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The Whys and Ways to Use Media

How our media can—and should—be used

When we talk about using media (new, old, visual, or otherwise), it's important to first understand what media are and why media exist. So, what are media? Webster defines "medium" as "a means of effecting or conveying something." For our purposes, a medium is something that allows a message to be communicated, where previously it had been impossible.

In this sense, the answer to "why do media exist" is obvious. Any form of communication needs a medium—whether it's a human voice, an MP3 file, a video camera, or anything else. But here's a question with a less obvious answer: Why do we use a new medium over an old one, even if the old one worked (and still works) just fine? For example, why do we now use those Bluetooth earpieces instead of our cell phones (and here, I'm referring to the people that wander around the mall or the airport with earpieces, not those who use them for safety behind the wheel)? And, for that matter, why did we start using our cell phones instead of our regular ...

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