in the place of centralism.

Also that media conglomerates be replaced or mixed with small-scale media enterprises. However it holds that the mass media have become too socially important to be left in the hands of professionals. It argues that until a nation is well established and its economic development well underway, media must be supportive rather than critical of government. Journalists must not tear apart government efforts to promote development but, rather, assist government in implementing such policies.

The duty of the press practicing this theory is to promote development.

It also emphasises grassroots participation. The tenets of this theory are: 1. Media must accept and carry out positive development tasks in line with nationally established policy. Freedom of the media should be open to economic priorities and development needs of the society 3. Media should give priority in their content to the national culture and language s. The media should also give priority of coverage to other development countries.

Media should give priority in news and information to link with other developing countries that are close geographically, culturally or politically.

Journalists and other media workers have responsibilities as well as freedoms in their information gathering and dissemination tasks.

In the interest of development ends the state has a right to intervene in, or restrict, media operation; and devices of censorship, subsidy and direct control can be justified. They believe that the media are corrupting influences that undermine the social order and that average people are defenseless against their influence. These theories emerged in the second half of the 19th Century when mass circulation of newspapers and magazines, movies, talkies, and radio came to prominence.

The theories are treated below: 3. The theory was a propaganda theory, produced by a combination of Behaviourist and Freudian schools of thought. Behaviourism held that human action was as a result of or response to external environmental stimuli.

Description of Mass Communication Theories. Explanation.

It argued that the so- called consciousness was meant to rationalise behaviours after they were triggered by the external stimuli. Freudianism saw the self that controls human action as having three parts: Ego- rational mind; Id- pleasure seeking part of the mind and Superego- internalised set of cultural rules.

It said the human action was often the product of the darker side of the self -the Id-, which is the pleasure-seeking part of the mind. By appealing to the Id, so that it could overcome the ego, then, propaganda would be effective. So, the Magic Bullet saw the media as conveying external stimuli that can condition anyone to behave in whatever way a master propagandist wants.

People were viewed as powerless to consciously resist manipulation no matter their level of education or social status. People had no ability to screen out or criticise these messages.

The messages penetrate to their subconscious mind, and transform how they think and feel. Lasswell argued that the worldwide economic depression and political strife had made people particularly vulnerable to propaganda conveyed by the mass media. He posited that the power of propaganda was not so much the result of the substance or appeal of specific messages but, rather, the result of the vulnerable state of mind of average people.

Unlike the Magic Bullet Theory's prediction of rapid and powerful persuasive effects of the mass media, this Propaganda Theory said that mediated propaganda conditioned the audience slowly over time. Propaganda works through projection of master symbols, emotioncharged images for example, a national flag. Lasswell's depiction of the working mechanism of propaganda was especially prescient in Germany.

The National Social Party Nazis under Adolph Hitler took control of the German government in and launched a systematic campaign of propaganda to win popular support for its policies. Joseph Goebbels Propaganda Ministry produced propaganda films to promote the party's militarism and anti-Semitism.

A network of carefully-crafted Nazi master symbols included the swastika, the "Zeig-Heil" gesture, German ascendancy from a mythical Aryan race, and a fictitious Jewish conspiracy. Reinforced by terrorist tactics of the secret police, the propaganda helped to firm a Nazi grip on the highly educated German people.

The Propaganda Theory ascribed great persuasive power to a technocratic elite. Influential newspaper columnist Walter Lippmann, author of the first book on public opinion , thought that propaganda so threatened democracy that the mass media must be censored to protect the public from their powerful influences. Later theorists decided that people are not so gullible and that the s was a unique era. He does not know what is happening, why it is happening, what ought to happen.

Lippman did not believe in the Libertarian assumptions of the rational audience; he thus advocated the placement of control of information gathering and distribution in the hands of a benevolent technocracy- a scientist elite- that could be trusted to use scientific methods to sort fact from fiction and make good decisions about who should receive various messages. Methods such as experimentation, field surveys, content analysis, focus group etc are used.

The social scientific approach to investigating the effects of the media led to the emergence of limited effects theories. The theories include the following: 3. In other words, people learn attitude, values and beliefs in the context of experience and this result in differences in the way they understand and perceive media messages.

The Social Category Perspective It assumes that members of a given social category will respond to media stimuli in more or less uniform ways. The Two-Step flow was later modified to Multi-Step or N-Step flow theory, since opinion leaders also have opinion leaders and so on continuously. What may happen at times is for a person to try as much as possible to make some things that are not psychologically nor consistently aligned consistent to his values and beliefs through a variety of ways.

Whatever it may be, there is no doubt that it functions as complex and highly sophisticated filtering mechanism that screen out useless sensory data while it identifies and highlights those that are useful in the data. Generally, people tend to expose themselves to those mass communications that are in accord with their existing attitudes and interests; while they consciously and unconsciously avoid communications of opposite hue.Chapter The media organization: pressures and demands The influences on the media and the demands from society, pressure and interest groups, and the audience, as well as internal pressures, are discussed in this chapter.

The emergent structure of feeling of the modern era is the inability to communicate, the fragmentation of cultural identity and a belief in the sovereign individual Williams, c. The later history of the book is one of steady expansion in volume and range of content and also of struggle for freedom of the press and the rights of authors. Introducing communication theory: Analysis and application. Nevertheless, on certain dimensions, clear differences do remain.

When and how does cultural theory begin? Explain the four dierent relations given.

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