1.2 Why would they want to "consume" that media text?
1.3 Audience Classification
1.3.1 Mass Audience = products created for broad appeal (to
appeal to a wide range of demographics)
1.3.2 Niche Audience = a small audience that are
targeted to consume a niche media product.
1.3.3 Primary Audience = the main or intended audience.
1.3.4 Secondary Audience = an additional and unintentional audience.
1.3.5 Demographic social grade scale
sourced from pdf guide, of which this specific content was sourced from Wikipedia.
126.96.36.199 used in the UK to judge/categorise audience type(s).
188.8.131.52 Grade A - Upper Middle Class
184.108.40.206.1 occupation - higher
managerial, administrative or
220.127.116.11 Grade B - Middle Class
18.104.22.168.1 occupation - intermediate
managerial, administrative or
22.214.171.124 Grade C1 - Lower Middle Class
126.96.36.199.1 occupation - Supervisory or clerical and junior managerial,
administrative or professional
188.8.131.52 Grade C2 - Skilled Working Class
184.108.40.206.1 occupation - Skilled manual workers
220.127.116.11 Grade D - Working Class
18.104.22.168.1 Semi and unskilled manual workers
22.214.171.124 Grade E - Those at the lowest levels of subsistence
126.96.36.199.1 occupation - casual or lowest grade workers, pensioners and others who depend on
the welfare state for their income.
1.3.6 Other scales are based on audiences' values, lifestyles, political beliefs and
activities. This is known as Psychographics.
1.3.7 BARB, RAJAR and NRS count audience figures
1.4 Uses and Gratifications
1.4.1 The belief that audiences passively
receive messages is long gone.
188.8.131.52 Katz and Blumler proposed from their research into audience behaviour
that audiences use media texts for a variety of reasons.
1.4.2 1 - Information: finding out about events, satisfying curiosity
gaining a sense of security through knowledge.
1.4.3 2 - Personal identity: reinforcement for personal values, finding models of
behaviour, insight into one's self.
1.4.4 3 - Integration and Social Interaction: insight into circumstances of others; social empathy, identifying with others
and gaining a sense of belonging, interaction, enabling one to connect with family, friends and society.
1.4.5 4 - Entertainment: escaping, diversion from problems, relaxing, getting enjoyment, filling time, emotional release.
1.5 Two-Step theory
1.5.1 Opinion leaders like critics, reviewers, entertainment commentators,
editors and social networking sites can help shape trends and suggest
popularity. The public then become 'opinion followers'.
1.5.2 Two-step theory also relates to political, institutional theory
about the elite as the media producers. Opinion leaders
represent the views of the elite and reinforces the 'status quo'.
1.6.1 Audiences read texts. Hall's RECEPTION THEORY states that texts are
encoded for a specific and PREFERRED READING.
1.6.2 If the construction of meaning needs the audience, it is now believed that, at best
audiences 'NEGOTIATE' reading as they modify, select and discard parts of the text
based upon personal experiences etc.
1.6.3 OPPOSITIONAL or SUBVERSIVE readings occasionally happen when the audience read a text is a way
unintended and unexpected by the text producers. POLYSEMIC TEXTS are open to multiple readings.
1.6.4 Anchorage is often used to fix meaning.
1.7 Audience as Product
1.7.1 Through media texts, audiences are delivered to producers as potential consumers for their
products. The 'price' that the audience has to pay for viewing their favourite programme is
exposure to continual, subtle and invasive advertising.
2 Narrative Theory
2.1 Media texts tell a story. From print posters, adverts, news articles, films,
television documentary - all have a narrative.
2.2 NARRATIVE THEORY is concerned with how the story is constructed - from character types, plot organisation, plot development and genre.
2.3.1 Narrative is often structured with:
184.108.40.206.1 Everything is OK, stable, as it has been
220.127.116.11.1 A problem that threatens the equilibrium
18.104.22.168 New Equilibrium
22.214.171.124.1 a new and slightly altered state resulting from the conflict
2.4.1 Binary opposition
126.96.36.199 e.g. good v evil
2.5.1 He analysed typical character types from fairytales.
He believed that most narratives have a variation or
combination of these character types.
2.5.2 Character types
188.8.131.52 The villain
184.108.40.206 The Princess
220.127.116.11 Princess' Father
18.104.22.168 The Hero
22.214.171.124 The Helper
126.96.36.199.1 may have magical powers
188.8.131.52 The Donor
184.108.40.206.1 gives objects to help hero
220.127.116.11.1.1 The Dispatcher
18.104.22.168.1.1.1 sends hero on mission
22.214.171.124 The False Hero
126.96.36.199.1 prevents hero in quest
2.6.1 Active audience
188.8.131.52 "The death of the author is the birth of the reader"
184.108.40.206 Looks for patterns across texts
2.6.3 Myth and Ideology
220.127.116.11 Representations within text may mask reality and create myths
which support dominant ideologies.
