In the Communication Theory, the mission of the receiver is to attempt to decode, or accurately perceive the information that the sender has relayed. If relating the process of learning to decoding, then a student may intentionally learn or unlearn the information that has been presented to them. Is it best in audio, kinesthetic, or visual? Is it best with humor or in debate? Is it best in a book or in a lesson? The way that a student prefers to be taught, is the same way that a receiver prefers to decode on social media. Learning is valuable when the information learnedis valuable. We value our ability to discern between relevant information. We tend to allow time to feel out the source of the teaching, its importance and the legitimacy of the informationbefore really appreciating it’s content. The term selective isimportant here because it helps to emphasize the choice that every receiver of the Communication Theory has in decoding process.
Selective in Social Media
The first choice that the receiver makes in the decoding process is it’s attention. The term selective attention applies here because the receiver chooses where it’s channel of communication exists. Which social media platform that the receiver frequents says a lot about the individual’s preferred learning style; visual, kinesthetic or auditory. If visual, they may watch YouTube, or watch TV. If kinesthetic or tactical, maybe they love dancing to music. If auditory, the individual may listen to a Podcast or audiobook. The way that they choose to receive messages, is the lead to what message they are being given and by who.
The next choice that a receiver may have in the decoding process is the perception. Here, selective perception applies to the idea that what every channel of communication is, and whoever the sender is, the receiver can choose to first, actually like them, then possibly trust their legitimacy or experience in the topic, and then take them serious. Even if the communication sender is a comedian, is he a good comedian? A likeable comedian? An experienced comedian? The receiver assesses their presentation and chooses to engage, and appreciate or to divert their attention somewhere else.
The final step in the decoding process is the selective retention. This act, is the choice in storing that information in their memory as valid or applicable to something in their own lives. Is this sender, this channel a form of joy, of therapy, of knowledge or of inspiration? Why should the receiver tell a friend or leave a comment, or tune in next week? These few seconds of assessment that the receiver has to answer these questions, will be the deciding factor on if they choose to truly decode the message.