If conversation is a good thing, then its absence is a bad one. The notion that media have usurped our powers of conversation is one of the stock images of how the twentieth century went bad. Perhaps the most explicit critique of modern media as destroyers of conversation was given by Harold Adams Innis in 1948.
The pathos of media-without-conversation seems here to stay; even if largely false empirically, it is a metaphor that’s too convenient to disappear any time soon. The cognitivists tell us that watching TV is an extremely complex attentive process; the ethnographers have found a variety of talkative behaviors, some outlandish, some mundane, which audiences perform in front of their sets. As a negative picture of an ideal, however, the nightmare of the aphasic audience raises the legitimate concern that the lifeworld can become spiritually or humanly hollow in an age of consumption and home entertainment. It is also the mirror image of the normative account of media and conversation. Here media stimulate conversation. Mill thought that parliament was a receiver of mass communication, and that the press would stir up and focus discussion throughout the land. In a similar spirit, the notion of the two-step flow, associated with Lazarsfeld and his disciples at Columbia, suggests that media do not ruin or distort conversation; they supplement and inform it. The media serve to stand as part for the whole in mediations on modernity. The fear of muteness is a variant on the defining twentieth-century worry about alienation.
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如果交談是一件好事物，那麼它的缺席是壞的。 媒體已經篡奪我們的交談的權力的觀念是二十的世紀如何變壞的存貨影像之一。 現代媒體的也許最明白批評在 1948 年當做交談的破壞者是哈洛德亞當 Innis 給的。
媒體的感傷－沒有－交談在這裡似乎停留； 即使相當錯誤以經驗為主地，它是一個太方便而無法隨時很快消失的隱喻。 cognitivists 告訴