Quotation by Michael J. O'Neill

In written communication, the imagination converts codes into a version of reality, and the mind reasons its way to judgments, convictions, and actions. With television, by contrast, movement, sound, and color rush experiences directly to the senses. The process moves from image to impression, to emotional impulse, and then to action. Sensation and emotional intensity dominate. The reflection and reasoning which verbal communication demand are bypassed. Another profound difference between television and writing is the way they collect and disseminate knowledge. Television absorbs the scenes within the range of its lenses, records the images, then diffuses them like a gas. It creates the illusion of reproducing life in its natural, multidimensional state. Lan guages, by contrast, convert life into artificial codes and organize them into artificial patterns.
Michael J. O'Neill (b. 1922), U.S. author, editor. The Roar of the Crowd: How Television and People Power Are Changing the World, ch. 2, Random House (1993).
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