Spectator vs. Audience

By Jaxson

  • Audience

    An audience is a group of people who participate in a show or encounter a work of art, literature (in which they are called “readers”), theatre, music (in which they are called “listeners”), video games (in which they are called “players”), or academics in any medium. Audience members participate in different ways in different kinds of art; some events invite overt audience participation and others allowing only modest clapping and criticism and reception.

    Media audience studies have become a recognized part of the curriculum. Audience theory offers scholarly insight into audiences in general. These insights shape our knowledge of just how audiences affect and are affected by different forms of art. The biggest art form is the mass media. Films, video games, radio shows, software (and hardware), and other formats are affected by the audience and its reviews and recommendations.

    In the age of easy internet participation and citizen journalism, professional creators share space, and sometimes attention with the public. American journalist Jeff Jarvis said, “Give the people control of media, they will use it. The corollary: Don’t give the people control of media, and you will lose. Whenever citizens can exercise control, they will.” Tom Curley, President of the Associated Press, similarly said, “The users are deciding what the point of their engagement will be — what application, what device, what time, what place.”

  • Spectator (noun)

    One who watches an event; especially, one held outdoors.

    “The cheering spectators watched the fireworks.”

  • Audience (noun)

    A group of people within hearing; specifically, a large gathering of people listening to or watching a performance, speech, etc. from 15th c.

    “We joined the audience just as the lights went down.”

  • Audience (noun)

    Hearing; the condition or state of hearing or listening. from 14th c.

  • Audience (noun)

    A TV or radio network or program.

  • Audience (noun)

    A formal meeting with a state or religious dignitary. from 16th c.

    “She managed to get an audience with the Pope.”

  • Audience (noun)

    The readership of a book or other written publication. from 19th c.

    “”Private Eye” has a small but faithful audience.”

  • Audience (noun)

    A following. from 20th c.

    “The opera singer expanded his audience by singing songs from the shows.”

  • Audience (noun)

    An audiencia (judicial court of the Spanish empire), or the territory administered by it.

  • Audience (noun)

    the assembled spectators or listeners at a public event such as a play, film, concert, or meeting

    “he asked for questions from members of the audience”

  • Audience (noun)

    the people who watch or listen to a television or radio programme

    “the programme attracted an audience of almost twenty million”

  • Audience (noun)

    the readership of a newspaper, magazine, or book

    “the newspaper has a sophisticated audience”

  • Audience (noun)

    the people giving attention to something

    “the report deserves consideration by a much wider audience”

  • Audience (noun)

    a formal interview with a person in authority

    “he demanded an audience with the Pope”

  • Audience (noun)

    formal hearing.

Oxford Dictionary

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