Reception analysis model states there three main types of ‘reading’ which audiences make of media content:
- The dominant reading: which is the same as the media content creators.
- The oppositional reading: which opposes the views expressed in the media
- The Negotiated reading: where people interpret media content to fit in with their own lives.
The reception analysis model is an ‘active audience’ model associated with Morley (1980) who conducted research on how several different groups of people interpreted media messages.
Audiences are polysemic
According to Morley audiences came from many different cultures and thus there were many possible ‘negotiated’ readings. He further argued that individuals had many aspects to their identities, and they interpreted media content in a variety of ways, often chopping and changing their interpretations over time.
Morley thus believed that audiences were active rather than passive and their interpretations were not always easy to predict.