Gregory Bateson and Paul Watzlawick: From the ecology of mind to the pragmatics of media ecology | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 12, Issue 3-4
  • ISSN: 1539-7785
  • E-ISSN: 2048-0717



Gregory Bateson and Paul Watzlawick provide an important contribution to the field of media ecology through their application of a systems view to the study of communication. Bateson emphasizes the concept of difference, and information as a difference that makes a difference. He also stresses the importance of negative feedback, and patterns that connect in regard to the systems view. Watzlawick explains the systems view via group theory and the theory of logical types, posits as his first axiom that one cannot not communicate, and distinguishes between different levels of communication and metacommunication, content and relationship, first and second order knowledge and reality, digital and analogical modes of communication, and symmetrical and complementary interaction, along with key concepts of confirmation, disconfirmation, and the double bind.


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