Critical approach Unit 6 – task 3

Producers have many different ways to get there media text to the audiences. The use 3 main methods…

  • Hypodermic needle model
  • Two step flow
  • Uses and gratifications

Hypodermic needle model


The hypodermic needle model is the theory that is based off of the idea of sharing ideas. Dating back to the 1920’s this theory was the first attempt to explain how mass audience might react to mass media.

It’s a model that suggests that audiences passively receive the information transmitted  via media text without any attempt on there part to process or challenge the data. An example of this is the BBC, people look to the BBC as a trustworthy source of news and they wont challenge the news that they produce as it is scene as the place to get news.

Two Step Flow 

The two step flow is a theory that suggests that audiences will follow the opinion of a “opinion leader”. An opinion leader is a person or company that people look to before they view a media text. For example this could be a film reviewer and people look towards that film reviewer to see if a film is good then they decide if they want to watch it or not.

Reception theory

In 1948 Harold laswell suggested that media texts had the following functions..

  • Surveillance
  • Correlations (suggestions from YouTube)
  • Entertainment
  • Cultural transmission

In 1974 Bulber and Kate stated that individuals might choose and and watch various media texts for the following purposes..

  • Escape from everyday problems such as personal relationships and work ect.
  • using it for emotional diversion

The receptions theory is based on the belief that the ways individuals receive and interpret a text is based on there individual circumstances(I.e Gender, class, age, culture, sexuality ect.?


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