Semiotics and Audiences

Introduction to media studies booklet two.



Semiotics is the study of signs, or how societies and cultures give significant meaning to things.

Media texts use there own set of codes and conventions (own language and rules) to communicate these meanings.


Roland Barthes:

Claimed all signs had two levels of meaning:

Connoted meaning= the suggested meaning (what we associate with something)

Denoted meaning= what is actually there the literal meaning.

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All media texts are created with a specific target audience or audience demographic in mind.

These target audiences could be either:

Mass= a large, wide range.

Niche= a narrow range.

For example a mass audience could be teenagers whilst a niche audience is teenagers who like heavy metal music etc.

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Mode Of Address

The way a media text speaks directly to it's target audience is called it's mode of address this involves the micro elements of mise-en-scene, camerawork, editing and sound.

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Ideology and Institutions

Values, ideas and beliefs held within a media text are called ideologies.

These ideologies however are not limited to media texts we as people have them as well (ideological beliefs and values).

Dominant ideologies are beliefs, values and ideas held within society (the mainstream beliefs of society).

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Ellen Morris


This was so helpful thank you :)



Thanks, very helpful! I'll use these words in my exam :D

Shinelle Nhyira



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