Two Step Flow of Communication Theory


In 1944 Paul Lazarsfeld, (1901-1976) an American Social Researcher, Bernard Berelson (1912 – 1979) and Hazel Gaudet was introduced The Two-Step Flow of Communication in the book called “The people’s choice: How the voter makes up his mind in a presidential campaign. New York: Columbia University Press”.
Theory Introduction:

The purpose of the study was focused on Presidential election Campaign and the people decision-making process towards the campaign. All three researchers were wanted to find out practically whether the mass media messages affect direct influence in voting decision among the people. Unexpectedly they found the media messages (like radio and newspapers) are very less influence then an informal, personal communication on voting behavior. Based on this researched data, The Two Step Flow Communication Theory of Mass Communication was developed by Katz and Paul Lazarsfeld.

Opinion Leader:

Opinion Leader is a leader for a certain group who gives details and information to lesser active persons in the group. In office, the managing director is an opinion leader and in public, a political leader is an opinion leader. They interpret the information to their own group. But one thing the Opinion leader is a leader only for their own group not for all.

In Public, Political leader is an opinion leader. Here few people are not influenced by the leader and their political views and thought. These people won’t support opinion leaders and isolated from the population.

Katz and Paul seems “the flow of media messages from radio and print to opinion leaders and then the leaders leads the messages to lesser active users in the population”. Through this transformation of message, the leaders may add their opinion on the actual content which may affects the low active users. In some cases the Opinion leaders are filtering the actual content ensures the information is needed by the people. Mostly the opinion leaders are selective and they pass the messages to the group.  (Low-end media users: Poor, Worker and People who are not affordable for getting information directly).

Note: The Opinion leaders have enough voice only in structured social groups not in an isolated individual in the population.


Carol watching News in ANB Channel they flash the headlines with “Research reveals some toys are leads the children’s aggressive and Violent”. That day Carol calls her little son and went for shopping and carol warn her son some toys are not good and made skin allergy which leads her son to avoid those toys.

  • Opinion leader: Mom
  • Audience: Her Son
  • Added information in actual content: Skin Allergy


-Researchers found substantial evidence that initial mass media information flows directly to people on the whole and is not relayed by opinion leaders.

-The two-step hypothesis does not adequately describe the flow of learning. Lazarsfeld and his associates in the 1940 election study were unable to determine the specific flow of influence.

– Today most of the advertising researches are based on this theory. Especially opinion leaders role in the society as well as in home to which helps to improve the market with less efforts.



2015 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 6,000 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Knowledge Gap Theory

Knowledge Gap Theory


This theory was first proposed in 1970 by Philip J Tichenor, then Associate Professor of Journalism and mass Communication, George A. Donohue, Professor of Sociology and Clarice. N Olien,  Instructor in Sociology, all three researchers in the University of Minnesota. They defined the Knowledge Gap theory, “as the infusion of mass media information into a social system increases higher socioeconomic status segments tend to acquire this information faster than lower socioeconomic status population segments so that gap in knowledge between the two tends to increase rather than decrease.”  In simple words it means, as the access to mass media increases those particular segments of population inevitable gain information faster and hence the wide gap increases with the lower economic status of the population. The world is yet to see the complete effect of the new technologies but as the globe turns out more technological and the expense rises, it more goes out of the league of the poor. As a result the knowledge gap also widens and the people of the higher economic class gain the benefits more. If the Information services are not made equal for the entire society, this gap of information will increase over the years.


In this theory knowledge is treated as any other commodity which is not distributed equally throughout the society and the people at the top of the ladder has more easy access to it. This theory was used in the presidential election and it is was seen that when a new idea invades in the society, the people of the higher strata understand it better and hence the gap expands. But, events such as debates, free talks may help to reduce this gap.

Few reasons have been stated of why this pattern of gap exist

1.    Communication Skills– As a person receives more education, his communication skill increases and hence gathering information becomes easier for him. Along with this reading, understanding mad memory skills also become better and thus he understands the issues of various spheres better.

2.    Stored information– Via classrooms, textbooks, discussions, educated person is exposed to much more topics than a less educated person and hence his awareness is more.

