“The Medium is the Message”


Hi guys, this week has been insane, the post you’re about to read took me 4 days to compose due to my zero logic on the topic discussed.

The concept of “The Medium is the Message” is slightly simple but can be hard to wrap your head around at first. Marshall McLuhan, popularly known for the creation of the enigmatic paradox “The Medium is the Message” and has become the most relevant phrase in relation to the change in media today.

Marshall McLuhan describes the Medium as; “any extension of ourselves” (the ability to do more than our bodies can eg. Internet, mobile phones, laptops etc. in relation to present times) and the Message as; “a change of scale of pace” when new innovations and technologies “introduce themselves to human affairs” (the continuous evolution of technology within society).

In simplest terms, the paradox can be easily broken down using a generalised example. An article printed in a newspaper, only allows you to read it word by word, left to right and develop its message based on the black and white lines and what’s being said. Let’s say it was available on radio or podcast, this allows us to listen and take in what is being said but limits our understanding of the messages trying to be conveyed by the writer. But if we were to view the article on the internet or smartphone, there are more possibilities to interact with its messages. Images, fonts and comments can be viewed, allowing us to build a greater understanding and receive a visible message from the article.

Giving the impression from the above example, McLuhan’s “theory” on the Medium, shows that although newspapers and radios are phased out or slightly used still, the internet has enabled them to become embedded together in one place. This makes it easier for individuals to access the messages conveyed by the medium (article). Therefore, since we as the reader change the Medium (the platform on which we view the article) our interaction with the message changes which then, changes the message itself.

Well there you have it, I’m hoping you readers were able to grasp the concept of the topic and gain some knowledge because I did…sure. Leave a comment below or get in touch via social media (tabs on the right).

That’s all from me! – Lachy.


Click to access MeaningTheMediumistheMessage.pdf

6 thoughts on ““The Medium is the Message”

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  1. Hi Lachy,
    Just want to say how well written this is. It took me a little while to understand the concept and get a clutch on the idea of how the medium is the message. But the way you have broken the idea down really helped me understand the meaning behind it. Really good examples, very clear and to the point, great work 🙂



  2. It may have taken you four days to finish this blogpost, but that does not change the fact that it is extremely well composed! You have done a really good job of breaking down the concept into simpler terms and providing relevant examples, making it more understandable for your audience.The colloquial style of your writing is refreshing and engaging for an audience that may not have necessarily come across this theory before. I would love to know your opinion on McLuhan’s theory – and whether or not you think that it applies in all contexts!
    I look forward to reading more of your blogposts,
    Chloe 🙂


    1. Thanks so much Chloe! I’m glad you were able to really understand where I was coming from haha! Thank you for your kind words and appreciation and I look forward to reading your perspective also!
      – Lachy.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey Lachy, a very well-written post! Definitely can see the four-day effort that went into developing a greater understanding of ‘The Medium is the Message’. I also appreciate that you went to the effort of comparing and contrasting examples of newspapers, radio and internet-connected devices to one another as individual mediums; it drive the point home the it is no longer so much about the message as it is the medium. Personally I found this week’s topic hard to wrap my head around too – however I found it quite interesting as I started thinking about all the mediums we are surrounded by and how they become the messages themselves that influence our lives – for example, the way we interact with a lecture hall or classroom as a medium. We no longer are passive consumers but are actively contributing to the conversation, whether that be using our voices to offer our opinions or using the internet to tweet our questions and concerns (also both mediums). You can check out what I thought at https://claudialouisemuller.wordpress.com/2016/03/11/welcome-to-meme-time/

    Overall though, loved this post, keep it up!


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