media



The word medium comes from Latin. It has two plural forms?a Latin plural media and a normal English -s plural mediums. Trouble arises when the Latin plural is used as a singular noun in the fields of mass communications and journalism.    1
  You may have come across media used as a singular noun to refer to a particular means of communication, as in The Internet is the most exciting new media since television. Many people regard this usage as incorrect, preferring medium as the singular instead.    2
  People also use media with the definite article as a collective term to refer not to the forms of communication themselves so much as the communities and institutions behind them. In this sense, the media means something like ?the press.? Like other collective nouns, it may take a singular or plural verb depending on the intended meaning. If the point is to emphasize the multifaceted nature of the press, a plural verb may be more appropriate: The media have covered the trial in a variety of formats. Quite frequently, however, media stands as a singular noun for the aggregate of journalists and broadcasters: The media has not shown much interest in covering the trial. This development of a singular media parallels that of more established words such as data and agenda, which are also Latin plurals that have acquired a singular meaning.    3
  Remember that you can?t use the singular medium as a collective noun for the press. You can?t say No medium has shown much interest in covering the trial, which would suggest that the lack of interest is in the means of communication itself rather than in its practitioners.    4