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Media Audiences - Essay Example

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The article seeks to answer the question: What does an ethnographic approach to audience research involve? This paper sought to briefly discuss how this approach compares with other approaches to audience study and briefly outline the strengths and weaknesses of this approach in audience research…
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Media Audiences

Download file to see previous pages... Also, as with other qualitative approaches, in any one study, ethnography relies on a range of data collection methods and data sources to increase the validity of findings. A distinct feature of ethnography, however, is its reliance on participant observation – the researcher as a participant of the context being observed. The researcher is at one and the same time a researcher and participant. It is through the extensive and total immersion in a context that a participant observer is able to build a rich descriptive picture of those studied as a backdrop against which explanations can be explored (Arnould & Price 1993, pp. 24-45) When comparing all three different qualitative methodologies, each quite distinct in their procedures for data collection, interpretation and theoretical development. For example, grounded theory is ?exible in terms of data, but insists on theoretical sampling and saturation of both data and theory before theory development can be claimed. It is also a methodology particularly suited to situations that have a symbolic and, or, an interactional element to them. Consequently, it has potential for a number of research directions and contexts that go beyond consumer behavior, for example relationship marketing or even the sales situation (Brownlie, 1997, pp. 263-82). Ethnography is generally concerned with culture and power with the main forms of data generally participatory observation and interviews. Again, research agendas that focus on, for example, inter-departmental dynamics, gender issues, ethical marketing or green consumption may well bene?t from the application of an ethnographic approach. Finally phenomenology has its own unique characteristics and philosophy, which...
This study looks into ethnography as a branch of anthropology which provides scientific descriptions and interpretations of human social behavior. It is a systematic study of people that observes, through extensive fieldwork, how humans act and interact in a specific and defined culture. Ethnography is an approach to research dedicated to collecting in-depth information on social behavior in a specific context. Traditionally, culture was understood in geographic or ethnic terms. Now culture or context (the word used in this paper), can refer to a range of settings/environments where people interact. Each context will be different and complex as a result of differences in history and cultural practices, for example. A context may be a school or workplace setting, a housing estate in an inner city or a hospital and will be selected based on the purpose of the research. The complexity of each context underpins and helps to explain behavior. Audience plays a key role in determining the success of any media, program or channel. Undeniably audience stands as the backbone of any mass media. But this term has been exploited and manipulated by many researchers and theorists when they relate the actual meaning of audience in relation to define mass media and other broadcasting services. It is easily understandable that no program, channel or a media can excel without having a proper viewership or a large number of audiences. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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