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Communication & Mass Media

             It has been proven over time that our society today is undoubtedly a product of the media by way of newspapers, magazines, radio, billboards, movies, television commercials, as well as television programs. Media, in all its forms, inadvertently leads us through our lives, publicizing and broadcasting how we should live. Media does not only affect our behavior; though, it also affects our communication. .
             The media shows what is socially acceptable to act and look like, while it also popularizes what is socially-acceptable to talk about from family issues to politics to sex. On the other hand, though, our interpersonal communication influences the effects of the media.
             Without communication between people, new ideas and innovations through the media could not successfully impact our society. Two authors, Elihu Katz and Paul Lazarsfeld, show this connection between communication and the success of the media through their two-step flow hypothesis: .
             Certain individuals known as opinion leaders receive information from the media and pass it to their peers.The diffusion of innovation occurs when the adoption of an idea, practice, or object spreads by communication through a social system. (Littlejohn 314).
             An example of interpersonal communication affecting media outcomes was displayed in Theories of Human Communication, written by Stephen W. Littlejohn. A study, based on the 1968 institution of the South Korean family-planning program, was conducted in 1973 to gain understanding of how word of such new methods of birth control was spread. .
             They found that the village leaders intitially received their information about family planning from the mass media and family planning worker visits, but interpersonal networks turned out to be most important in the dissemination-adoption process. (Littlejohn 315).
             In this case, the village leader talked to the other women of the village personally, then those women talked about the birth control methods amongst themselves, eventually understanding the importance of such an idea.

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