3.    Relevant Social Contact– A person with more education has more social integration. This helps him to counter various perspectives, diverse stories etc which makes his understanding of public issues better.

4.    Selective Exposure– An educated person knows well of how to use optimum use of a medium while on the other hand a person with no knowledge is unlikely to know it. Hence he will be less aware of the issues around the world and less interested and may not also know of how it may affect him.

5.    Media Target Markets– For every product, news or any commodity a certain segment is targeted and it is usually the higher strata of the society who is targeted and hence the lower strata remains unaware.

 Ways of Reducing the Gap

George A. Donohue and his other colleagues by the end of 1975 came up with three variables after a survey on local and national issues, which will help to reduce the gap and that failed this theory upto a certain extent.

  • Impact of local issues– It was seen that local issues that directly impacted the people had aroused more of social concern than national issues that did not have such a great impact and hence in these issues widened gap could be reduced.
  • Level of social conflict surrounding the issue– Until a communication breakdown, issues with more perceived conflict tends to grab more attention and weakening the knowledge gap hypothesis.
  • Homogeneity of the community– If it is a homogeneous community, the gap tends to be lesser than a wider heterogeneous community.

Four Theories of the Press

1-Introduction to Four Theories of the Press

We will use the Four Theories of Press to explain the different media systems. The four theories are: The Authoritarian Theory, The Libertarian Theory, Soviet-Communist Theory, and Social-Responsibility Theory.

Soviet-Communist Theory
The Soviet-Communist Theory originated from the Soviet Union from Marxist, Leninist, and Stalinist thoughts after the 17th century. Under the Soviet-Communist Theory, the state owns or in some way controls all forms of mass media directly. The media’s authority falls in the hands of a small group of party leaders. The role of the media in countries applying the Soviet-Communist Theory is to act as an instrument of the ruling party to unite people of the state, and to carry out plans of the party and state, bringing about societal change.

Also under the Soviet-Communist system, the media reports less on the bad things that happen under communism, and emphasizes the bad things that happen in democratic areas (David McHam’s Communication Law Center, undated). For example, when the Russian’s media was still under the Soviet-Communist system, the official communist paper “Pravda” portrayed the ideology that “Communist is good” by praising Stalin’s non-aggression pact with Hitler, and avoided reporting about the Chernobyl disaster as it may raise concerns about the safety of Soviet nuclear plant. Pravda reported about the incident only two days later after constant urging from Sweden. (Tiffany Gabbay, 2012)

Technically, currently, no country’s media is fully under the Soviet-Communist system. However, certain countries’ media possess characteristics of a Soviet-Communist media system. One example is the North Korean media. The North Korean media is very much- if not, entirely, controlled by the government. For a really long time, there were no independent journalists in North Korea, radio and television receivers are locked to government-specified frequencies. The media also covers up on the negative things that happen under the communist leadership, not revealing the dangers and hardships North Koreans faced. For example, the government suppressed news of a famine that affected millions of people (Committee to Protect Journalists, 2006). However, North Korea has shown signs of opening-up in recent years, and it’s media is used more to maintain societal status quo instead of bringing about changes and hence, North Korean’s media is currently leaning further towards an Authoritarian media system.

The Authoritarian Theory
Authoritarian theory is developed in the 16th and 17th century in England. The Authoritarian Theory is operationalized as strict control of content by the state and a general lack of freedom for the public to criticize state policies (Jennifer Ostini, undated). Under an Authoritarian media system, ownership of the media can be either public or private. Ownership of printing medias are mostly private, while broadcast and cinemas usually remain in the hands of the government.

The Authoritarian Theory describes the situation where states view the mass media as an instrument at all ties.  The role of the media is to mainly educate citizens, and acts as a propaganda tool for the ruling party.

