According to the reading from G.Branston & R.Staffords ‘Approaching Media Texts’ (Ch.1) in The Media Student’s Book, the word text as deriving from the word ’tissue’ in latin. I think this is very poignant. If you look at ‘text’ as a tissue, I think you can really relate it back to society itself. When I first read this definition, my mind didn’t go to muscles tissues or anything biological, but more towards paper tissues. It might sound silly, but tissues are always there. There in your home, they’re in the doctors office, they’re on planes, even KFC wraps them up and gives them to you for free as ‘hand-wipes’ (God bless them for that). That’s sort of how media and media texts are too, all in different forms, they’re there whether you need them or not. I think that the forms the media takes can be described as this thin layer, like a tissue, that engulfs society and one in which we all rely on from day to day.
Texts are the forms in which the media manifests itself essentially – we use it for a manner of things, but most basically to communicate a message of some sort.
I found Brian’s talk this week particularly interesting, I especially enjoyed talking about semiotics, and picking apart images. I think I enjoyed this mainly because I get a kick out of analysing things, especially images that are seemingly mundane. I think it’s interesting to look at how photographs are set up to communicate messages. Even the most spontaneous photo can relay an array of messages. A task I did once a few years ago, that was made to help understand the messages that images portray to us was to simply look at people’s profile pictures on Facebook and analyse how they represent themselves. It’s interesting to note that just by the way in which a person holds themselves or what is in the background, a lot about the person in revealed.
In more sophisticated forms of media, however, the layers of what a creator is trying to portray is very deep. In this modern era of technology, the media is layered with subtle messages and is supposed to speak to the subconscious mind. This is most probably more because our culture is extremely consumeristic and to sell a product our subconscious mind becomes the easiest target. Despite this, however, looking at how things were advertised towards the general public during WWI and WWII is very interesting in comparison- especially the propaganda.