Marshall McLuhan. What a strange character. Who knew that someone as ambiguous as him could write so profoundly?
McLuhan’s, “The medium is the message”, is still influencing philosophers to this day. But what does it mean?
Basically, content that is communicated is not nearly as important as the medium through which it is communicated. For example, this controversial image of a nude woman wearing nothing but sausages (found on this website).
The meaning of this image according to McLuhan is irrelevant but the medium through which it is communicated is. To portray this nude woman wearing sausages in the living room is unusual. Moreover, when most people eat sausages, they usually aren’t naked and the sausages aren’t raw. This particular image is located on a meme website (imgur). meaning its purpose is to be communicated as humorous. Furthermore, this image was released shortly after the movie “Sausage Party”, to demonstrate the impact of this movie on the people.
However, if this image was located on pornhub.com (which I won’t hyperlink for obvious reasons) the meaning of the content would be different. It would be sexualised and aimed towards people with fetishes associated with women covered in raw sausages… ANYWAYS, I’m getting off topic.
Simply put, the medium through which a message is communicated determines how the content of that message is interpreted by the people.