The main difference between the Authoritarian theory and the Soviet-Communist Theory is that while the former allows both private and public media ownership, the latter allows strictly only public media ownership. Another difference is that while the Authoritarian medias are mainly use to maintain societal status quo, a Soviet-Communist media is often used to bring about societal  changes. (Krishnammurthy Sriramesh, undated)

In the past, the Burmese media has been under an Authoritarian system. Until 2011, the Burmese media has always portrayed itself as supportive of the country’s previous military junta. News reports gushed over generals, attacked foreign media, and remain uncritical of it’s military leadership. Journalists who wrote reports that threatened the ruling party were imprisoned. Stiff censorship regulations were in place as well, and only state-controlled newspapers, usually propaganda-filled, are allowed to publish daily. Privately run news publications published weekly rather than daily due to Myanmar’s stifling censorship requirements (Committee to Protect Journalists, 2006). However, recently, with the uprise of democracy in Myanmar and transition to a civilian government, the burmese media has been walking away from it’s extreme authoritarian approach, releasing imprisoned journalists. From June 2011, half of Myanmar’s privately owned publications were allowed to published without submitting page proofs to censors in advance. Also, the government will allow private daily newspapers from April next year (Aung Hla Tun, 2012).

Other countries whose media are practicing the Authoritarian Theory include: North Korea, China, Iran, and Saudi Arabia.

Libertarian Theory
The Libertarian Theory originally came from liberal thought in Europe from the 16th Century. The Libertarian Theory describes societies that provide media with unrestrained freedom, especially from government control, so that they are free to report a variety of views (Krishnammurthy Sriramesh, undated). There is no control or censorship. Under a libertarian media system, ownership of media is mainly private.

Under the Libertarian Theory, the media’s purpose is to inform, entertain, sell, and serve as a “watchdog”, keeping the government in check. Libertarian Theory involves some innate distrust of the role of the government and the state (Jennifer Ostini, undated), and a belief that everybody has rights to information. The theory also sees people as rational enough to decide what is good or bad and hence the press should not restrict anything. Even negative contents may provide audiences with knowledge. Libertarian thoughts are exactly the opposite of the Authoritarian Theory.

An example of a country whose media system applies the Libertarian Theory would be Finland. In 2011, the finnish press was ranked as “freest in the world” according to Freedom House, an organisation promoting freedom around the world. Freedom of expression and access to information is guaranteed under Article 12 of the constitution. Every citizen has the rights to reply and to have falsely published information corrected. Threats against journalists are rare, unlike those working under Soviet-Communist or Authoritarian media systems. Also, the internet is open and unrestricted, with around 89.4 percent of citizens having regular access in 2011 (Freedom House, 2012).

Other countries whose media apply the Libertarian Theory include: The Netherlands, and to a lesser extent, Hungary.

The Netherlands


Social-Responsibility Theory
Social Responsibility theory is an outgrowth of the Libertarian Theory. However, the Social-Responsibility Theory does not assume that anyone can use the media to publish anything like the Libertarian Theory. Instead, this theory requires the media to adhere to professional standards and codes of conduct when exercising their editorial freedom. Under the Social-Responsibility Theory, ownership of media is mostly private and practice self-regulation according to standards, codes and guiding principles. The media is relatively free of arbitrary government controls.

Under a Social-Responsible media system, the role of the media is to serve the public, and in order to do so, should remain free of government interference. The idea of this theory is that the media has  a moral obligation to provide adequate information for citizens to make informed decisions (Jennifer Ostini, undated). However, the different media can retain a liberal notion of healthy public disclosure. The media is also expected to represent the diversity of cultures they represent, and should have high standards for professionalism, truth, and accuracy.

One example of a country that practices the Social-Responsibility Theory is the United States of America. The USA has a Bill of Rights that states that the “Congress shall make no law… abridging the freedom of speech, or the press.” (Lorne W. Craner, 2008). This bill entitles the media to freedom and at the same time, put across a trust the congress has for the media to be responsible for its freedom. Such trust encourages the media to be responsible for the information it publishes.

Countries who has a Social-Responsible media system include: France, Germany, and Japan.

Uses and gratifications theory

Uses and gratifications theory (UGT) is an approach to understanding why and how people actively seek out specific media to satisfy specific needs. UGT is an audience-centered approach to understanding mass communication.[1] Diverging from other media effect theories that question “what does media do to people?”, UGT focuses on “what do people do with media?”[2


Beginning in the 1940s, researchers began seeing patterns under the perspective of the uses and gratifications theory in radio listeners.[13] Early research was concerned with topics such as children’s use of comics and the absence of newspapers during a newspaper strike. An interest in more psychological interpretations emerged during this time period.

