Meaning of information transmission

Information is commonly defined as knowledge passed from one person to another. The person who gives the information is known as the informant, while the person who receives the information is the recipient. Information transmission, also called information distribution, refers to the process of communicating information.

Methods of Transmitting Information

There are two primary methods of transmitting information: ancient and modern methods.

Ancient methods of transmitting information

There were various methods employed by our ancestors to transmit information in ancient times. These methods include

Drumming as a Means of Communication

In many African communities, the beating of drums was a vital way of conveying messages from one person to another. The sound of the drum was used to transmit important information such as news of a birth, marriage, or death, the arrival of an important visitor, or the announcement of a community festival or celebration. In some cases, specific drums were beaten to convey certain messages, and people could decipher the meaning of the message based on the rhythm and tone of the drum. For example, happy messages were usually accompanied by fast, upbeat drumming, while sad messages were communicated through slow, mournful beats.

The approach of war was also communicated through drumming, with a specific type of sound used to signal danger and the need for preparedness. In the Yoruba part of Nigeria, the drums were beaten in a way that imitated spoken language, with each drumbeat representing a different word. This allowed for more complex messages to be transmitted over long distances.

Meaning of Information Transmission

Town Criers and Messengers

In ancient times, kings and rulers would often send messengers or town criers to communicate important information to the people. These messengers would carry bells or gongs to help them make announcements and often shout to get people’s attention. They would inform people about upcoming events such as festivals, ceremonies, or important meetings.

Meaning of Information Transmission

Face-to-Face Communication

In the past, oral communication or face-to-face communication was the most common way of transmitting information. People would convey messages through word of mouth, passing along news and information to their friends and family members.

Meaning of Information Transmission

Bush Burning or Fire Lighting

Another way of communicating important information was through the use of bush burning or fire lighting. People would light fires to alert others in the area about impending danger, and the smoke from the fire could be used to trace the location of the danger.

Meaning of Information Transmission

Making Representations

In ancient times, people used various means to represent and transmit information. Farmers and traders would use pebbles to indicate the prices of their goods, while charcoal was used to make marks on walls or tree barks to convey messages. In some cases, people would use palm fronds to show signs, while others used hieroglyphic symbols to record their stories and history.

Drawing Diagrams and Symbols

People would also draw diagrams and symbols to record the passage of time, debts owed, or other important information. These drawings were often made on walls or tree barks and could take the form of carvings or engravings on rocks. The ancient Egyptians, for example, used hieroglyphs to record everyday things, as well as to tell stories and convey historical information. Today, we still use various symbols and signs to convey important messages, such as road signs and symbols for hospitals, schools, and other public places

Modern Methods Of Information Transmission

With the advent of civilization, traditional methods of information transmission have given way to modern methods. Today, we can communicate with people without the need for face-to-face interaction. Modern methods of information transmission include:


In the modern age, information is frequently transmitted through writing. This can be done by handwriting, typing or using a computer to produce documents, such as letters, reports, and other forms of written communication. Written documents can be easily duplicated, stored and transported.

Meaning of Information Transmission


This involves using printing devices to produce text and images on paper for distribution to others. Printed materials such as newspapers, magazines, textbooks, and other publications are easier to read and more durable than handwritten documents.


The telephone is a popular means of transmitting voice information over short and long distances. The device converts sound signals into a form that can be transmitted over a distance and received at the other end. It is an essential tool for businesses, institutions, households, and governments.


A facsimile machine, or fax for short, is used to transmit text and graphics in image form. It works like a photocopying machine, transferring a copy of a document over radio or telephone lines.

Meaning of Information Transmission


This equipment transmits information in the form of both voice and images to a group of people. The visual images transmitted by TV assist human memory and make lasting impressions on the human mind, aiding recollection and retention.


Satellites are used for broadcasting radio and TV signals, and they transmit information into space, making it available for other satellites.


This is a network of computer networks that enables the exchange of information between users. Email is one of the services available on the internet.


(Global System for Mobile Communications): GSM technology is used to make phone calls, send text messages (SMS), and access the internet without the use of telephone cables.


This is a text transmission facility that offers the transmission of textual information through a teleprinter.

Meaning of Information Transmission


The radio is a wireless device used for the transmission of signals by modulation of electromagnetic waves with frequencies. It is used to broadcast voice information to a group of people.


