“The extent of the saturation of our lives by this barrage of messages suggests that there is no longer any distinction between such representations and society itself. The centrality of media to our everyday experiences means that their cumualative impact throughout our lifetimes is overwhelming – they define and dominate our broader cultural relations, values, experiences and understanding of the world. Even in those rare moments when we are not ‘tuned-in’, our thoughts and activities are defined in relation to the myriad of previous media experiences through which our lives are constructed.” (Paul Hodkinson, p.269)

Basically as the quote states. Every aspect of our lives is in someway defined or revolved around the new capabilities of social media and interactive technology. It is in our language. It has obviously been the same whenever some new development has occurred over time, but this is to an extreme extent. It is now a necessity. People rarely operate outside these platforms now, whether socially or professionally.

Perfect examples of new media terms in our language:

  • we “google” things now.
  • we have “face time” (a feature brought by such things as the new iPhone cameras and Skype)
  • we get “fraped” (an alarming re-valuing of the concept of being ‘raped’ when your facebook page is hacked)
  • my friend who posts regular, non-consequential status updates on facebook, once stated: “I’m having a lovely chat with my man on skype”. (So much has our lives been ‘taken over’ by this that people now feel the need to state their daily affairs whilst being on certain platforms, about being on other platforms!!!!!!!) *shakes head*

Our lives are controlled by this, and obviously exposed to all aspects of media. With its new rhetoric of taking a humanistic approach to marketing communication, another worry is that everything we come into contact with is essentially another person’s point of view rather than correct facts.

“Our understanding of public issues such as those concerning politics, wars, famines or the environment, then, should be regarded as entirely dependent on layers of media representations, whether via news, documentaries, film, magazines, TV series or websites….. The notion of an unmediated truth, or reality beneath it all, according to Baudrillard, is difficault to envisage…….Our understandings of ourselves and our everyday lives, then, are as intertwined with media images as are our perceptions on the broader world.” (p.270, Paul Hodkinson)

This suggests that things like 9/11, for example, were inadvertently projected wrongly. However, the issue I have with this is that all information, on cultural & social issues anyway, are initially based on facts. The aspect the rhetoric might make it a lie is over analyzing the situation. Putting a ‘human’ spin on something allows people to understand on a greater, more empathetic level. This is especially the case when events reach the social networks and are definitely have more ‘rhetorical’ influence behind them, written from single and personally effected perspectives. Sometimes people gain more information by being able to relate to it.

What is important, however, is that they are able to access all sides of the story otherwise it is too one dimensional and therefore WOULD be false.

“The increasing saturation of the social and cultural world by media renders it more important than ever that we understand, as definitively as possible, how processes of communication work. It is equally important that such understandings be used to hold media organisations to account and ensure the operation of communications within society is such that, as far as possible, its potential to enhance lives, identities and democracies is realised more than its potential to undermine or damage them.” (p.283)

This links into the science of persuasion article, telling us to learn about communication methods, also “Edugraphology” by Victor Papanek, where he says to De-mystify the art of design, and the ever recurring ideas of designers taking responsibility more and becoming cultural agents etc etc.