In 1948, Lasswell introduced a four-functional interpretation of the media on a macro-sociological level. Media served the functions of surveillance, correlation, entertainment and cultural transmission for both society and individuals[14]

Stages of the theory

Uses and gratifications theory was developed from a number of prior communication theories and research conducted by fellow theorists.

Stage 1

  • In 1944 Herta Herzog began to look at the earliest forms of uses and gratifications with her work classifying the reasons why people chose specific types of media. For her study, Herzog interviewed soap opera fans and was able to identify three types of gratifications. The three gratifications categories, based on why people listened to soap operas, were emotional, wishful thinking, and learning.[15]
  • In 1970 Abraham Maslow suggested that uses and gratifications theory was an extension of the Needs and Motivation Theory. The basis for his argument was that people actively looked to satisfy their needs based on a hierarchy. These needs are organized as Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in the form of a pyramid with the largest, most fundamental needs at the base and the need for self-actualization at the tip. From the bottom-up the pyramid contains Biological/Physical, Security/Safety, Social/Belonging, Ego/Self-Respect and Self-actualization at the top.[15]
  • In 1954 Wilbur Schramm developed the fraction of selection, a formula for determining which form of mass media an individual would select. The formula helped to decide the amount of gratification an individual would expect to gain from the medium over how much effort they had to make to achieve gratification.[15]

Stage 2

  • In 1969 Jay Blumler and Denis McQuail studied the 1964 election in the United Kingdom by examining people’s motives for watching certain political programs on television. By categorizing the audience’s motives for viewing a certain program, they aimed to classify viewers according to their needs in order to understand any potential mass-media effects.[4] The audience motivations they were able to identify helped lay the groundwork for their research in 1972 and eventually uses and gratifications theory.[15]
  • In 1972 Denis McQuail, Jay Blumler and Joseph Brown suggested that the uses of different types of media could be grouped into 4 categories. The four categories were: diversion, personal relationships, personal identity and surveillance.[15]

Stage 3

  • The most recent interest surrounding Uses and Gratifications Theory is the link between the reason why media is used and the achieved gratification.[15]
  • UGT researchers are developing the theory to be more predictive and explanatory by connecting the needs, goals, benefits, and consequences of media consumption and use along with individual factors.[15]
  • Work in UGT was trailblazing because the research of Katz, Blumler, and Gurevitch built on Herzog’s research and caused a paradigm shift from how media influences people to how audiences use media, diminishing the dominance of the limited effects approach to mass media studies.[15]

Jay Blumler presented a number of interesting points, as to why Uses and Gratifications cannot measure an active audience. He stated, “The issue to be considered here is whether what has been thought about Uses and Gratifications Theory has been an article of faith and if it could now be converted into an empirical question such as: How to measure an active audience?” (Blumler, 1979). Blumler then offered suggestions about the kinds of activity the audiences were engaging with in the different types of media.

  • Utility : “Using the media to accomplish specific tasks”[72]
  • Intentionality: “Occurs when people’s prior motive determine use of media”[72]
  • Selectivity: “Audience members’ use of media reflect their existing interests”[72]
  • Imperviousness to Influence: “Refers to audience members’ constructing their own meaning from media content” [72]

25 years later, in 1972, Blumler, McQuail and Brown extended Lasswell’s four groups. These included four primary factors for which one may use the media:[73]

  • Diversion: Escape from routine and problems; an emotional release[74]
  • Personal Relationships: Social utility of information in conversation; substitution of media for companionship[75]
  • Personal Identity or Individual Psychology: Value reinforcement or reassurance; self-understanding, reality exploration[76]
  • Surveillance: Information about factors which might affect one or will help one do or accomplish something[77]

Katz, Gurevitch and Haas (1973) saw mass media as a means by which individuals connect or disconnect themselves with others. They developed 35 needs taken from the largely speculative literature on the social and psychological functions of the mass media and put them into five categories:

