Who Is He?
Marshall Mcluhan helped shape modern media into what it is today. Without him, the communication field would look much different. In the early 1930, Mcluhan graduated from the University of Manitoba in western Canada and then received his graduate from Cambridge University. Early on he had ideas about media analysis. He taught as a grad student at Cambridge and found that he was “training the perception” of his students. He taught them how to see and interoperate what was going on around them. He continued teaching, and as he did so he found out about how people perceive what the see and how they learn. He became a famous media expert and teacher. He published many writings on the topic and his words of wisdom will forever be valuable in the media world.
Why Learn About Him?
Marshal Mcluhan recognized the power of mass media. Sense Gutenburg’s invention of the printing press, information has been able to be relayed to the public on a mass scale. He embraced technology that improved mass communication. Mcluhan recognized the power of the media and taught people utilize it to it’s full potential. He made communication study into what it is today. Mcluhan boldly stated that the technical medium is the most important aspect of communication. He stated in his works how necessary technology is to effectively communicate with a large audience. Although he died before the internet became widely used, his ideas are still used in online communications. Mcluhan’s beliefs and teachings are still relevant and should be studied by those hoping to have a career in communications.
Mcluhan is best know for his writings that he left with us. He wrote great works such as The Mechanical Bride, Understanding Media, and Explorations in Communication. These writings have been examined and taught by communication experts for years and they continue to be used for learning purposes. Although they were written many years ago, the ideas are still relevant to today. Communication continues to be tied to technology. Even increasingly so because of new internet technology. Although Mcluhan has passed away, his ideas are still with us. Mcluhan’s beliefs of advertising, manipulation, contemporary culture, process rather than product, and even human nature provide us with a deeper understanding of how to interpret the mass media going on around us.
“A typewriter is a means of transcribing thought, not expressing it.” Here Mcluhan explains technology’s place in mass media. Technology is a tool used for share ideas, not creating them.
“Anyone who tries to make a distinction between education and entertainment doesn’t know the first thing about either.” Mcluhan believes that you are being educated through entertainment wether you realize it or not. You are learning just as much watching television as you are reading a book. However, the academic significance may be less in one than the other.
“As technology advances, it reverses the characteristics of every situation again and again. The age of automation is going to be the age of ‘do it yourself.” Mcluhan wrote this before the age of the internet, when one can be both a producer and consumer in the same setting. His is almost making a prediction in this quote about the way he thinks media is heading. The internet is certainly a “do it yourself” media technology, so he was speaking ahead of his time.