Mass media * The mass media are pervasive in our everyday lives. * The primary mass media are built on print, electronic, chemical and digital technologies. * Scholars have devised models to explain the mass media. * Most mass media organizations must be profitable to stay in business. * Mass media are focusing on narrower audiences. * Mass media ownership is consolidating. * Technology is blurring traditional distinctions between mass media.
The Simpsons and the First Amendment • About 22 percent of Americans could name the five members of The Simpsons family, according to a survey conducted by the McCornmick Tribune Freedom Museum (March 2006). • About 52 percent of Americans could name at least two members of The Simpsons family. • About 40 percent of Americans could name two of the three American Idol judges. • One in 1,000 people (.1 percent) could name the five freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment. • One in four Americans could name more than one of the freedoms.
Class results 1. The names of the five Simpsons family members are Homer (94 percent) Marge (88 percent) Bart (94 percent) Lisa (94 percent) Maggie (76 percent) 2. The three judges on American Idol are Paula Abdul (71 percent) Simon Cowell (88 percent) Randy Jackson (59 percent) 3. The First Amendment rights are class national survey Freedom of speech (94 percent) (69 percent) Freedom of religion (59 percent) (24 percent) Freedom of the press (47 percent) (11 percent) Right to assembly (11 percent) (10 percent) Right to petition for the redress of grievances (.05 percent) (1 percent) Right to bear arms (29 percent)/fair trial/speedy trial/equal rights/not house soldiers/all respected
What are the mass media? • Pervasive • Americans average almost 70 percent of their waking hours using the mass media. Media exposure often blends into the backgrounds of people’s lives. • Americans learn almost everything about the world beyond their environment through the mass media. • Often what is learned through the mass media is popular culture.
Daily media usage • Time spend exclusively with media: 3 hours, 45 minutes • Concurrent activities: 5 hours, 37 minutes • Media multi-tasking: 45.9 minutes
The average person spends almost 10 hours a day using some type of media. Key findings of the Ball University research include: --About 30 percent of the observed waking day was spent with mediaas the sole activity versus 20.8 percent for work activity, while an additional 39 percent of the day was spent with media while involved in some other activity --In any given hour no less than 30 percent of those studied were engaged in some way with television, and in some hours of the day that figure rose to 70 percent --About 30 percent of all media time is spent exposed to more than one medium at a time --People ages 18 to 24 spend less time online than any other age group except those older than 65
Americans will devote half their lives to forms of media next year • Dec. 14, 2006/USA TODAY • Americans love their media — so much that next year they'll spend nearly half their lives watching TV, going online, listening to the radio (or music) and reading. • That's what the U.S. Census Bureau is predicting in its “Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2007.” • The annual report uses data from several sources, including private industry and non-profits. It has statistics on everything from elections to transportation to finances.
In 2000, Americans spent 3,333 hours consuming media — and most of that time (1,467 hours) was spent in front of the TV, according to Veronis Suhler Stevenson, a media-oriented money management company that supplied much of the media data used in the report. • In 2007, Americans spent 3,518 hours with the media, including 1,555 in front of the TV, says Veronis Suhler Stevenson. That means the average American will spend roughly 146 days, or five months, consuming media. • "It's the activity we do more than anything else," said Leo Kivijarv, vice president of research at PQ Media, which collaborated with Veronis Suhler Stevenson.
However, the numbers don't mean we're just sitting in front of our machines; we're multitasking. • "I know people who use television as wallpaper," said Paul Saffo, a technology forecaster based in Silicon Valley. But, he added, "The news means that America is making a smooth transition from a couch potato to a mouse potato. Put another way, I suspect the only exercise Americans are getting is walking between their TVs and their computers.” • The numbers mean that "people want to have — and almost need to have — information and entertainment at their fingertips now, 24 hours a day," Kivijarv says. • They also mean that technology tools are continuing to shift our "social, political and economic lives," said Lee Rainie, director of the Pew Internet & American Life Project, which also supplied data for the report. "In the past decade, the Internet and cellphones have changed the way people interact with each other, the way they work, the way they spend their leisure time," Rainie said. Also changed: "The way they maintain and grow their social networks, and the way they share their stories with others through blogs (and) social networking sites."
