The Evolution of Mass Media

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Sending a message to a large number of audiences using technology is known as mass communication. Mass media helps in connecting people and brings the globe into our glance. Mass media includes print media like newspapers, magazines, brochures and pamphlets, electronic media like radio, television, documentaries and cinema and new age digital media like ads, internet, blogs and podcast.

The history of mass media is long and complex. It stretches back beyond recorded history to the people that figured out that they could reach a larger audience through painting a picture on a cave wall rather than just telling the story to whatever group happened to be present. These distant mass communicators also used drums, smoke signals as well as sound, gesture and activity. They communicated by hitting sticks on walls and experimenting with the sound and vibration of the stick. They used folk arts (songs, tales, poetry, ballads, anecdotes, rhymes, proverbs, elaborate epics, traditional music, masquerades, dance and drama) as effective mass media.

A very primitive form of mass communication is leaflets/letters that were written from the court of kings and sent to nobles and notables and may be considered as early attempts to approach the masses through written words. The next move was to write books on matters of social life, philosophies, religion, health and scientific advancements. The hand-written books took views of writers to hundreds and thousands of people across countries.

In the late fifteenth century, a cross between a brochure and a pamphlet was dispersed among the people; the text contained highly sensationalized stories along with description of the current news events. It was in Europe that merchants distributed newsletters written by hand containing information regarding the weather, economic conditions, wars and human-interest stories. The country accredited with the creation of the first newspaper is Germany. ...
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