Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:February 7th, 2008 18:20 EST
Media is the Masses: Cultural Media

Media is the Masses: Cultural Media

By Sean Stubblefield

When we use the word "media", we generally & typically refer to common, public methods or channels of information relay... such as newspapers, TV, radio and Internet.

Media are/is "the means of communication that reach or influence people widely".

It is the plural form of "medium", which is defined as:

-something intermediate in nature or degree.

-an intervening substance through which a force acts or an effect is produced.

-surrounding objects, conditions, or influences; environment.

-an intervening agency, means, or instrument by which something is conveyed or accomplished.

-the material or technique with which an artist works.

And yes...

-one of the means of general communication, information, or entertainment in society (i.e.- newspapers, radio, television).


A medium is the platform or framework in/on which a message is conveyed or depicted.

Considering these definitions, culture is a form of media... indeed, is a medium.

Perhaps this is merely stating the obvious, but it is precisely the obvious which is often least apparent and most overlooked. But no less true for being obvious or stated.

A culture acts as an intermediate conduit or liaison between individuals/groups and through which they interact, creates or consists of social/societal environments, is an instrument that conveys information, and is both material and technique for creating behaviors and attitudes. A culture can be comprised of multiple cultures, as a medium could have within it other cultures... both/either part of it or distinct from it. A nation, a role playing group, a sci-fi convention, a place of employment, a home, a restaurant or store, a secret society... each of these not only have a particular culture, but are a culture. Perhaps even being elements of other cultures or parts of a larger collective culture.

They all function as and provide socio-environmental mediums in which and by which participants interact and coalesce with each other.

Culture can be perceived in and as a social atmosphere, ambience or attitude.

Not only is it a medium, but also a composite of messages.
Culture is self-referential and self-sustaining. A means of general communication and information about itself- compiled of messages about ourselves, from as small a unit as a family or a few friends to as large a unit as a Federation of Planets. It is shared customs, routines, rules, beliefs and history that connect, confer and construct through commonality in community.
Note the similarities of the words "communicate", "commune" and "community". That is no coincidence.

What`s the point? Why am I telling you this? Maybe you`ll be more aware and careful of the many textual, contextual and sub-textual messages flying through the ether. Especially the ones coming to and from you. So that we can hopefully better identify, mediate and process these varied messages, knowing that they are being sent and through what channels.

Currently based in Houston Texas, Sean Stubblefield graduated Sam Houston State University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Television Production. A philosopher poet, Stubblefield has been writing non-fiction for 15 years, and has penned eight books to date. His first book, Paradox: A Journey Inside Out is available today at

For More Information:` target=_new>