Media audience task

Stage one

The Hypodermic Needle model (also known as the Hypodermic-syringe model, Transmission-belt model, or magic bullet theory) is a model of communications suggesting that an intended message is directly received and wholly accepted by the receiver. The model is rooted in 1930s behaviorism and is largely considered obsolete today. The “Magic Bullet” or “Hypodermic Needle Theory” of direct influence effects was not as widely accepted by scholars as many books on mass communication indicate. The magic bullet theory was not based on empirical findings from research but rather on assumptions of the time about human nature. People were assumed to be “uniformly controlled by their biologically based ‘instincts’ and that they react more or less uniformly to whatever ‘stimuli’ came along” (Lowery & De Fleur, 1995, p. 400). The “Magic Bullet” theory graphically assumes that the media’s message is a bullet fired from the “media gun” into the viewer’s “head” (Berger 1995). Similarly, the “Hypodermic Needle Model” uses the same idea of the “shooting” paradigm. It suggests that the media injects its messages straight into the passive audience (Croteau, Hoynes 1997). This passive audience is immediately affected by these messages. The public essentially cannot escape from the media’s influence, and is therefore considered a “sitting duck” (Croteau, Hoynes 1997). Both models suggest that the public is vulnerable to the messages shot at them because of the limited communication tools and the studies of the media’s effects on the masses at the time (Davis, Baron 1981).

Stage two

The cartoon “Winnie the Pooh”:


The chosen media has a specific format in order to entertain young children. It is aimed at them regardless of their gender, class, etc. As you can see it is a cartoon. A cartoon is a form of two-dimensional visual art that refers to a drawing intended for satire, caricature or humor. It simultaneously entertains and educates children. The characters are drawn in a very colourful and funny way but they also carry certain values that emphasise on the relationship between humans and animals. It teaches children the secret of friendship, loyalty, bonding together and having respect for the others. Even though they are all from different species such as rabbit, bear, tiger, pig, kangaroo, donkey, etc. there is no difference between them when it comes to their friendship. One of the characters is human so the cartoon stress on the fact that human and animals can and have to have a peaceful relationship as well. Moreover, the main character is the bear Winnie, which is honey-addicted, fact that conveys the idea for a healthy life.

The Hypodermic model can be found in “Winnie the Pooh” in both above-mentioned messages. The notions of friendship, respectful attitude and healthy life are directly perceived by the audience. Taking the fact that the audience consists of young children, it is highly likely that it will copy the seen in its behaviour straight out as that kind of reaction is common for this group.

Stage three

Beyonce’s blog:

The chosen media is Beyonce’s blog. She is an American R&B recording artist, actress and fashion designer. She is mainly famous for her career of a singer.

The media is aimed at the Beyonce’s fans all over the world regardless of their gender, class, etc. It builds up a link between them and the celebrity as well as within her audience. Through the blog the fans constantly receive and share information concerning their favourite celebrity even if at the time she does has neither performances, nor any other kind of public appearance. This is important and entertaining for the blog’s audience as only listening to her music or watching her records is not enough to satisfy the need of their fandom.

The blog can also be a two-way source of information. Not only do her fans get to know their idol better but Beyonce herself may find some useful information concerning her audience’s taste, preferences and expectations through their comments, for instance.

The Internet and the blogs play the role of the new and unique way in Media Communication. Through it the audience is given the opportunity to be an active media consumer which used to be impossible with the old fashion media.

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