Medium is the message |

submited by
Style Pass
2023-01-25 05:30:06

"In the 1960s, the Canadian professor Marshall McLuhan talked a lot about how the arrival of television was transforming the way we see the world. He said these changes were so deep and so profound that it was hard to really see them. When he tried to distill this down into a phrase, he explained that “the medium is the message.” What he meant, I think, was that when a new technology comes along, you think of it as like a pipe – somebody pours in information at one end, and you receive it unfiltered at the other. But it’s not like that. Every time a new medium comes along—whether it’s the invention of the printed book, or TV, or Twitter—and you start to use it, it’s like you are putting on a new kind of goggles, with their own special colors and lenses. Each set of goggles you put on makes you see things differently.

So (for example) when you start to watch television, before you absorb the message of any particular TV show — whether it’s Wheel of Fortune or The Wire — you start to see the world as being shaped like television itself. That’s why McLuhan said that every time a new medium comes along — a new way for humans to communicate — it has buried in it a message. It is gently guiding us to see the world according to a new set of codes. The way information gets to you, McLuhan argued, is more important than the information itself. TV teaches you that the world is fast; that it’s about surfaces and appearances; that everything in the world is happening all at once.

Leave a Comment