Lasswell’s Model Of Communication

Theorist Harold D. Lasswell, (Businesstopia, unknown) designed a model as a means to analyze the communication process via establishing set question to be asked about each component to derive their effects.

WHO? The Communicator, Sender or Source.
This component is the control analysis.

SAYS WHAT? This looks at the content of the message.
This component is the content analysis.

This compete is the media analysis.

TO WHOM? The audience/ The receiver.
This component is the audience analysis.

WITH WHAT EFFECT? This looks at the feedback of the receiver.
This component is the effect analysis.

Here’s an example


Screen Shot 2017-10-08 at 4.26.44 PM
Bubba,Unknown, shows an offensive advertisement 



On the surface  Sony simple appear to advertising their launch on the notorious Playstation Portable coming out in a brand new colour.
However it is clear to see one we begin to actively read the advertisement Sony is saying, White is better.

Sony took to using a billboard as their medium of advertisement.

Their target audience would be people who are already gamers or tech. say individuals, however to do an advertisement of this side they could also be speaking to people who are neither and have the hopes to grab their attention with their new product to make them one of the customers.

Sony aims to hype their new release and hope that this advertisement will accomplishment this in order to generate more sales. However another effect of the advertisement were that people called Sony racist and were highly unimpressed, (Bubba, unknown.)
The effect this could leave on individuals of colour is feeling inferior as white once again is portrayed as better and stronger.

Screen Shot 2017-10-08 at 4.38.28 PM.png
This screenshot from Early, 2015, shows the step by step flow of Lasswell’s questions

A simple step by step process, however it is only unidirectional. This is a major disadvantage of the model as it does not take into account how receivers are not a passive audiences members, as one of my previous blog post mentioned, we too send messages out to the media in which they analyze and reciprocate the dominate ideology of the culture it inhabits and I turn we have an effect on the media.

Lasswells’ model is a useful tool in establishing the general process of communication via simple questions of evaluations however it is important to note that this process does not take into account the exchange of information from the receiver to the communicator.


Bubba. Unknown. Branding Beat. 12 Offensive Advertisements You Should”t Mimic Under Any Circumstance. [online] Available at: ( Accessed 8 Oct. 2017).

Bussinesstopia. Unknown. Laswell’s Communication Model. [online] Available at: ( Accessed 8 Oct. 2017)

Earl, G. 2015. Prezi. Lasswell’s Model. [online] Available at: ( Accessed 8 Oct. 2017.)

Author: xjaypattersonx

BA Film student seeking to analyze and interpret the messages of imagery which the media displays.

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