All media messages have different kinds of contents intended for a particular target audience. Audience plays an important role in shaping the language of the digital message and in constructing the overall form of the digital content. Thus, the language and “…the way a message is constructed, the creative components [and techniques, and the symbols] that are used in putting it together – words, music, color, movement, camera angle and many more” (Centre for Media Literacy, n.d.) defines the format of a digital content.
The format of the message is one of the important aspects of a digital content. In order to understand different meanings of any message, it is important for learners to recognize the techniques used in communicating the message visually. For example, camera close-ups of characters convey emotions and intimacy and scary background music depicts a horror scene. Also, understanding the format of the message – in terms of its grammar, syntax, and visual language – enables the target audience to appreciate and enjoy the digital content and it helps the audience “to be less susceptible to manipulation” (Centre for Media Literacy, n.d.). Therefore, having a solid “constructed” format using appropriate language and creative visual techniques will attract the attention of the audience and impart the correct meaning of the message.
When creating a digital material, a thorough learner analysis will indicate which creative techniques and what level of the language can be used to design the format of a digital content in order to achieve the desired learning outcomes. For instance, when designing a digital material to introduce the concept of fractions to Grade 4 students, the language in the material should be simple and a creative approach like an online game or a story with visuals would make the material more engaging for young children. Therefore, creative language and techniques are recommended when designing the format of any digital material in order to attract the attention of the audience; however, learner analysis should also be considered when designing the format of the digital content.
Center for Media Literacy. (n.d.). Five Key Questions Form Foundation for Media Inquiry. Retrieved from http://www.medialit.org/reading-room/five-key-questions-form-foundation-media-inquiry