Rafanan, Farrel Anthony G.
Question Chosen: How are our understandings and conceptions of culture shaped by advances in the field of information technology and mass media?
Before I discuss on further information regarding concepts of culture by advances in the field of information technology and mass media, I will define or differentiate information technology from mass media. We use the term information technology or IT to refer to an entire industry. In actuality, information technology is the use of computers and software to manage information. In some companies, this is referred to as Management Information Services (or MIS) or simply as Information Services (or IS). The information technology department of a large company would be responsible for storing information, protecting information, processing the information, transmitting the information as necessary, and later retrieving information as necessary. According to the site that I used as a source, information technology is the use of gadgets such as computers; and software like the one I am using right now which the Microsoft Word 2010. In addition, the site also says that there is a department of information technology, a very large company, is responsible for convincing and effective information, protecting information, processing the information and transmitting the information then later to receive the information. Also in my own opinion, the information technology covers computers and the internet.
So I have defined a bit the information technology, I am going to define now the meaning of mass media then later differentiate that and understand the concepts. Mass media is communication—whether written, broadcasted, or spoken—that reaches a large audience. This includes television, radio, advertising, movies, the Internet, newspapers, magazines, and so forth. Mass media is a significant force in modern culture, particularly in America. Sociologists refer to this as a mediated culture where media reflects and creates the culture. Communities and individuals are bombarded constantly with messages from a multitude of sources including TV, billboards, and magazines, to name a few. These messages promote not only products, but moods, attitudes, and a sense of what is and is not important. Mass media makes possible the concept of celebrity: without the ability of movies, magazines, and news media to reach across thousands of miles, people could not become famous. In fact, only political and business leaders, as well as the few notorious outlaws, were famous in the past. Only in recent times have actors, singers, and other social elites become celebrities or “stars.” According to another site that I read and pasted here, mass media has affected the culture of every people in the world especially in America. Despite of its influence, it still has so many advantages that it can give to the society like the concept of celebrity: without this “mass media” people could not become famous at all.
Now that I have defined each the information technology and mass media, let’s now differentiate them.
Mass media plays a crucial role in forming and reflecting public opinion, connecting the world to individuals and reproducing the self-image of society. Critiques in the early-to-mid twentieth century suggested that media weaken or delimit the individual's capacity to act autonomously — sometimes being ascribed an influence reminiscent of the telescreens of the dystopian novel 1984. Mid 20th-century empirical studies, however, suggested more moderate effects of the media. Current scholarship presents a more complex...
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