January 25, 2012

I learned a new word that best describes how my blog and I fit into a changing communication word: disintermediation. This is process of removing the middle man out of media has been interesting evolution in media and marketing. I have a blog, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google +, email and Skype accounts with a smartphone that allows me to access of these accounts anywhere and time. These modes of communication especially my blog is creating a new avenue for me not only be consumers of media but producers and shares as well.  I realized through my various reading that I am an active consumer, producer and sharer of information through this I have become a treat to major media companies. To better understand how I got to this insight, we going to start looking at the past and then bring it to the present.

 From 18th to the 23rd century

Demostration of the Printing Press

Looking at the history of how we communicate, you get to see that we have moved from meeting face-to-face to talking over the phone to interacting with each other online. This evolution also has occurred for the written word.  The freedom to write/print is also transitioning into digital realm. Blogs are like newspapers when the printing press first became a viable means of telling the masses about what was going on. Each printing press had its own style and way of informing people of what is going on before evolving into a standardized format. I believe that we are in the process of moving ourselves into the digital realm. We are removal of ourselves from the unglamorous real world into the make believe glamorous digital world. The digital realm, that includes creating a blog, a place you can be anything or anybody, you want with a voice talking to masses that are willing to listen.

Currently, impact of consuming media

First, we are going to take a look at Nick Kristof, John Battelle and Pope Benedict, reaction to how the world is communicating:

  • As a person who is avidly consuming information online I got to read about Nick Kristof. Kristof has impressive resume covering human rights crises around the world like the genocide in Darfur which he won him a Pulitzer Prize. Kristof said that “we’re moving from a format where we “proclaimed the news” to the world on a fixed schedule to one where we converse with the world on a 24/7 basis.”  This is what happens when people are actively using consume media.
  • McKinsey&Company interviewed John Battelle founder and executive chairman of Federated Media Publishing and he said that a publisher’s job is to always present new and interesting things to engage an audience. Marketers are shifting their mindset to that of being a publisher.
  • Pope Benedict XVI annual message on communication he focused on how society is spending too much time communicating and not appreciating the silence. He said that learning to communicate is learning to listen and contemplate as well as speak.


Sherry Turkle Alone Together

In her book Sherry Turkle Alone Together starts looking at robots. From its inception to assisting the creation of computers and smartphones, they have metamorphosed the communication. Turkle points out that computers brought philosophy into everyday life, in particular they turned children into philosopher (pg. ii).  To the point that we are relying on artificial intelligence to replace the human being needs. Elspeth Reeves article title Is Facebook turning us into lonely robots or worse? looks at others authors view of the ramification media especially Facebook becoming a substitute for connecting with each face to face. We are connected through the internet, a network that is with us all the time and allows for everyone to communicate with each other through computer or mobile devices.  “We the people” have created the environment which we live in today a place where “we expect more from technology and less from each other (pg. xii). Clay Shirky wrote his book, Cognitive Surplus: How Technology Makes Consumers Into Collaborators that in 2010, the global internet-connected population will cross two billion people. All things considered, that is a lot of people staying connected as they create, share and spread information. Turkle also speaks about vulnerability. Our humanness and the world we live is fragile ecosystem trying to adapt to service. Technology (cellphones, computer robots, washing machines) have made it so that we have made a way to be efficient without time and method of communication.

Turkle writes about how her daughter refuses to be her friend on Facebook but taught her how to text. For me this would be part of the reasoning behind trying to pass the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) into law. I believe that part of the problem is that a generation has been left out on how to use new technology and making the new methodology of access information work with the pre-existing laws. It is hard to adjust or govern an entity that is growing with limited regulations. Companies are slowly figuring out how to make money from advertising. The introduction of this law mimics the struggle of a coddling parent who is watching their child move out of baby/toddler stage to a preschooler and is having a hard time grasping their child is growing up. The internet is transforming the world we live in.

We are not going back to the “good old days” but moving forward. This is what my blog represents a change from the traditional to a new way expressing and sharing information. In the video clip below, Clay Shirky talks about how cellphones, Twitter and Facebook are changing the world:

The internet is an empowering tool being utilized by all, governed by no one and reaches the masses. My blog is one of many ways I get to introduce, publish and share my ideas. This is the power given to me and I am learning to use it wisely. The saying goes “wisdom comes with age”. I wonder if that is the case with the ever changing realm of communication.


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