Production studies is a term that developed during the rediscovery of the mass communication. In the 1970s, some social and political scholars focused on the mass communicator and their organization and industries. In the decades since this era of rediscovery, substantial research effort has been devoted to understanding how professional mass communicators, their organizations, and industries produce media content and, thereby, produce a sociopolitical impact of some sort. (Whitney & Ettema, 2003)
Production studies is important for different groups of individuals, especially journalists. Its importance is derived from the fact that it is composed from a lot of techniques that need to be analyzed to fit the intended audiences (Davies, 2018). This means that each technique applied by a journalist will impact a reader or an audience in a positive or negative way. For example, the introduction part of a story on a newspaper will determine whether a reader will read the whole newspaper or not. Production studies enable individuals to understand new rules and regulations in the industry (Davies, 2018). The continuous changes in technology have highly impacted production studies. For example, newspapers are not read as much as they were read before. Through production studies, all these changes and how they impact the audiences are understood. Production studies analyze the rules for each type of media (Davies, 2018). For example, there are rules for television as well as newspapers. It is also important that journalists understand the type of audiences that they deal with and how they are impacted by the different forms of media. For example, children prefer the use of television as opposed to the use of newspapers.
Production studies can be analyzed under three different levels. It can be analyzed under individual level (Whitney & Ettema, 2003). In production, each individual is tasked with a specific responsibility that must be accomplished before production is complete. For example, if a journalist practices biasness in an article, the editor will have to cut off such an article. The attitudes of individuals play an important role in ensuring effective production. Production studies can be analyzed at the organizational level (Whitney & Ettema, 2003). An organization must develop effective communication strategies that are aimed at doing away with factors such as biasness. For example, an editor must have the ability to choose the best articles that would be published on a newspaper. An organization must ensure that the production team performs highly so that the audience is impressed. Production studies can also be analyzed at the institution level (Whitney & Ettema, 2003). In this case, an institution can refer to a society or the economy. The work of production companies must be in line with the goals of the economy. It means that a production company cannot function effectively if its goals are against those that are set by the economy.
The audience is the most important aspect in production studies. Failure to consider the audience renders these studies irrelevant and of no use to the production comapnies. Interpretation of information is one factor that links audiences to production (Mayer, 2016). In the production of a newspaper article, there are different targeted audiences such as children, women, housewives, and the working population among others. A production company has the duty of ensuring all these audiences are taken care of. For example, there must be an article on how workers’ rights have been denied in a country and ways of solving the problem. Therefore, the audiences and the production companies are important in this industry. Communication between the audiences and production companies can go a long way in improving the content that is displayed to the public (Mayer, 2016). The audience can show their dissatisfaction at a newspaper article and require a production company to revisit a given story. The production company can ask the audiences to suggest interesting topics that it should write about in the next issue. Production companies must sort all these audiences by ensuring that they receive all kinds of information irrespective of their location or knowledge.
Davies, M., M. (2018). Production studies. Critical Studies in Television 1(1).
Mayer, V. (2016). The places where audience studies and production studies meet. Television and New Media 17(8); 706-718.
Whitney, C., & Ettema, J., S. (2003). Media production: individuals, organizations, institutions. New Jersey: Blackwell Publishing.
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Written by Jingjia Zhang, 2018