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Electronic media are media that use electronics or electromechanical energy for the end user (audience) to access the content. This is in contrast to static media (mainly print media), which today are most often created electronically, but do not require electronics to be accessed by the end user in the printed form. The primary electronic media sources familiar to the general public are video recordings, audio recordings, multimedia presentations, slide presentations, CD-ROM and online content. Most new media are in the form of digital media. However, electronic media may be in either analog electronic data or digital electronic data format.
History of development
Electronic media are ubiquitous in most of the developed world. As of 2005, there are reports of satellite receivers being present in some of the most remote and inaccessible regions of China. Electronic media devices have found their way into all parts of modern life. The term is relevant to media ecology for studying its impact compared to printed media and broadening the scope of understanding media beyond a simplistic aspect of media such as one delivery platform (e.g. the World Wide Web) aside from many other options. The term is also relevant to professional career development regarding related skill set Primary uses of electronic media:
The electronic media revolution has renewed debate about print media's relevance. In reality, both communication forms have advantages and disadvantages. Print media reporters may cover subjects with greater depth than writers of electronic media. However, electronic media's ability to break news at lightning speeds is cited as a key factor for the continuing decline of print media readership. Still, that quality often leaves analysts questioning if electronic media is speeding up the superficiality of contemporary culture.
Print Media's Advantages: Content Quality Amid growing competition from online websites and other electronic media, analysts argue that print media holds an edge through its content quality, which a professional editorial staff can produce. Newspapers have emphasized this feature in their digital subscription offerings, with a certain level of success. For example, Audit Bureau of Circulation figures showed that "The New York Times" boosted overall circulation by 73 percent from Monday through Friday—and 50 percent on Sunday—over March 2011, when it first launched digital subscriptions, according to "Politico."
Print Media's Disadvantages: Shrinking Audiences By any measure, traditional print media's audience is shrinking. As content becomes increasingly digitized—and free—readers are turning away from print publications. Peaking at just over $60 billion in 1950, total print media revenues fell to $29 billion by 2011, according to an analysis posted on The Verge website. Sharper declines occurred in 2008 and 2009, with revenues decreasing by 17.7 and 28.6 percent, respectively. The trend has forced print media outlets to make major budget cuts as they struggle to remain relevant for smaller audiences.
Electronic Media's Advantages: Immediacy Electronic media's chief advantage is its immediacy, as autocratic Middle Eastern rulers learned too late during the "Arab Spring" of 2010. Reports from satellite networks like Al Jazeera made it impossible for authoritarian regimes in Egypt and Tunisia to silence the truth, author-journalist Lawrence Pintak stated in a speech covered by Washington State University's student newspaper "The Columbian." Using mediums beyond government control, like social media networks, the younger, technically literate opposition was able to plot strategy and coordinate mass protests.
Electronic Media's Disadvantages: Superficiality The relentless stimulation of electronic media has inspired studies to determine how it affects learning. In an article for "Psychology Today," David Walsh cites a British study that found frequent Internet users only needed two seconds to decide on visiting a particular Web site. The most popular sites featured highly relevant search terms, suggesting that our brains can evaluate information at faster and faster speeds, Walsh says. However, developing these rapid fire processing skills may leave fewer resources for comprehension and retention.
- Ralph Heibutzki,"Demand Media".
- Job Requirements to Be a Print Journalist,Maria Christensen, "Demand Media".