  • Cognitive Needs: Acquiring information, knowledge and understanding[72]
    • Media Examples: Television (news), video (how-to), movies (documentaries or based on history)
  • Affective Needs: Emotion, pleasure, feelings[72]
    • Media Examples: Movies, television (soap operas, sitcoms)
  • Personal Integrative Needs: Credibility, stability, status[72]
    • Media Examples: Video
  • Social Integrative Needs: Family and friends[72]
    • Media Examples: Internet (e-mail, instant messaging, chat rooms, social media)
  • Tension Release Needs: Escape and diversion[72]
    • Media Examples: Television, movies, video, radio, internet


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Diffusion of Innovation


Diffusion of Innovation

Definition of Diffusion of Innovation

In his comprehensive book Diffusion of Innovation, Everett Rogers defines diffusion as the process by which an innovation is communicated through certain channels over time among the members of a social system. Rogers’ definition contains four elements that are present in the diffusion of innovation process.

The four main elements are:

(1) Innovation – an idea, practices, or objects that is perceived as knew by an individual or other unit of adoption.

(2) Communication Channels – the means by which messages get from one individual to another.

(3) Time – the three time factors are:
(a) innovation-decision process
(b) relative time with which an innovation is adopted by an individual or group.
(c) innovation’s rate of adoption.

(4) Social System – a set of interrelated units that are engaged in joint problem solving to accomplish a common goal.


1.The Innovation

An innovation is an idea, practice, or object that is perceived as new by an individual or other unit of adoption

Characteristics of the innovation that relate to diffusion and adoption

1) Relative advantage is the degree to which an innovation is perceived as better than the idea it supersedes. The greater the perceived relative advantage of an innovation, the more rapid its rate of adoption will be.

2) Compatibility is the degree to which an innovation is perceived as being consistent with the existing values, past experiences, and needs of potential adopters.

3) Complexity is the degree to which an innovation is perceived as difficult to understand and use. New ideas that are simpler to understand are adopted more rapidly than innovations that require the adopter to develop new skills and understandings.

4) Trialability is the degree to which an innovation may be experimented with on a limited basis. New ideas that can be tried on installment plan will generally be adopted more quickly than innovations that are not divisible. An innovation that is trialable represents less uncertainty to the individual who is considering it for adoption, as it is possible to learn by doing.

5) Observability is the degree to which the results of an innovation are visible to others. The easier it is for individuals to see the results of an innovation, the more likely they are to adopt

  1. Communication Channels

The essence of the diffusion process is the information exchange through which one individual communicates a new idea to one or several others. At its most elementary form, the process involves

(1) An innovation,

(2) An individual or other unit of adoption that has knowledge of, or has experienced using, the innovation,

(3) Another individual or other unit that does not yet have knowledge of, or experience with, the innovation, and

(4) A communication channel connecting the two units.

A communication channel is the means by which messages get from one individual to another. The nature of the information exchange relationship between a pair of individuals determines the conditions under which a source will or will not transmit the innovation to the receiver and the effect of such a transfer. Mass Media channels are all those means of transmitting messages that involve a mass medium, such as radio, television, newspapers, and so on, which enable one or a few individuals to reach and audience of many

  1. Time

It is involved in diffusion in three ways:

  1. The innovation-decision process

The innovation-decision process by which an individual passes from first knowledge of an innovation through its adoption or rejection

the process through which an individual passes from first knowledge of an innovation, to the formation of an attitude towards the innovation, to a decision to adopt or reject, to implementation and use of the new idea, and to confirmation of this decision. We conceptualize five main steps in the innovation-decision process:

(1) knowledge,

(2) persuasion,

(3) decision,

(4) Implementation,

(5) Confirmation

Rogers defines the innovation-decision process as the “process through which an individual (or other decision making unit such as a group, society, economy, or country) passes through the innovation-decision process”.

  1. Knowledge In this stage the individual is first exposed to an innovation but lacks information about the innovation. During this stage of the process the individual has not been inspired to find more information about the innovation.
  2. Persuasion In this stage the individual is interested in the innovation and actively seeks information/detail about the innovation.
  3. Decision In this stage the individual takes the concept of the change and weighs the advantages/disadvantages of using the innovation and decides whether to adopt or reject the innovation. Due to the individualistic nature of this stage Rogers notes that it is the most difficult stage to acquire empirical evidence
  4. Implementation In this stage the individual employs the innovation to a varying degree depending on the situation. During this stage the individual determines the usefulness of the innovation and may search for further information about it.
  5. Confirmation Although the name of this stage may be misleading, in this stage the individual finalizes his/her decision to continue using the innovation and may end up using it to its fullest potential.
  1. Innovativeness “the degree to which an individual or other unit of adoption is relatively earlier in adopting new ideas than other members of a social system.”

