Mediakat's Blog

Part I: Narrowcasting

The early 1980s saw significant changes in communication technologies.  The computer revolution, satellite transmissions, the growth of cable television, and the reproduction of inexpensive DVDs and cassettes dramatically affected political polling, direct mail, and media buying.  Robert V. Friedenberg observed that electronic databases, bulletin boards, and blogs facilitated research and information exchanges.  The new media gave rise to new campaign strategies and “spawned an entire host of political consulting firms,” noted Friedenberg . Candidates once depended on local newspapers and face-to-face voter canvassing to present targeted messages to potential voters, but now mass communication via radio and television permitted candidates to disseminate either, general messages or, with careful attention to media buying, tailor a message for a selective time slot in the hopes of reaching a particular audience.  With cable television, candidates could now supplement broadcast network advertising with the lower costing cable rates.  Most importantly, cable…

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