Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



From Here to Ubiquity: Critical and International Perspectives on Mobile and Ubiquitous Media

First Page


Last Page



In this chapter, Innis’ approach to ubiquitous media will be outlined. It will focus on how and why such media influence taken-for-granted thinking in a given place and time. To explain, the concept “monopoly of knowledge” is applied to two ubiquitous media of Innis’ time: the price system and printing. In the first section, some background concerning the bases of his interest in media and monopolies of knowledge is provided. In the second, what might be called Innis’ approach to ubiquitous media is presented and this, in the third section, is demonstrated through the examples of the price system and printing. In the penultimate section, his approach is loosely applied to the contemporary ubiquity of digital communications technologies. Finally, in the chapter’s conclusion, key parts of the argument presented will be summarized and Innis’ admonition against those treating such an approach as some kind of prognosticative template is underlined.