Two-Step Flow Model - Explained
What is the Two-Step Flow Model?
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Table of ContentsWhat is the Two Step Flow Model?History of the Two-Step Flow Model?
What is the Two Step Flow Model?
The Two Step Flow Model of Mass Communication theory states that information from the media moves in two separate stages.
Stage 1: Opinion leaders receive a mass media message.
Stage 2: The opinion leader interpret the message (exerting “personal influence”) and pass that interpretation to others.
The model of communication is then:
Stimulus – Intervening Variables – Response
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History of the Two-Step Flow Model?
Elihu Katz and P. Lazarsfeld (1955) developed the model in the publication, “Personal Influence”, based upon the date collected by Bernard Berelson, Hazel Gaudet and Paul Lazarsfeld in The People's Choice (1944), a study on the process of decision-making during a Presidential election campaign.
The premise is that individual are integrated into groups within a community. Opinion leaders in the group act as catalyst for media messages - rather than everyone receiving the original message.
By receiving and transferring media messages the opinion leaders exert a certain power of influence over the others.
The key elements, however, are those of the group - not the individual opinion leader.
Relevant research includes:
- Multi-step Flow Theory
- Uses and Gratification Theory
- Play Theory
- Spiral of Silence
- Agenda Setting
- Cultivation Theory
- Dependence Theory