The Mechanics of Media
Every message is shaped by the mechanics of media. Whether it’s a tweet, a TikTok video, a news article, or a movie, the characteristics of the medium determine how it’s made, how it’s consumed, and whether it spreads. If you understand the mechanics of media, you can more effectively communicate in a wide variety of mediums, and protect yourself from being manipulated by media.
The message is the mechanics of media
The medium is the message. This is merely to say that the personal and social consequences of any medium…results from the new scale that is introduced into our affairs….
In other words, it’s not the content of the medium we should be worried about, but the way the characteristics of that medium determine its content — the mechanics of media.
The five characteristics of media
I propose that there are five characteristics present in any medium, which determine these mechanics. These characteristics affect the creation, consumption, and distribution of media. (In other words, what message is delivered, how that message is received, and whether or not that message spreads.)
Those five characteristics are:
The mechanics of media are so complex, these characteristics naturally interact with one another. I’ll give a brief introduction of each, then show how these characteristics work in the popular mediums of podcasts, Twitter, and TikTok.
The Incentive characteristics of a medium are sources of motivation, whether money or otherwise, that shape the creation, consumption, and distribution of messages in that medium.
The creator of a piece of media is motivated by various incentives, such as money and…