Marshall McLuhan’s classic work The Medium is Message has totally changed my understanding to communication, information and media. Personally, I used to think that in a communication, information or message should be the most important part. For example,it is the final winner that I really care about when watching a reality TV show, it is the cargo that I care about when shopping online, I never care about the process. In other words, I only know and care about the reason and consequence of the communication activity, why I did it and what I gained from it, but how? I did not know, and I did not care.
However, McLuhan’s theory leads me to another aspect of the whole thing. Like he has mentioned, medium contains its own independent message. For i,nstance 15 years ago I can only know what happened on the earth by watching TV news, and information I got was about things happened at least several hours ago. What about now? Leonardo DiCarprio sneezed in New York and I can find this on my social network in minutes, and guess what, I was in Beijing! The changing is obvious, but since we are in the changing, sometimes we just ignore it.
It is obvious that medium, or media in our lives, has changed the way we see things. The visibility has been expanded. In the world before the invention of telegraph, the communication of information was constricted by transportation, and that means we have limits of time and space in communication. And as we can all see, the development of technology are killing these limits, and our lives have become more and more convenient. Where are we going from now? How far can we achieve? All of these depend on the changing of medium. Since our understanding to the world is actually decided by the methods we use to look at this world, it is important to understand what these methods are and what they have done to us. “How” therefore, is an important question. What massage is being carried by medium in the Internet age and how should we interpret it would be important to our lives.