a plural of medium.
(usually used with a plural verb) the means of communication, as radio and television, newspapers, magazines, and the Internet, that reach or influence people widely: The media are covering the speech tonight.


pertaining to or concerned with such means: a job in media research.

Nearby words

  1. medes,
  2. medevac,
  3. medfield,
  4. medfly,
  5. medford,
  6. media atropatene,
  7. media center,
  8. media event,
  9. media literacy,
  10. mediacy

Usage note

Media, like data, is the plural form of a word borrowed directly from Latin. The singular, medium, early developed the meaning “an intervening agency, means, or instrument” and was first applied to newspapers two centuries ago. In the 1920s media began to appear as a singular collective noun, sometimes with the plural medias. This singular use is now common in the fields of mass communication and advertising, but it is not frequently found outside them: The media is (or are ) not antibusiness.



noun, plural me·di·ae [mee-dee-ee] /ˈmi diˌi/.

Greek Grammar. a voiced plosive, as β, δ, γ.
Anatomy. the middle layer of an artery or lymphatic vessel.
Entomology. a longitudinal vein in the middle portion of the wing of an insect.

Origin of media

1835–45; < Late Latin (grammar sense only), noun use of feminine singular of Latin medius central, mid1




an ancient country in W Asia, S of the Caspian Sea, corresponding generally to NW Iran. Capital: Ecbatana.



noun, plural me·di·a [mee-dee-uh] /ˈmi di ə/ for 1–9, 11, me·di·ums for 1–11, 14.

a middle state or condition; mean.
something intermediate in nature or degree.
an intervening substance, as air, through which a force acts or an effect is produced.
the element that is the natural habitat of an organism.
surrounding objects, conditions, or influences; environment.
an intervening agency, means, or instrument by which something is conveyed or accomplished: Words are a medium of expression.
one of the means or channels of general communication, information, or entertainment in society, as newspapers, radio, or television.
Biology. the substance in which specimens are displayed or preserved.
Also called culture medium. Bacteriology. a liquid or solidified nutrient material suitable for the cultivation of microorganisms.
a person through whom the spirits of the dead are alleged to be able to contact the living.
Fine Arts.
  1. Painting.a liquid with which pigments are mixed.
  2. the material or technique with which an artist works: the medium of watercolor.
a size of printing paper, 18½ × 23½ inches (47 × 60 cm) in England, 18 × 23 to 19 × 25 inches (46 × 58 to 48 × 64 cm) in America.
Chiefly British. a size of drawing or writing paper, 17½ × 22 inches (44 × 56 cm).
Also called medium strip. Midland U.S. median strip.
in medium, Movies, Television. with the principal actors in the middle distance: The scene was shot in medium.


about halfway between extremes, as of degree, amount, quality, position, or size: Cook over medium heat. He is of medium height.

Origin of medium

1575–85; < Latin: the middle, noun use of neuter of medius middle. See mid1

Can be confusedmedia median medium mediums (see usage note at media1)

Usage note

7. See media1. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for media

British Dictionary definitions for media




a plural of medium
the means of communication that reach large numbers of people, such as television, newspapers, and radio


of or relating to the mass mediamedia hype


When media refers to the mass media, it is sometimes treated as a singular form, as in: the media has shown great interest in these events. Many people think this use is incorrect and that media should always be treated as a plural form: the media have shown great interest in these events

noun plural -diae (-dɪˌiː)

the middle layer of the wall of a blood or lymph vessel
one of the main veins in the wing of an insect
  1. a consonant whose articulation lies midway between that of a voiced and breathed speech sound
  2. a consonant pronounced with weak voice, as c in French second

Word Origin for media

C19: from Latin medius middle



an ancient country of SW Asia, south of the Caspian Sea: inhabited by the Medes; overthrew the Assyrian Empire in 612 bc in alliance with Babylonia; conquered by Cyrus the Great in 550 bc; corresponds to present-day NW Iran



midway between extremes; averagea medium size
(of a colour) reflecting or transmitting a moderate amount of lighta medium red Compare light 1 (def. 29), dark (def. 2)

noun plural -dia (-dɪə) or -diums

an intermediate or middle state, degree, or condition; meanthe happy medium
an intervening substance or agency for transmitting or producing an effect; vehicleair is a medium for sound
a means or agency for communicating or diffusing information, news, etc, to the publictelevision is a powerful medium
a person supposedly used as a spiritual intermediary between the dead and the living
the substance in which specimens of animals and plants are preserved or displayed
biology short for culture medium
the substance or surroundings in which an organism naturally lives or grows
  1. the category of a work of art, as determined by its materials and methods of productionthe medium of wood engraving
  2. the materials used in a work of art
any solvent in which pigments are mixed and thinned
any one of various sizes of writing or printing paper, esp 18 1/2 by 23 1/2 inches or 17 1/2 by 22 inches (small medium)
See also mediums

Word Origin for medium

C16: from Latin: neuter singular of medius middle


Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for media
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for media



n. pl. me•di•ums

Something, such as an intermediate course of action, that occupies a position or represents a condition midway between extremes.
An intervening substance through which something else is transmitted or carried on.
An agency by which something is accomplished, conveyed, or transferred.
The substance, often nutritive, in which a specific organism lives and thrives.
A culture medium.
A filtering substance, such as filter paper.


Occurring or being between two degrees, amounts, or quantities; intermediate.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for media



Plural media

A substance, such as agar, in which bacteria or other microorganisms are grown for scientific purposes.
A substance that makes possible the transfer of energy from one location to another, especially through waves. For example, matter of sufficient density can be a medium for sound waves, which transfer mechanical energy. See more at wave.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with media


see happy medium.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.