The mass media Informational —news —advertisements —books Entertaining —music —movies —books —recordings Persuasive —newspaper editorials —advertising —public relations
Mass media bind people • Bring communities together by distributing messages that become shared (common) experiences. • Mass media's culturally binding role has been diminishing recently (three TV networks to hundreds of TV channels). • Media content was produced for a broad audience. It’s now produced for specialized niches of the population. This could increase the media becoming a vehicle for dividing society instead of bringing society together.
Sports Fan Names Newborn Son ESPN • By Associated PressPublished October 7, 2006 • BILOXI, Miss. -- Leann Real promised her husband, an avid sports fan, that if they ever had a son he'd get to pick the name. ESPN Montana Real was born this week at Biloxi Regional Medical Center. Rusty Real, of D'Iberville, chose ESPN (pronounced Espen) after the sports network and Montana after football legend Joe Montana. Baby ESPN isn't alone. Three others were cited in a 2005 report on tivocommunity.com about the network's 25th anniversary. They are Espn Malachi McCall in Pampa, Texas; Espn Curiel in Corpus Christi, Texas; and Espn Blondeel in Michigan. "We were the talk of the hospital," Rusty Real said. "The nurses kept asking my wife if she was really going to let her husband name him ESPN. She said, 'Oh, yes.'"
Primary Mass Media and Their Technological Bases • Print Technology • Books, Newspapers, Magazines • Electronic Technology • Records, Radio, Television, Internet • Chemical/Photographic Technology • Movies (moving to digital technology) • Digital Technology • Traditional mass media have adapted. It has created a merging of media (e-books) or entirely new categories of media offerings (Google, MySpace)
Mass media models • Hot-Cool Model • Engaged vs. passive • Hot media require a high degree of concentration to use them. Cool media can be used passively.
Entertainment-Information Model • Media are defined by their content. • The content can be entertaining or informational. Infotainment is a blend of entertainment and information. • Model limitations: no media content is strictly entertaining or informative. It misses the potential of all media to do more such as persuade or bind communities.
Content-Distribution Model • Separates the functions of a company into creation divisions and distribution divisions. • Vertical integration: a sole company’s control over products from creation to distribution. (Disney—Disney studios, ABC)
Elitist-Populist Model • Elitists:serious media content that advances social and cultural interests is essential to society. • Populists: mass media are at their best when they give people what they want. • Media criticism usually follows this elitist-populist continuum.
Push-Pull Model • Push:media such as advertisements that intrude on the consumer (pop-ups). • Pull: media that consumers locate themselves (magazine ads).
Maturation Model • This model looks at mass media by studying three stages of development. Books are a mature medium and the Internet is a new medium. • Innovation Stage • Technology emerges to create medium. • Entrepreneurial Stage • Commercial possibilities are explored. • Stability Stage • Technology can be marketed for widespread use.
Media Must Be Profitable • Most mass media owners are in business to make a profit. Although some companies exist to serve the readers (Christian Science Monitor) or viewers (PBS), most need to make money to stay in business. • Economic foundation—sources of revenue • advertising • circulation/cable subscribers/movie tickets • audience donations (PBS) • private support (businesses, foundations, churches) • government subsidies (PBS, legal notices) • government advertising (post office, military recruiting)
Media demassification • The mass media are focusing on narrower audiences. • This demassification is occurring as media company owners are looking for new ways to effectively sell more products. • Even with targeting narrow segments of audiences, the media try to reach as many people as possible in those segments. • A medium will focus on narrower audience segments as it matures. As new technology competes with older media, the older media begins to narrow the segment of the population it targets.
Demassification • Magazines—family-oriented stories with multiple photos. The competition from television helped magazines to change into publications targeting select readers. • Radio—family-oriented programming at its beginning. This programming changed to target narrower segments of listeners when television became popular. • Television—broadcast programming changed when cable television became popular. (For example, 72 percent of TV households watched I Love Lucy on Monday nights in 1953. About 15-20 percent of TV households will watch the top show in 2009.
Effects of demassification • Advertisers are able to reach narrow and targeted segments of the population. This is a bonus to company officials who are targeting their product to a certain part of the population. • This media focus on narrow audience segments will continue because of three newer technologies: • the Internet • digitized messages • satellite communication
Media conglomeration • Mass media ownership is consolidating. America has fewer independent media companies now than ever before. Most medium-size companies are joining together or being bought by larger companies.
