A FIELD THEORY OF COMMUNICATION 207
It is the obligation of the communicator to transmit pattern. This he can do most efficiently when he feeds forward on the conscious level.
Feedback is a term that has made its way from recent technical literature to communication theory. The term "feedback" isjised to refer to any mechanism that responds to the results of its own action in its subsequent behavior. To say this in different language, feedback refers to a circular mechanism that uses input as new information in its subsequent output. Feedback is the use of incoming messages in connection with unfinished business. To use now the language that refers to the communication process between human beings, this means that the user of words looks, sees, listens, and perceives in every possible way the consequences of his own words, and uses this input as new information by which to proceed more effectively toward the accomplishment of his goal.
Feedback is a corrective circular operation, and its effectiveness is dependent upon the use of a cohesive and progressive verbal pattern.
The verbal pattern determines the kind of correction that must be made with regard to input. The communicator is adaptive to the relevant environment, but always adaptive in terms of his projected goal. The flexible use of input as new information is thus stabilized by the unity of the pattern. And movement toward the completion of the pattern as a whole is insured by the progressiveness which is inherent in the pattern. The communicator adapts favorably to improve his position, and yet he does not lose his way.