Mass communication is not an unfamiliar word in today’s time when dissemination of information to masses ,is in vogue, following a two way communication. In a number of books and even on internet you must have come across the this word which is defined as “sharing of a piece of information to a large number of people or communication among masses”. The need for the emergence of mass communication probably arose when a need to propagate the thoughts,to a larger distance, was felt.Because when you come up with a thought into your mind you are definitely upto something and once you set your mind to do that you feel an urge to tell it to some other person and get the response, and this way the chain goes on and on.
“The thought that is not shared is stagnant”.
Various tools have been used since beginning to propagate the information among masses.Like writing letters(formal or informal),newspapers,journals, books,magazines etc. which are included in category of print media.
Then came the era of electronics when radio and television made their way through.
But all the above mentioned media were not so flexible to use for our purpose of sharing our views overtly to this world. There were many restrictions on the type of content one is writing, various policies according to which you can write anything for public…..etc. for example if you want to share any news to public in a newspaper you have to go through a long procedure of writing letter to editor and then posting it timely. Still the feedback was delayed.Above all it was never an easy task….which could engage people to participate in mass communication. Similar was the case with television and radio.
The ease with which I am writing and sharing my views with you all was not possible before. And it ha become possible with the “NEW MEDIA”. So what is new media in simpler terms?
New media as the name says,is a new arrival in the world of media for communications, along with the aid of technology.It broadly encompasses the terms like “digital device”, “internet” “convergence of media”, “multimediality”, “individuation”, and “hypermedia”. The examples of new media are not any hyper terms that you are not aware of,instead they are an important part of our day to day life. Some of them include smartphones(like android enabled mobile phones),tablets,i-pads,smart television sets(with features enabled like internet access, USB connection facility etc),google glasses, smart-watches,and other technologically advanced gadgets.
The convergence in terms of new media is the merging of information and media with technology. For example on a portable mobile phone one can share an information in the form of text as well as attach relevant audio and video along with it(multimediality).in other terms the media is converged here.
The new media has given rise to yet another popular term “ social media”. The social media is nothing but the media which enhances your interactivity and create a virtual environment for you and thereby diminishing the geographical boundaries. Today we can make our voices heard to a large audience beyond the geographical barriers with the help of new media. FACEBOOK is the most popular social networking site which connects you globally. Similarly there are blogs ,web feeds,podcasts, social bookmarking,twitter,whats app,you tube etc to enable mass communication digitally in the age of new media.
Today we all are effectively making use of this mass communication tool to share our views to the world at a click form our digital devices. It has provided us a platform to share our thoughts and knowledge without any hindrances worldwide.
Another important aspect of new media is “participatory communication” which has given rise to the term “participatory journalism”. For example, you saw any illegal practice going on in an area nearby,you can share it with people along with photographs or an audio/video clip by simply uploading it on you tube ,facebook,whats app,blogs etc. and inform people about it. Thus you contributed towards citizen journalism.
Similarly new media can be widely used to promote you products and activities to the masses. Now a days it has become much easier to create a place for your talent online. You can promote your skills by making your own website, or creating blogs, or via a facebook page….etc there are many websites for free of cost where you can add your content and become popular among masses.
In short we can say that new media has smoothened the pathway for mass communication. The word intrapersonal is seem to be overshadowed by the effective use of new media because today we want to share our views instead of keeping it to ourselves.