2.6.4 5 Narrative Codes
18.104.22.168 Cultural code
22.214.171.124 Semic code
126.96.36.199 Event and actions code
188.8.131.52 Enigma code
184.108.40.206 Symbolic code
3 Media Language
3.1 A media text = the sum of its many parts
3.1.1 these parts include EVERY element within it...
220.127.116.11 These elements include...
18.104.22.168.1 Camera angles
22.214.171.124.3 Font (of text)
126.96.36.199.4.1 high/low key
188.8.131.52.5 body language
184.108.40.206.7 These 'elements' are known as MEDIA LANGUAGE
220.127.116.11.7.1 ...also known as Codes or Form.
18.104.22.168.7.2 These different 'codes' can be categorized as...
3.2.1 This is the study of the language of signs, which
deals with meanings we attach to signs.
22.214.171.124 they consist of...
126.96.36.199.1 the SIGNIFIER
188.8.131.52.1.1 the thing or sign itself.
184.108.40.206.2 the SIGNIFIED
220.127.116.11.2.1 the meaning we attach to the sign
18.104.22.168 the literal meaning of a thing or sign
22.214.171.124 the second level of meaning, agreed by the community but not
an inherent quality in the thing itself.
3.3.1 Where signs and codes are repeated
over time, they become CONVENTIONS -
expected patterns in (media) texts.
126.96.36.199 e.g. rain on a British summer holiday (or any other holiday
time in the UK!), conventions equal the 'typical' form.
Questions to consider:
What issues does the construction of reality have for News and Documentary production?
How does the element of 'reality engage the audience'?
3.4.1 Media texts have to APPEAR/SEEM to be real in order for the audience to
accept them. Even a fictional dramatic 19th Century period drama needs to
suggest reality through high production values, by not having an actor taking a
call on their mobile during the shoot, or TV aerials in the background!
3.4.2 Where reality issues are also important, is in the News, Documentaries,
Confessional talk shows and (of course) Reality TV.
3.4.3 All of these are constructs of reality, some with higher entertainment values than others.
3.5 Reality TV
3.5.1 Symbolic violence
3.5.2 Emotional realism
3.5.4 Inter-relation with other platforms
3.5.5 A sign of cultural decline?
3.5.6 Rise of Celebrity
188.8.131.52 "Celebrity is produced and constructed by concerted, co-operative
action of media industries for profit"
184.108.40.206.1.1 Pleasure gained through escapism
220.127.116.11.2 Adorno and Frankfurt
18.104.22.168.2.1 Celebrities can have a positive and negative impact
22.214.171.124.1 resonate with the ideas, values and spirit of the time
3.6 Post Modernism
3.6.1 the idea of "layering of old ideas with new ideas, from multiple
sources to create something new again.
3.6.2 Post-modern texts may include elements of:
126.96.36.199 Extending or re-writing fictional lives
188.8.131.52 Multiple, unreliable and disjointed narratives
4.1 ...is how a "thing" (person, place, object, concept) is presented to an audience.
4.1.1 And this is known as a REPRESENTATION
184.108.40.206 The 'thing' has been through a process of modification,
mediation and selection before being presented.
220.127.116.11 Even words and photographs are REPRESENTATIONS.
18.104.22.168 The physical shape of a word has no meaning in itself - it is merely lines and curves. It has been given an agreed
and accepted meaning. A photograph is not the 'thing' but an image or representation of the 'thing'.
4.2 The central concept - presentation has been constructed and
meaning is negotiated or accepted and agreed and so means we
can examine representations more critically and analytically.
4.3 Key Questions
4.3.1 What is being represented?
4.3.2 How are they represented?
4.3.3 Who is creating the representation?
4.3.4 Who benefits from the representation?
4.3.5 Does the representation fit with dominant ideology?
4.3.6 What is left out of the representation?
4.4.1 ....are representations of people that are repeated over
time, and so become a symbol of the group itself.
4.4.2 They are sometimes thought of as a simplification, a shorthand used to
rapidly access and conceptualise a diverse 'group'.
22.214.171.124 He argued that stereotypes are not 'simple', but contain complex
understanding of and information about roles and status in
society. He also argued that stereotypes are not always negative
and often contain truth.
4.5 Dominant Ideology
126.96.36.199 a set of deep rooted beliefs that impact on a person's actions, expectations and goals
4.5.2 are the widely held beliefs by many members of a society.
