Active audience

Active audience theory argues that media audiences do not just receive information passively but are actively involved, often unconsciously, in making sense of the message within their personal and social contexts. Decoding of a media message may therefore be influenced by such things as family background, beliefs, values, culture, interests, education and experiences.

Active audience theory is seen as a direct contrast to the Effects traditions, however Jenny Kitzinger argues against discounting the effect or influence media can have on an audience, acknowledging that an active audience does not mean that media effect or influence is not possible.

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