Stages of influence of mass communication on the consumer

The struck in the drum can no longer hold the roar of the drum.

Indian wisdom

As almost all researchers of mass information processes recognize, the effect of QMS coincides with three stages:

1) reinforcement of the positions, beliefs, knowledge, norms that the audience has, which results from the selective approach to the QMS itself audience

2) small conversion in these components;

3) the root, essential conversion is the dream of propagandists of all times and nations, but an extremely rare thing in reality when we talk about an individual person.

However, the state in the XX century. with amazing unanimity, forbade their citizens to have radio receivers during the Second World War (people had to hand them over). And so it was not only in Hitler's Germany or in the USSR, but also, for example, in the far from the theater of military operations of Brazil. Probably, governments acted on the principle of "baked God protects".

The mechanism of the last two stages works on long time waves (let us use this image) during the life of human generations.

It is in this process that the foundations of transformation, modernization processes in society are laid.

A lot of empirical studies of QMS and their impact on the audience allowed sociologists to express themselves on this issue quite definitely - QMS are effective where they strengthen values ​​and consolidate existing installations (in one of the works there was such an image: mass communication shows the existing predispositions as a developer - a negative), but are practically powerless when these values ​​and attitudes need to be replaced. You can recall the claims of the American society to the moral image of former President B. Klin it is in connection with the scandal, which was involved intern M. Lewinsky. Already unanimous were the QMS, condemning Clinton, but his popularity in the country, judging by polls, was higher than ever.

Within the framework of any pragmatic activity (and, of course, the activity of the QMS is such), it is natural to keep track of the price at which the result of this activity is spent. And as soon as we begin to operate with the notion "the amount of costs" required to obtain a certain result, it means that it is appropriate and timely to talk about efficiency. Here, however, there are some difficulties. Each subject of this activity has its own goals: the communicator can have one set, the publisher behind the communicator has another set. Not always coincide with them and the purpose of the audience.

There is only one way out: it is necessary to expand the way to the outcome into component parts and allocate points that can be considered as some achievement of the goal. Let's start with the initial condition that the information message is in principle accessible to a certain number of viewers, readers or listeners, depending on which information channel is involved. The further process of the impact of this message - through the mind of the perceiver - is a multifactorial and multilevel thing that requires a separate consideration.

The effectiveness of the influence of radio, television, newspapers on the public has been studied for a long time. The result of the impact of the QMS can depend on many factors:

- the choice of the viewer, the reader, the listener of the material and its perception;

- representations of the consumer about the source (trust, prestige, etc.);

- the consumer's belonging to a particular social stratum;

- the activities and opinions of the leader of the group to which the consumer belongs;

- marital status, educational and cultural level;

- the nature of the information medium itself and its content;

- the social conditions in which communication occurs.

During the history of empirical sociology of QMS, the significance of each of the above features of communication was repeatedly weighed during the experiments.

During the Second World War, when the US administration was concerned about the growing public sentiment that America, along with its allies, could easily cope with Japan's military forces still operating on the war front, the propaganda department ordered the sociologists an experiment on the credibility of the argument and its type taking into account the characteristics of the audience. Servicemen (150 people) submitted two texts: in the first (read out for 10 minutes) it was said that the war was expected to be protracted; in the second (5 minutes), it was first asserted that the end of the war was close and easy to achieve, and then this view was refuted. As a result, one who was previously convinced of a difficult war, after a one-sided "propaganda" strengthened his conviction in this. One who was convinced of the ease of ending the war, after a one-sided conviction in the opposite, also only strengthened his point of view. Bilateral representation of the situation was more effective - but only for groups with a high mental level; soldiers with a lower level of education perceived only one-sided belief.

The experiment was continued. A month later, those who changed their point of view under the influence of a bilateral belief retained their position, and those who changed their minds under the influence of one-sided propaganda " (it was this part of the experiment that allowed the researchers to go to the so-called sleeper effect, when changes in consciousness, initially unconscious by the individual, occur after some time). The situation of the experiment can not always be extended to the real life positions of the audience. In life, sociologists have to observe such radical changes in opinion much less often. In this regard, it should be said about the impact on the behavior of the individual scenes of crime and violence, which are actively demonstrated by television and cinema (in part we have already touched on this topic). It should be noted that public opinion polls have repeatedly received information that society itself is convinced of the existence of this problem.

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