4.5.3 In Marxist theory, this dominant ideology serves the interest of the ruling classes.
4.6.1 Mulvey's Male Gaze theory
188.8.131.52 Media texts are created as if through the
eyes of a hetereosexual male, where women
are viewed for the pleasure of men.
4.6.2 Even well into 21st Century, women are often represented in
stereotypical ways, either flawed for not living up to the 'madonna' or
'mother' role or admired as an object or beauty or for sex.
4.6.3 Some argue that, far from being equal, women's status has
only appeared greater post-feminism, because of women's
importance as consumers. They are vital in a capitalist society.
4.6.4 The Bechdel test has three criteria that a media product must fulfil in order to pass:
184.108.40.206 1 - it must have at least 2 women in it
220.127.116.11 2 - women who talk to each other
18.104.22.168 3 - to talk about something other than a man
4.7.1 Representations of the black community
4.7.2 Diaspora identity
4.7.3 Positive and negative stereotypes
4.8.1 He argued that 'reality' in the modern world cannot exist
4.8.2 The media saturation of society means that all 'presentations' of truth or fact
are actually 'representations, mediated, filtered, selected'.
4.8.3 Truth becomes lost and obscured.
4.8.4 He believed we live in a state of 'hyper-reality' that seems real but is in fact a version of reality.
5.1 An institution can relate to a company or an organisation
5.2 It can also relate to an industry or sector such as the Media or Education
5.3 Finally, you may need to consider wider institutions such as the government, and
5.4 Text Type and Ownership
5.4.1 To understand WHY a text has been constructed the way it has, you have to understand
WHERE it has come from, what limits and constrains it or gives it freedom.
5.4.2 Text Type or Platform
22.214.171.124 Print magazines
126.96.36.199.3 Channel 4
188.8.131.52 Print news
184.108.40.206.1 The Times
220.127.116.11.2 Daily Mail
18.104.22.168.3 The Sun
22.214.171.124.4 The i
126.96.36.199.5 The Guardian
188.8.131.52.6 Daily Telegraph
184.108.40.206.1 e.g. itv
220.127.116.11 Public Service (PSB)
18.104.22.168.1 e.g. BBC
22.214.171.124.1 e.g. Universal
126.96.36.199 Political Bias
188.8.131.52.1 Left wing
184.108.40.206.2 Right wing
220.127.116.11.1 e.g. Aardman Animations
5.5.1 Cultural Imperialism
18.104.22.168 A process by which one country dominates the other countries' media
consumption and consequently dominates their values and ideologies.
5.6 Political Theory
5.6.1 Marxist theory says
22.214.171.124 a small, ruling, elite group have control, who dominate the poorer,
less powerful mass - the workforce, the larger group.
5.6.2 Gramsci took classic Marxist ideas further. He thought that...
126.96.36.199 ...the mass are in a way 'complicit' with the ruling power - the masses accept
this power, with the belief that the ruling class know what is best for them. They
agree to maintain or keep the 'status-quo' on the condition that they have the
opportunity to negotiate or fight against restrictions that they do not agree
with. This is called HEGEMONY.
5.7 Hierachy of Needs
Question - how do media texts work on fulfilling these needs at each of the stages?
5.7.1 Maslow created his Hierachy of needs which marks the stages of growth in an
individual's physical, social and psychological development.
5.8 Moral Panic
Questions to consider:
How do moral panics help to maintain institutional "status quo"?
Who creates them?
Who benefits from them?
5.8.1 According to Wikipedia a "moral panic is the intensity of feeling expressed in
population about an issue that appears to threaten the social order [and stability].
According to Stanley Cohen, author of Folk Devils and Moral Panics (1972), and
credited as creator of the term, a moral panic occurs when "[a] condition, episode,
person or group of persons emerges to become defined as a threat to societal
values and interests." Those who start the panic when they fear a threat to
prevailing social or cultural values are known by researchers as "moral
entrepreneurs", while people who supposedly threaten the social order have been
described as "folk devils"."
188.8.131.52 social networking
184.108.40.206 computer games
5.9 Consumer society
5.9.1 Dyer came up with LINES OF APPEAL, that
are used in advertising to sell consumer goods.
220.127.116.11.1 Happy families -
everyone wants to
belong to one
18.104.22.168.2 Childhood - desire to go back
to childhood or nurture
22.214.171.124.3 Rich, luxurious lifestyles -
aspirational to that lifestyle
126.96.36.199.4 Dreams and fantasy
188.8.131.52.5 Successful [in]
romance and love
184.108.40.206.6 Self-importance and pride
220.127.116.11.7 Comedy and humour
18.104.22.168.8 Elite people (e.g.
celebrities) or experts