Adopter categories, the classification of members of a social system on the basis of innovativeness, include

  1. Innovators
  2. Early adopters
  3. Early majority
  4. Late majority
  5. Laggards
  1. Innovators– First to adopt; they are willing to take risks, young, have financial lucidity, are social and have closest contact to scientific sources and interaction with other innovators
  2. Early Adopters– Second to adopt; socially forward, have highest degree of opinion leadership, slightly more discrete, interested in being established as up-to-date
  3. Early Majority– Adopt after a varying degree of time; have above average social status, contact with early adopters
  4. Late Majority– Adopt after the average member of the society; highly skeptical, have below average social status, little financial lucidity
  5. Laggards– Last to adopt; show little to no opinion leadership, have an aversion to change-agents, tend to be older, tradition-focused

III. Innovation’s rate of adoption

The Adoption Process

In his book Diffusion of Innovations, Rogers defines the diffusion process as one “which is the spread of a new idea from its source of invention or creation to its ultimate users or adopters”. Rogers differentiates the adoption process from the diffusion process in that the diffusion process occurs within society, as a group process; whereas, the adoption process is pertains to an individual. Rogers defines “the adoption process as the mental process through which an individual passes from first hearing about an innovation to final adoption”.

Five Stages of Adoption

Rogers breaks the adoption process down into five stages. Although, more or fewer stages may exist, Rogers says that “at the present time there seem to be five main functions”. The five stages are:

(1) Awareness,

(2) Interest,

(3) Evaluation,

(4) Trial, and

(5) Adoption.

In the awareness stage “the individual is exposed to the innovation but lacks complete information about it”. At the interest or information stage “the individual becomes interested in the new idea and seeks additional information about it”. At the evaluation stage the “individual mentally applies the innovation to his present and anticipated future situation, and then decides whether or not to try it”. During the trial stage “the individual makes full use of the innovation”. At the adoption stage “the individual decides to continue the full use of the innovation”.

Rejection and Discontinuance

Of course, as Rogers points out, an innovation may be rejected during any stage of the adoption process. Rogers defines rejection as a decision not to adopt an innovation. Rejection is not to be confused from discontinuance. Discontinuance is a rejection that occurs after adoption of the innovation.

Rogers synopses many of the significant research findings on discontinuance. Many “discountenances occur over a relatively short time period” and few of the “discountenances were caused by supersedence of a superior innovation replacing a previously adopted idea”. One of the most significant findings was research done by Johnson and Vandan Ban (1959):

The relatively later adopters had twice as many discountenances as the earlier adopters. Previous researchers had assumed that later adopters were relatively less innovative because they did not adopt or were relatively slow to adopt innovations. This evidence suggests the later adopters may adopt, but then discontinue at a later point in time.

Rogers identifies two types of discontinuance:

(1) Disenchantment discontinuance – a decision to reject an idea as a result of dissatisfaction with it’s performance, and

(2) Replacement discontinuance – a decision to reject an idea in order to adopt a better idea.



  1. Social System
  • “a set of interrelated units that are engaged in joint problem solving to accomplish a common goal.” (Rogers, pp.37)
  • Every system has a structure, a patterned arrangements of the units in a system.
  • “The social and communication structure of a system facilitates or impedes the diffusion of innovations in the system.” (Rogers, pp.37)
  • An important aspect of social structure is norms, which is “the established behavior patterns for the members of a social system.” (Rogers, pp.37)
  • Opinion leadership is an “individual able to influence informally other individuals’ attitudes or overt behavior in a desired way with relative frequency.” (Rogers, pp.37-38)
  • Change agent is an “individual who attempts to influence clients’ innovation-decisions in a direction that is deemed desirable by a change agency.” (Rogers, pp.38)
  • Aide “is a less than fully professional change agent who intensively contacts clients to influence their innovation-decisions.” (Rogers, pp.38)

Four main types of innovation-decisions:

  1. Optional innovation-decisions

A choice to adopt or reject a new idea made by an individual independent of the decisions from other members in the system.