Email is used to transmit information over computer networks. Information is stored as computer files and can be accessed by various users. It is an effective means of communication and a popular alternative to traditional mail.

Social Media

Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn allow users to create, share, and exchange information and ideas with people around the world. Social media is a powerful tool for networking, marketing, and staying up-to-date on current events.

Video Conferencing

Video conferencing is a way of holding meetings or communicating with others remotely using video and audio technologies. With video conferencing, people can participate in meetings, interviews, and other important conversations without needing to be in the same physical location.


Podcasts are digital audio recordings that can be downloaded and listened to on demand. They are a popular way to share information, ideas, and stories with listeners around the world. Podcasts can be educational, entertaining, or both, and cover a wide range of topics.

Meaning of Information Transmission

Instant Messaging

Instant messaging is a way of exchanging messages in real time over the internet. Applications like WhatsApp, Telegram, and Facebook Messenger allow users to chat with each other, share files, and make voice or video calls. Instant messaging is a convenient way to communicate with others quickly and easily, no matter where they are in the world.

Advantages of Modern Methods of Information Transmission

  1. Modern modes of communication are quicker and more dependable, allowing messages to be sent or received within seconds.
  2. Furthermore, larger quantities of information can be conveyed over longer durations of time, thanks to modern technology.
  3. Sharing information is much easier using contemporary communication methods, making collaboration and dissemination of knowledge more accessible.
  4. Physical distance no longer poses a challenge with the aid of modern communication tools.
  5. Information is readily available on the internet, and can be found in a matter of seconds, eliminating the need to spend hours searching through books or other sources.
  6. The exchange of thoughts and ideas can be rapidly shared, and immediate feedback can be obtained, aiding in the development of a specific topic or project.
  7. In addition, using modern means of communication significantly reduces expenses, effort, and time, making communication more convenient and efficient.
  8. Communication can be done at any time, day or night, making it more convenient for people with different schedules and time zones.
  9. With the ability to communicate across borders and cultures, people can learn and share information from different parts of the world, fostering greater understanding and cooperation.
  10. Modern means of communication have also revolutionized the way we do business, enabling companies to conduct transactions, meetings and negotiations remotely, cutting down on travel costs and time.
  11. Social media platforms have made it easier for people to connect and share information with friends, family, and acquaintances regardless of their location.
  12. Video conferencing has made it possible for people to have face-to-face conversations even when they are not in the same physical location, enhancing the quality of communication and reducing the need for travel.

Disadvantages of Modern Methods of Information Transmission

  1. It is widely acknowledged that interpersonal relationships can be strengthened through face-to-face communication.
  2. It is imperative to recognise that excessive usage, inappropriate utilisation and addiction may arise from the use of advanced technologies.
  3. The security of modern communication methods is at risk, as data can be tampered with, manipulated or hacked, while viruses may also be transmitted, which could potentially cause more harm than benefit.
  4. With the rapid sharing of information on social media, there is a growing concern about the spread of false information. The absence of regulation and review mechanisms before posting on social media facilitates the spread of misinformation, making it faster and more extensive than the traditional media
  5. While electronic communication has made it easier to connect with others over long distances, it may also have a negative impact on people’s ability to engage in face-to-face interactions and build meaningful relationships.
  6. In today’s hyper-connected world, it is crucial to strike a balance between virtual communication and physical interactions. Failing to do so could lead to social isolation and other negative consequences.
  7. The use of technology in communication can also contribute to a lack of privacy, as personal information may be inadvertently shared or accessed by others.
  8. The prevalence of social media and other electronic communication platforms has created new challenges related to online etiquette and appropriate behaviour, such as cyberbullying and harassment.
  9. Electronic communication has also changed the way we interpret nonverbal cues, such as facial expressions and body language, which are essential for effective communication.
  10. The use of electronic communication can also lead to a sense of constant connectivity and the expectation of immediate responses, which can cause stress and anxiety for some people.
  11. Electronic communication has also revolutionized the workplace, allowing for more flexible work arrangements and remote work options, but it has also blurred the boundaries between work and personal life.
  12. As technology continues to evolve, it is important to consider its impact on communication and society as a whole and to develop strategies for responsible and effective use.

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