Media ownership consolidation • Media ownership collaboration • complicated joint deals Dubious effects of conglomeration • growing vertical and horizontal integration • quality can suffer and sameness • profit-driven Positive effects of conglomeration • stronger financial base for subsidiaries • more audience choices with repackaging • parent corporations own companies abroad, which helps to open global markets
(AOL) Time Warner HBO CNN CNN International CNN en Espanol CNN Headline News CNN Airport Network Court TV (with Liberty Media) Warner Bros. Warner Bros. Studios Warner Bros. Television (production) The CW Television Network Warner Bros. Television Animation Hanna - Barbera Cartoons Castle Rock Entertainment Warner Home Video Time Time Asia Time Atlantic Time Canada Time Latin America Time South Pacific Time Money Time For Kids Fortune Life Sports Illustrated Sports Illustrated International SI for Kids People People en Español Teen People Top media companies
Viacom/CBS (split into two companies in 2006) CW MTV MTV2 Nickelodeon BET Nick at Nite VH1 Spike TV Comedy Central Showtime The Movie Channel CBS Radio Paramount Top media companies
(Walt) Disney ABC ESPN US Weekly DISCOVER The Disney Channel Toon Disney A&E Television (37.5%, with Hearst and GE) The History Channel (with Hearst and GE) Lifetime Television (50%, with Hearst) Lifetime Movie Network (50% with Hearst) Walt Disney Pictures Touchstone Pictures Hollywood Pictures Caravan Pictures Miramax Films Buena Vista Home Video Buena Vista Home Entertainment Top media companies
NBC Universal NBC Universal (80%-owned by General Electric, 20% controlled by Vivendi Universal) NBC Stations Telemundo Stations NBC Universal Television StudioNBC Universal Television Distribution CNBC MSNBC Bravo Mun2TV Sci-Fi Trio USA Film Universal Pictures Parks Universal Parks & Resorts Top media companies
Top media companies • News Corporation • FOX • 20th Century Fox • Fox Searchlight Pictures • Fox Television Studios • MySpace • DirecTV • MyNetworkTV
Top media companies • Bertelsmann • Random House Publishing • BMG Labels • Arista Records
Combined integration • Most conglomerates combine vertical and horizontal integration. • Horizontal integration—organizations starting or acquiring other companies in a similar line of business. • Vertical integration—starting or acquiring businesses at different stages in the production process (content provider merging with a content distributor).
Integration • Integration—Disney, for example, owns not only a group of movie studios but also movie theme parks where topics of the movies become attractions. Pirates of the Caribbean, for example, was based on a long-standing theme park ride. • Disney also owns recording studios that sell movie soundtracks and publishing companies that produce books and magazines about their movies and movie characters. It owns a profession hockey team, which was the subject of one of its movies. (horizontal integration) • Disney also owns ABC television network and several cable channels that show its movies as well as video companies that distribute those movies (and others) in video form. (vertical integration)
Intracorporate synergy • After shunning the television industry in the 1940s and 50s, the movie industry now works closely with small-screen productions. Television programming is often produced in Hollywood. • Many movie and television studios are owned by the same conglomerate. • Company movie studio TV network • Viacom Paramount CBS & CW • Disney Disney Pictures ABC • News Corp. 20th Century Fox Fox • GE/Universal Universal NBC • Time Warner Warner Bros CW & HBO
Media melding • Digital technology is blurring traditional distinctions between mass media by removing many of the differences between the mediums. • Mass media now are created and distributed in this digital form. This change means that the same technologies can be used to transmit text, audio, or video in an integrated communication system such as the Internet. • Separate channels of communication are no longer needed for each medium, which means that the differences between the mediums are eroding.
Media melding • In this “media melding,” newspapers or television news reports can now be read or watched online. Movies can be watched on the computer. Radio or television programs can be downloaded to iPods or cell phones. • The blurring of the media will only continue. This is in part because Americans are using the Internet more and in different ways. • This digital melding is being accelerated by the continuing consolidation of companies that produce and distribute mass media. • Increased demassification is occurring in some part because of digitization of media content. Digitization makes it easier to identify segments of the mass audience and tailor messages to narrower interests.
Mass media questions • How are the mass media pervasive in our everyday lives? • What are the three technologies on which the primary mass media are built? • Explain the models that scholars have devised to explain the mass media (hot-cool, entertainment-information, content-distribution, elitist-populist, push-pull and maturation). • Define demassification. Describe demassification that has occurred in radio, magazines and television. • Is conglomeration good or bad for mass media consumers? • How are mass media and digital technology converging?