2001 THEORY WORKBOOK
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AND GRATIFICATIONS THEORY
and Katzís uses and gratification theory suggests that media users play
an active role in choosing and using the media. Users take an active
part in the communication process and are goal oriented in their media
use. The theorist say that a media user seeks out a media source
that best fulfills the needs of the user. Uses and gratifications
assume that the user has alternate choices to satisfy their need.
Blumler J.G. & Katz, E. (1974). The uses of mass communications:
Current perspectives on gratifications research. Beverly Hills, CA:
Interpretations and Critique:
and gratifications theory takes a more humanistic approach to looking at
media use. Blumler and Katz believe that there is not merely one
way that the populace uses media. Instead, they believe there are
as many reasons for using the media, as there are media users. According
to the theory, media consumers have a free will to decide how they will
use the media and how it will effect them. Blumler and Katz values
are clearly seen by the fact that they believe that media consumers can
choose the influence media has on them as well as the idea that users choose
media alternatives merely as a means to and end. Uses and gratification
is the optimistís view of the media. The theory takes out the possibility
that the media can have an unconscience influence over our lives and how
we view the world. The idea that we simply use the media to satisfy
a given need does not seem to fully recognize the power of the media in
Uses and gratification
theory can be seen in cases such as personal music selection. We
select music not only to fit a particular mood but also in attempts
to show empowerment or other socially conscience motives. There are
many different types of music and we choose from them to fulfill a particular
Edwards, T. (1998). Lyrics to the rhythm: The uses and gratifications
of rap music for African American teenagers. Thesis (Ph.D.). Lexington,
Harwood, J. (1999). Age identification, social identity, gratifications,
and television viewing. Journal of Broadcast and Electronic Media. 43
Swanson, D.L. (1987). Gratification seeking, media exposure, and audience
interpretations: Some direction for research. Journal of Broadcast and
Electronic Media, 31 (3) 237-255.
in Eight (8) Primary Communication Theory Textbooks:
Anderson, R., & Ross, V. (1998). Questions of communication: A practical
introduction to theory (2nd ed.). New York: St. Martin's Press.
Cragan, J. F., & Shields, D.C. (1998). Understanding communication
theory: The communicative forces for human action. Boston, MA: Allyn &
Griffin, E. (2000). A first look at communication theory (4th ed.). Boston,
310 and 364
Griffin, E. (1997). A first look at communication theory (3rd ed.). New
338 and 377
Infante, D. A., Rancer, A. S., & Womack, D. F. (1997). Building communication
theory (3rd ed.). Prospect Heights, IL: Waveland Press.
Littlejohn, S. W. (1999). Theories of human communication (6th ed). Belmont,
West, R., & Turner, L. H. (2000). Introducing communication theory:
Analysis and application. Mountain View, CA: Mayfield.
Wood, J. T. (1997). Communication theories in action: An introduction.
Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.