McLuhan Understood?

Share this content:
While I agree with Ruth P. Stevens' column "Post-Bubble Internet Marketing," I fear that her New York University graduate students might challenge her regarding her assertion that the Internet is a "cool" medium because it cannot create an emotional bond or tell a story as powerfully as television in the sense of Marshall McLuhan.

McLuhan's point about the "temperature" of a medium is not its emotional tug, but its "sense of high definition, or state of being well-filled with data," in McLuhan's terms.

For example, a cartoon is a cool medium (low definition) and a photograph is hot (high definition). Speech is a cool medium of low definition because so little is given and so much has to be filled in by the listener. McLuhan determined that a movie was a hot medium while TV was a cool medium, though that may have changed since the 1950s.

It has nothing to do with the emotional tug it creates or any other content, only the nature of the experience and the delivery of information.

So what is the Internet in these terms?

It gives a lot of information and also demands intense interaction with the user.

Is it cool or hot? Who cares?

As a marketer, the Internet can make me shiver and sweat at the same time. Of course, analyzing any report on a direct response campaign can often cause the same effect.

Jerry Michaud, Chief marketing officer, Memberdrive Inc., Fairfax, VA


Next Article in Digital Marketing

Sign up to our newsletters

Company of the Week

We recently were named B2B Magazine's Direct Marketing Agency of the Year, and with good reason: We make real, measureable, positive change happen for our clients. A full-service agency founded in 1974, Bader Rutter expertly helps you get the right message to the right audience at the right time through the right channels. As we engage our clients' audiences along their journey, direct marketing (email, direct mail, phone, SMS) and behavioral marketing (SEM, retargeting, contextual) channels deliver information relevant to the needs of each stage. We are experts at implementing and leveraging marketing technologies such as CRM and marketing automation in order to synchronize sales and marketing communications. Our team of architects and activators plan, execute, measure and adjust in real time to ensure the strategy is working as needed and change things if it's not.

Find out more here »

Career Center

Check out hundreds of exciting professional opportunities available on DMN's Career Center.  
Explore careers in digital marketing, sales, eCommerce, marketing communications, IT, data strategies, and much more. And don't forget to update your resume so employers can contact you privately about job opportunities.

>>Click Here

Relive the 2017 Marketing Hall of Femme

Click the image above