  1. Collective innovation-decisions

A choice to adopt or reject a new idea made by consensus of the majority in the social system.

  1. Authority innovation-decisions

A choice to adopt or reject a new idea that is made by few individuals in a system who possess power, status, or technical expertise.

  1. A fourth type innovative-decision can be considered where it is a combination of two or more of these three types called, Contingent innovation-decisions, which are choices that are either adopted or rejected made only after a prior innovation-decision.

Consequences are “changes that occur to an individual or a social system as a result of the adoption or rejection of an innovation.” (Roger, pp.38

The New Learning about Innovation

Mark Dodgson and John Bessant in their book “Effective Innovation Policy: A New Approach” recognize that `success’ in innovation is not simply a matter of moving a resource from A to B, but “the capability on the part of the recipient to do something useful with that resource”, in other words, to innovate effectively.

Dodgson and Bessant acknowledge that innovation is not an “instantaneous event, but a time-based process involving several stages”. They have identified these stages as:

(1) Initial recognition of opportunity or need,

(2) Search,

(3) Comparison,

(4) Selection,

(5) Acquisition,

(6) Implementation, and

(7) Long-term use (involving learning and development).


The diffusion of innovation process consists of four main elements: the innovation, communication through certain channels, over time, and among the members of a social system. Research concerning the diffusion of innovation process has increased significantly the past several decades due to its’ versatility. A universality or similarity found amongst the various research studies on the diffusion of innovation process is that the adoption process or the rate of diffusion can be charted on an S-shaped curve.

Of vast importance to those in the advertising field is the innovation-decision process. Rogers defines the innovation-decision process as the process through which an individual passes from first knowledge of an innovation to forming an attitude toward the innovation, to a decision to adopt or reject, to implementation and use of the new idea, and to confirmation of this decision.

The diffusion of innovation process can be tracked on a micro level as is the case of an individual who is a targeted member of an audience, or traced at the macro level when considering economic development or technological advances. In either instance, during the course of the twentieth century the diffusion of innovation theory has proven to be versatile, universal, but most important relevant.



Amendola, Mario and Jean-Luc Gaffard (1988). The Innovative Choice. An Economic Analysis of the Dynamics of Technology. Basil Blackwell Limited.UK.

Davies, Stephen (1979). The Diffusion of Process Innovations. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.

Dodgson, Mark and John Besssant (1996). Effective Innovation Policy: A New Approach. International Thompson Business Press, London.

Elgar, Edward (1995). Economic Approaches to Innovation. Edward Elgar Publishing Limited. UK.

Gomulko, Stanislav (1971). Inventive Activity, Diffusion, and Stages of Growth. Institut of Economics, Asrhus University, Denmark.

Mansfield, Edwin (1995). Innovation, Technology and the Economy. Edward Elgar Publishing Limited. UK.

Panth, Sanjaya (1997). Technological Innovation, Industrial Evolution, and Economic Growth. Garland Publishing, Inc. New York.

Rogers, Everett M. “New Product Adoption and Diffusion”. Journal of Consumer Research. Volume 2 March 1976 pp. 290 -301.

Rogers, Everett M. (1962). Diffusion of Innovations. The Free Press. New York.

Zaltman, Gerald and Robert Duncan and Johnny Holbek (1973). Innovations and Organizations. John Wiley & Sons. New York.




  • Definitions

The word defined by different scholars in different time by various ways but some of it prints in the following phrase;

Psychologist Roger Brown defines as the symbolic operation designed to create action in other sentiments is called propaganda.

While Lasswell defined propaganda as to control the mind of the public, through spoken, written, pictorial, musical representation of the orator, writer and performer.

In simple words propaganda is a struggle to construct public estimation in support of a fastidious interest.

  • Synonyms of the term

The other terms using as synonyms for the propaganda are;

  1. “Psychological warfare”
  2. “The War of Wit”
  3. “ideological Warfare”
  4. “The Battle for Men’s Mind ”
  5. “Political Warfare”
  6. “Educational Warfare”
  7. “Religious Warfare”
  8. “Military Warfare”
    • Different kinds of Propaganda

The different kinds of propaganda are presents in the following way;

  1. Kinds from source point of view:
  • White propaganda

In this technique of propaganda the exact causes and resources of propaganda are notorious or known.

