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Sociology of the mass media. by Mind Map: Sociology of the mass media.
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Sociology of the mass media.

Content analysis

Content analysis

Content analysis is used to analyse the content of the media product, for example newspaper and magazine. It is often used to quantify a particular aspect of media content by counting of measuring it. For example Lobban(1974) and Best (1993) used content analysis to examin gender representation in children's reading schemes by counting the numbers appering in particular categories, such as heroines and heros. this type of content analysis is part of the quantitative approach to research. problems with content analysis General problem with secondary data, possibility with bias or error on the part of original data. doesnt tell us how the audience is affected. It has issue with validity.

Mass Media

Mass Media

Early studies of the mass media in the 1920s and 1930s hadstraightsforward definitions that referred to ways of comumicating with large audiences with things like cinemas, magazines, newspapersand radio. However now days defining the mass media has become more difficult due the new technology, for example the internet and mobile phones. These new technology allows information to circulate around the world almost immediately and results in the wold becoming what McLuhan (1971) describes as "Global Village"


Provides us with a basic defination of the mass media:"the mass media is a simply the means through which content, whether fact or fiction, is produced by organisation and transmitted to recived by an audience" McCullagh 2002.


key aspects to understanding the mass media oin their social context by indentifying key aspect to help us understnd their roles. Mass Media as of communication between "Sender"" and "Receiver". Mass Media Texts as cultal products with social, cultural and political significances. Mass Media as industries or organisations Mass Media as agents of social changes and globalisation . Mass Media as agent of socialisation and powerful sources of social meaning.


Power and Infuences

Who has power and influnce when it comes to the Mass Media is widely debated. Some people feel that the Mass Media is benificial as it educates, informs and entertain, as it gives thes audience diversity it also gives people a chance to exercise choice. On the other hand, other concerns are that poeple do not critically observe what they watch and it could be said that  human behaviour is as a result of what we watch. Also it could be said that the media has a negitive and controlling affect on the audience.


It is widely debatable subject as the senders may control what is on TV and therefore what we watch, however if we don't watch something as the receiver then the senders would take it off air and would no longer show it, so it could be argues that the receivers have the control.



Censorship is the the rating thing have, for example if a film is PG or if it is a 18. It is a way in which the media can prevent certain material reaching a certain audience. (censorship made by media professional is known as self-censorship). Formal censorship= regulation from official bodies such as the government. Informal censorship= regulations made by media professional based on mutual agreement and informal discussion.

Should we have censorship.

Years ago when there want all this new technology cencership could stop 12year olds from watching an 18. however no days it it much more difficult as the are a lot more media technology like the internet where you can watch whatever you want,. as a result of this it is debateable now whether or not censorship works and if it should still exsist. censorship is also debateable as it is questionable whether or not it really does have an affect on child, if a 17 year old watches and 18 is it really going to affect them? however censorship can protect vulnerable member of the public and it can be said that the Mass Media can have a significan affect on society.  



Semiology is a research method that includes analysing the meaning of signs and codes within cultural context. These signs can be found within written text and visual representation in the media. the task of semiology is that it uncovers the the message being conveyed. Some sociologist use it to uncover what they believe to be an ideological message. Problems with Semiology It relies greatly on the researches interpretation, and therefore it could be said that it lacks validity. It doesn't show how the audience receives the message.


Sociologist tend to use field experience. Problem with Experiments There are significant ethical concerns, for example informed consent. Artificial environment can cause lack of validity. Hawthorn effect. (because the research is there it can affect the behaviour of the participants)