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access


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1. (accessibility) General availability for use: e.g. the percentage of a given population owning or having access to a communications medium/technology. This was a key issue for Cooley in 1909; policy-makers have argued that public service broadcasting or the internet should be universally available (see Reithianism). Both social factors and the affordances or biases of particular communication technologies can have implications for access. See also circulation; diffusion; digital divide; global village; primary and secondary definers; reach.

2. (accessibility) The availability of information. See information flow.

3. (access television) In pay-TV, a special timeslot or channel devoted to non-commercial use. See also community broadcasting.

4. (accessibility) (semiotics) The extent to which the codes employed in texts and communicative practices are available to those interpreting them. See also aberrant decoding; broadcast codes; encoding/decoding model; interpretive repertoire; narrowcast codes; symbolic capital.

5.v. To extract data from a computer.

Subjects: Media Studies.


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