college students

Invisible Children clearly accomplished a tremendous amount of good in a relatively short period of time. The fact that this organization rose to just prominence so quickly when it was founded and run by

Invisible Children clearly accomplished a tremendous amount of good in a relatively short period of time. The fact that this organization rose to just prominence so quickly when it was founded and run by college students is even more impressive. Could a more sophisticated and long-term media strategy have helped Invisible Children to achieve longevity and avoid its dramatic spike in success and subsequent rapid decline? Did the leader’s youth, inexperience, and idealism—characteristics that fueled their passion and success, ultimately lead to their downfall? How did the mass media attention impact the fate of the Invisible Children organization? In this chapter, you will learn techniques to enable you as a media consumer to make your own judgments.

Prior to any discussion about the nature and function of mass communication and mass media, it is important to have a shared understanding of basic terminology, particularly since the terms “communication” and “media” are used in a variety of contexts to refer to a range of activities and concepts. The term “mass communication” refers to messages sent to a large audience by individuals, groups, or organizations. The vehicle through which mass messages are sent is referred to as mass media, such as newspapers, radio, broadcast television, the dramatic arts, books, and more recently the Internet.

The messages that are sent via mass media to large audiences are referred to as mass messages, and can include advertisements, news stories and editorials, books and screenplays, and even Tweets and Facebook statuses. The entity that broadcasts the mass message is referred to as a mass communicator and can include advertising marketers, journalists, bloggers, authors, and actors. The mass audience that receives the mass message includes any large group of people who may or may not have anything in common other than receiving messages from a common source. For instance, these might include readers of the sci-fi novel Hunger Games, viewers of

Anderson Cooper 360, subscribers to Time magazine, followers of George Takei on Twitter and Facebook, and followers of YouTube channels.

We are exposed to so much mass media, including simultaneous messages, that at times we may not be aware of the nature of the messages or how they are affecting or influencing us.

is even more impressive. Could a more sophisticated and long-term media strategy have helped Invisible Children to achieve longevity and avoid its dramatic spike in success and subsequent rapid decline? Did the leader’s youth, inexperience, and idealism—characteristics that fueled their passion and success, ultimately lead to their downfall? How did the mass media attention impact the fate of the Invisible Children organization? In this chapter, you will learn techniques to enable you as a media consumer to make your own judgments.

Prior to any discussion about the nature and function of mass communication and mass media, it is important to have a shared understanding of basic terminology, particularly since the terms “communication” and “media” are used in a variety of contexts to refer to a range of activities and concepts. The term “mass communication” refers to messages sent to a large audience by individuals, groups, or organizations. The vehicle through which mass messages are sent is referred to as mass media, such as newspapers, radio, broadcast television, the dramatic arts, books, and more recently the Internet.

The messages that are sent via mass media to large audiences are referred to as mass messages, and can include advertisements, news stories and editorials, books and screenplays, and even Tweets and Facebook statuses. The entity that broadcasts the mass message is referred to as a mass communicator and can include advertising marketers, journalists, bloggers, authors, and actors. The mass audience that receives the mass message includes any large group of people who may or may not have anything in common other than receiving messages from a common source. For instance, these might include readers of the sci-fi novel Hunger Games, viewers of

Anderson Cooper 360, subscribers to Time magazine, followers of George Takei on Twitter and Facebook, and followers of YouTube channels.

We are exposed to so much mass media, including simultaneous messages, that at times we may not be aware of the nature of the messages or how they are affecting or influencing us.

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