  • Black propaganda

In the black propaganda approach the activist is show as group instead of individual.

  • Gray propaganda

In this kind of tactic, the actual factors of the propaganda are hide and secret and other individual or group is working on front line.


  1. Kinds From Time point of view:
  • Tactical propaganda;

This is method use for the short term access or immediate purpose and usually applying on homogenous group in the society.

  • Strategic propaganda;

This type of technique is using for the long term objective, aims and purposes. It usually spread among heterogeneous people of the acuity.

  • Consolidation propaganda;

In this tactic the propagandist tries to disseminate messages in elite force to establish military government in the area.

  1. Kinds From Operational point of view:
  • Offensive;

According to this sort, the operator is wants to attack on the enemy by the use of propaganda.

  • Defensive;

As well as to spoil the propaganda the defender also use the technique of defensive from to safe themselves.

  1. Kinds Purpose Point of view:
  • To disseminate fear and terrier among the public
  • To encourage third force in the battle
  • To persuade individuals power.
  • To confuse the public in time of crisis
  • To harass the political leadership
    • Usage of Media in Propaganda

The Media critics and propagandist are commonly classified media of propaganda in two categories:

Slow Media: in the slow media of propaganda, the communication scholars includes all the print media such as Newspapers, books, magazines, pamphlets, handbills, posters, speeches and lectures in different shapes in different places.

Fast Media: according to the communication scholars and propagandist critics the fast media are comprises on electronic media and satellites communication.

  • ‘Propaganda Devices’
  1. Lincoln Harter and John Sullivan have enlisted 77 propaganda devices in their book titled “Propaganda Hand Book”. However, there are only seven the devices mostly used in the world and mentioned by Severin & Tankard; these are given in the following lines:
  2. Name Calling

The propagandists usually attribute a good idea with bad label through the use of this type of device. The idea of the activist is accepted as he is known as trustworthy person while spreading the label, such as “Mujahidin” in the 1980’s to 1990’s . But the US propagandists changed the label with “terrorists” and “fundamentalists” after the objectives were achieved. What may be the case, the audience accept or turn down the propaganda without examining it in the light of facts.

  1. Glittering Generality

In this technique, an acceptable label is given to a bad idea while those related to it have a disreputable past in the society. In some instances, some terrorist organisations are labeled as “freedom fighters” or dubbed as the heroes of the nation. The public accepts their slogan and they don’t confirm the realities about the person or organization.

  1. Transfer

As regards this device, ideas, thoughts, activities, individuals and groups are portrayed with a good image; for example, promoting smoking of cigarettes and showing that it improves health. However, it is extremely injurious to the health of those who accept the message.

  1. Testimonial

At times, the propagandist tries to affect an idea and person through the statement of a respectable personality. Testimonial means having some respected or hated person say something good or bad about a given idea or program or product or person, e.g appearance of famous Pakistani cricketers Shahid Afridi and Wasim Akram in Pepsi advertisements.

  1. Plain Folk

When a speaker tries to establish good relations with audience and to assert that he and his ideas are good because he or she is from their community; this is referred to as “Plain Folk” device.

In election campaigns, the politicians use the same tactic for political mileage. In other words, the politicians emphasize that, “you know me and I know you.”

  1. Card Staking

Card staking refers to the idea that the propagandist selects and uses facts or false things and illustrations as per his own free will, with an aim to portray an idea, program, person or product positively or negatively.

For instance, the TV commercials show only those people who like or appreciate a product, but the people whose opinions run counter to the first group are not shown.

  1. Bandwagon:

Sometimes the propagandist tries to convince someone that all members of the group, to which hail from, accept his idea and hence he or she should also follow it. For example, the commercial or advertisement of Pepsi says: “Dunya hy Dil Walo ki” while the Mobilink says “Jazz apna hy”, and the Zong says: “sub keh do,” etc.

Another example is that during times of war, the young men are termed the main force and portrayed as heroes of the nation etc.