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Introduction to Mass Media--7. The Pre-Industrial Era

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Christina Eisert

on 18 September 2012

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Transcript of Introduction to Mass Media--7. The Pre-Industrial Era

The Pre-Industrial Age Eras of
Communication Oral and Written, into Print At first, communication was point-to-point, spoken from person-to-person or to a group. Storytelling was the primary method of delivering information.

As written alphabets developed, the Manuscript Culture (handwritten) took over, but really only for the ruling or elite class. Regular people were generally illiterate and still relied on oral communication. This furthered the divide between the upper and lower classes. Oral and Written Eras in Communication Some ancient scholars argued that oral communication still held value. Socrates (470-399 B.C.E.) made his arguments through public debate. This style of inquiry, known as the Socratic Method, is still used today in college classrooms.

Socrates and his student, Plato (427-347 B.C.E.) believed that rigorous public debate and discussion was the best way to generate deep understanding of a topic and all its nuance. The printing press was invented by Johannes Gutenberg sometime around 1440. The Gutenberg Bible (also known as the 42-line Bible) was the first major book produced on a printing press anywhere in the world. It marked the start of the "Gutenberg Revolution" and the age of the printed book. The Print Revolution Thanks to Gutenberg, books became the first mass-marketed products in history. Combined three elements necessary for mass-marketing:

Machine Duplication-mechanical, rather than by hand
Rapid Duplication-ensured large quantities of product
Faster production-led to lower costs

These innovations led to an explosion of communication. Ideas were spread and traditional hierarchies were challenged. Literacy sky-rocketed. Industry supplanted subsistence-farming. The Middle Class emerged and democracy began to flourish. The Printing Press Books 5,000 years ago the Egyptians and Babylonians began to use early alphabets, drawn on wood or clay and stacked into "books."

Egyptians then began using papyrus scrolls. Parchment (stronger, animal skin) led to the first "codex" -- the first bound book, replacing cumbersome scrolls. Manuscript Culture Books were lettered, decorated and bound by hand, often by the Christian clergy (scribes.) What effects might this have had on culture? (400-1500 C.E.) Illuminated Manuscript Innovations in Printing Block Printing: developed in China, 3rd Century
Movable Type: the printing press (printed on vellum)
Linotype Machine: typewriter-style keyboard
Offset Lithography: used photographic plates (rather than metal,) allowing for cheaper color and illustrations and improving speed of production. Lowered printing costs, overall. The Birth of U.S. Publishing Who was Steven Day?

Benjamin Franklin--the first novel reprinted and sold in the colonies.

Paperbacks: 1830s
Dime Novels: 1860
Pulp Fiction: 1885 Early Magazines The first magazines appeared in 17th century France, as bookseller catalogs and notices that booksellers inserted into newspapers.

The Review: the first political magazine; London, 1704-1713
The Tatler and The Spectator: early "elite" mags, offered poetry, politics and philosophy; London, early 1700s
Gentleman's Magazine: the first to use the term "magazine" (meaning "storehouse;") London, 1731 U.S. Magazines Colonial America: without a Middle Class, the magazine industry was slow to develop and served the elite. However, it did document America's early development.

How did Ben Franklin impact the development of magazines in the colonies? Colonial magazines often simply reprinted copy from Europe, but editor Thomas Paine used his magazines to rally the colonies against British rule.

By 1776, 100 colonial magazines had come and gone. The medium took off after the American Revolution. After the American Revolution, delivery costs were high and magazine development still slow.
Still, by 1825 about 100 exist, one for almost every community. 19th Century Specialization Magazines became devoted to certain categories. Religious magazines claimed high circulation. Literary magazines published works by Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau and Mark Twain. Professional, lifestyle and other categories could be found, as well.

The first general-interest magazines also appeared in the 1800s. Other Developments of the 1800s National, Women's and Illustrated Magazines Increased literacy, along with developments in printing and rail delivery led to nationally marketed magazines.

By the mid-century, drawings, engravings, woodcuts, etc., made illustrations a major feature of magazines, including the increasingly popular women's magazines and those, like Harper's, which documented the Civil War with visual language and elaborate battlefield sketches.

Who was Sarah Josepha Hale? Early Newspapers The earliest news was oral, passed from family to family, tribe to tribe.
Julius Caesar published the earliest written news.
The printing press made newspapers as we know them possible. Colonial Newspapers and the Partisan Press The novelty and entrepreneurial stages of print happened in Europe, with the development of the printing press. "Publick Occurrences" was the first colonial newspaper, in 1690. It was banned after a single issue. WHY?

1704: first regularly published colonial newspaper.
1721: New England Current, published by James Franklin (Ben's brother.) Focused on issues of interest to ordinary people (rather than the elite.)
1733: The Journal, which took aim at the royal governor of New York. The printer was arrested for seditious libel, but a sympathetic jury who had issues with colony rule absolved him, stating that he had the right to publish criticism of government as long as it is true (a precursor to both the First Amendment and our contemporary libel laws.)
1765: Thirty newspapers operating in the colonies.
1784: First colonial daily There were two types of colonial newspapers:
Political and Commercial Their development was shaped by colonial opposition to British rule and by its eventual overthrow, as well as by the spread of commerce and the rise of political parties.
Political papers, or the Partisan Press, were sponsored by political parties and towed their line.
The Commercial press served business leaders.


From the 1700s to the 1800s, even the largest papers had circulations of less than fifteen hundred. Readership was elite and upper class. A few women ran newspapers then.
Who was Elizabeth Timothy? Who was Anna Maul Zenger? Early Advertising and Public Relations Early Advertising In 1622, ads appeared in English newspapers. By 1704, ads ran in the colonial papers. By the mid-1800s, magazines carried ads, with 80 percent of these announcing land sales, stagecoach and ship schedules, or had been placed by farm and plantation owners searching for "runaways" -- slaves who had fled for their freedom. In 3,000 B.C.E., ancient Babylonian shopkeepers hung signs of carved wood and stone. Merchants in ancient Egypt hired town criers to advertise their goods. The archeological site at Pompeii has ancient ads painted on the walls. Advertising in the 1800s Adverting trends of the time included:

Trademarks and packaging--many brands established then are still on shelves today.
Patent Medicines and Department Stores--accounted for half of the revenue generated by ad agencies.
Demand for ad space changed the ratio of copy to ads at major newspapers, from 70:30 to 50:50 (today it is about 30:70) The first ad agencies were newspaper space brokers. The first full-service, modern agency opened in 1869 in Philadelphia. Promoting social change, dictating values and regulating ads. As advertising moved through the modern era, it contributed to social change. By the early 1900s, ads were aimed at women, who controlled household spending. They often emphasized female stereotypes.

Revenue fell during and after WWII, and ads were criticized for promoting consumerism for its own sake. In response, the industry developed the Ad Council, which promoted social issues (Smokey the Bear, A mind is a terrible thing to waste, Schoolhouse Rock, this is your brain on drugs, I am an American, etc.) In the Industrial Era of the early 1900s, advertising watchdog groups came about.
In 1914 the Federal Trade Commission was born.

In the mid-century, concern developed over subliminal advertising, but research shows they are no more effective than any other ads. Early Public Relations The first PR practitioners were theatrical press agents. Who was PT Barnum? Who was Buffalo Bill?

As society transformed into the Industrial Era of the early 1900s, how did the early
railroad industry utilize public relations? To the Industrial Age From agriculture to industry, from oral and written to print communication
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