Mass Media: A History — Course Notes

by | Nov 2, 2021 | Articles

Following are the course notes for the students of my Mass Media: A History course.

James Corbett of The Corbett Report presents Mass Media: A History, an online course examining the history of media, exploring media’s impact on society, and revealing where technological developments in media technology are taking us in the future. If you like The Corbett Report documentaries, you’ll love this detailed deep dive into one of the most important topics facing humanity in the 21st century.

For a preview of the course, please see this:



LESSON 1: The Media Conspiracy


“Mass media” – Science Daily definition

“Mass media” – The Chicago School of Media Theory definition

The Hutchins Commission on the press and mass communication

Mass media definition from Manufacturing Consent

Who said: “If You Don’t Read the Newspaper You Are Uninformed, If You Do Read the Newspaper You Are Misinformed”?

Michael Parenti: “The media may not always be able to tell us what to think…”

Thomas Jefferson: “Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper.”

Thomas Jefferson: “newspapers without a government”

LA Times bombing of 1910

YouTube shooter Nasim Aghdam’s father baffled by her violence

The Aachen Pilgrimage

International Printing Museum Tour: The Gutenberg Press

Read Strasbourg Relations online

London Gazette – History

June 1643: An Ordinance for the Regulating of Printing

Areopagitica by John Milton

London Gazette report on Waterloo

Nathan Rothschild and the Battle of Waterloo (Rothschild archive)

The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed? (Telegraph)

Rothschild and Waterloo (QFC)

Morton covers Rothschild and Waterloo

Lippmann demonstrates “telegraph news speech”

As It Happened: AP Wire Copy of the JFK Assassination

You Furnish the Legend, I’ll Furnish the Quote (Hearst quotation)

Walter Lippmann and the American Century

Harmsworth “Lord Northcliffe” / Daily Mail background

None Dare Call It Conspiracy (CFR media conspiracy)

Congressional Record January 27-February 12, 1917: Vol 54 p. 2947-2948

The False WWI Armistice Report That Fooled America


Areopagitica by John Milton [Text / Audio]

Public Opinion by Walter Lippmann [Text / Audio]

Liberty and the News by Walter Lippmann

A Free and Responsible Press by the Hutchins Commission

An Aristocracy of Critics by Stephen Bates

The Gray Lady Winked by Ashley Rindsberg

The Tyranny of Words by Stuart Chase

From Gutenberg to Google by Tom Wheeler

LESSON 2: TV As A Weapon


The Track of Brain Activity during the Observation of TV Commercials with the High-Resolution EEG Technology

Watching television: a previously unrecognized powerful trigger of λ waves

Televisions, computer screens and other such visual stimuli induce gamma waves in our brain, study shows

Turn on the TV and Bingo: You’re Brain Dead

The Responsive Chord: How Radio and TV Manipulate You, Who You Vote For, What You Buy, And How You Think

Heritage Minute: Marconi

Early “Psychological Warfare” Research and the Rockefeller Foundation

The SCARY TRUTH you haven’t heard about the CIA’s “Operation Mockingbird”

“The CIA and the Media” by Carl Bernstein

Conspiracy Theory Rock – A Banned Segment from Saturday Night Live

Digital Humanism: The Processed World of Marshall McLuhan



Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman

The Perfect Machine: Television and the Bomb by Joyce Nelson

Manufacturing Consent by Herman and Chomsky

Understanding Media by Marshall McLuhan

The Network: The Battle for the Airwaves and the Birth of the Communications Age by Scott Wooley

The Invasion from Mars by Hadley Cantril

The TV Delusion: A Psychology of Belief by Simon Day and Joanna van der Leer

LESSON 3: Caught in the Web


Meet Adam Curtis, Establishment Contrarian

Nikola Tesla Accurately Predicted the Rise of the Internet & Smart Phone in 1926

Essential McLuhan

From ARPAnet to the Internet, Web, Cloud, and Beyond: What’s Next?

40th Anniversary of the First Major TCP Internetwork Demonstration

The Secrets of Silicon Valley: What Big Tech Doesn’t Want You to Know

Address at Vision at 65” by Marshall McLuhan

NWNW Pilot episode

Now It’s Your Turn (Richard Stengel 2006)

Richard Stengel on Information Wars (2019)

An Introduction to Baudrillard

Can We Trust the Media? (Baudrillard) – 8-Bit Philosophy

What did Baudrillard think about The Matrix?

What Television Is Doing to Us – And Why


Unplugging From the Matrix – #SolutionsWatch


Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet by Yasha Levine

Ten Arguments For Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now by Jaron Lanier

Hate Inc. by Matt Taibbi

Bowling Alone by Robert Putnam

A State of Fear: How the UK Weaponized Fear by Laura Dodsworth

Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology by Neil Postman

Simulacra and Simulation by Jean Baudrillard



Become a Corbett Report member