Allowing for Many Readings and Many Writers

The growth of media from paper to the various sources of our current media world changes the way people interact with media. The change in interaction has happened gradually and then all of a sudden there was rapid change. The change from paper to e-books represents an influential change. This change has allowed for more people to self-publish, but has lowered the amount of money that some may make as authors and publishers. E-books have allowed for a larger amount of people to publish, while this is a positive change for the fact that more people can express their creative juices, it also floods the market with similar books, some that may claim facts, but in turn are not factual. Although the article argues that the change in books to e-books is different than the change in music, it could be seen as similar. For instance, when music started to thrive on the internet more musicians became well-known. A key example of this is Justin Bieber, he is like the E.L. James of music, found through youtube and made famous after that. The change in books to e-books, will not be significant on the paper book world. This is due to the fact that so many people prefer hand held books, as mentioned in the article on regarding paper books. The article says that the book is the perfect tool, easy to read and never fails. Until electronics such as Kindles can achieve all the qualities of books many will still choose books over e-books. Personally, even though I work in social media and web design I still prefer paper books. I go back to music, thinking of my friend Doria, an amazing musician with a lot to say. She fought to be released from her contract, knowing that she could do more as a self-produced musician. Now her past all love songs are intermixed with protest music. While the new used of media not only allows for more people to be part of writing world, it also allows for writers (or musicians) who have more to say to say it.

The change in media goes beyond the sources and technology people use to view media, but also in the discussions that surround media and the way media is used. While media has changed, one question has remained the same in the study of media, “does the meaning of media come from the media itself or does the audience create the meaning of the media?” One of the arguments used in Media studies is that the terms signifier or “sound image” and signified or “concept” are suggested by Saussure to be arbitrary. Semiology, popularized in the 1960s, as Saussure explained is related to how meaning is generated in “texts,” allowing to view cultures and therefore pieces of cultures as text. Media, argued in Semiology, is polysemic meaning that it holds multiple interpretations and it opened to various readings. The arguments in Semiology answers the question of meaning and media. Through the use of Semiology, it becomes clear that there are many aspects to the viewing of media. While reading this, I was watching Wall-e, a children’s film that not only shows off new technology, but also is signified to be a film that warns of the future of issues that currently are happening in America. This is a prime example of the use of polysemic meanings in media. Media at times seems to forget the intelligence of its audience, for example how can two different news outlets tell two different stories using the same “facts?” A question I’ll never be able to answer, but one likely answered through polysemic readings.


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