Entertainment Media

How and why entertainment media are important to people

entertainment media
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Entertainment diverts attention and amuses people in their leisure time. Usually, it's fun, enjoyable and pleasurable.

Entertainment is passive, such as watching movies, or active, such as playing sports. Recreation and hobbies entertain us.

Some criticize entertainment because it diverts time and resources from activities they consider meaningful.

Entertainment media deliver content that is diverting, amusing and enjoyable.

Where did entertainment come from?

Once humans were able to meet their basic needs for survival and still had extra time left over, there was a need for something to fill their spare time. That's where entertainment came in. Who has time today for entertainment?

These days about a third of our time is available for leisure activities. Do entertainment media influence how we think?

Much of the content produced for mass communication is intended to entertain. What are entertainment media?

Entertainment content is found today in media such as books, magazines and newspapers, radio and television, movies and videos, music, games, websites and others. Here's more about some of them:

Books, magazines and newspapers

Many people still find reading to be a fun activity, despite some studies that indicate otherwise. Television and radio

Television is a prominent means of receiving entertainment as well as news and advertising. In the 1940s and 1950s when film processing was slow and expensive, programs were performed and broadcast live. Magnetic tape recording of TV shows began in the late 1950s. Television networks were slow to respond to competition from cable and satellite. Cable channels had less FCC content restriction. Broadcast networks lost viewers when they were unwilling to take risks with innovative programming against cable's edgy shows. Movies, films, cinemas, videos

Whether in theaters, on television or the Internet, movies continue to be important media.

Nonfiction films, or documentaries, and fiction films, are different kinds of films.

The best-known fictional film genres are: Economics, technology and audience tastes influence filmmaking.

Moviemakers often find their stories in other media, including popular novels and TV series, stage plays and classical dramas, video games and cartoons and the Internet.

Movies, typically, have been distributed by sales and rentals: Music

Listening to music is a highly popular entertainment activity.

Music can stimulate group actions as well as alter the mood of an individual.

People use music to create their self-identities. Musical tastes define people within social groups.

Music, typically, has been distributed via airplay on radio and TV and by sales: Video, electronic and online games

A video game is an electronic entertainment form in which a player interacts with a display device.

Games are played on computers, consoles and mobile devices.

Popular games feature action and sports in which multiple players compete against each other. What should we do about entertainment media?

Entertainment is the primary reason people turn to media. Learn more:
Music and Popular Culture in America »
Film and Television Program Genres »
The Media of Mass Communication »
Books and their History »
History of Newspapers »
Brief History of Magazines »
Radio and Television History »
History of Film, Television and the Internet »
History of the World Wide Web »
New Media History »
What is Social Media? »

Resources for Courses »

© 2011 Dr. Anthony Curtis, Mass Communication Dept., University of North Carolina at Pembroke    e-mail    home page