Why are there no more carrier pigeons?
By the time I was old enough to learn to type or make any use of the internet, it was on its way into people’s homes and everyday lives. Despite that, it has evolved enough to not only transform news media, but create mediums and ways of spreading information which would have been inconceivable ten years ago.
While our generation represents the new age of media, technology and internet, we experience the overlap of the Black Youth Project blog, the HuffPost twitter feed, The New Yorker, and the Sunday New York Times. Each one of these news and opinion outlets gives us something vastly different.
At BYP, everything you read is editorial, each blog is one person’s opinion that is skewed and biased and unique. While we do try to provide connections and observations readers appreciate and relate to, we don’t want to be anything else. In the New Yorker, you also read a lot of opinion information. But it’s much more filtered and you could more easily get away with citing a New Yorker journalist in a term paper. Twitter is interesting because amongst people spouting the drama of their not-so-relevant social lives and indie bands announcing pop-up shows, news is being broken before any of the major news sources can even get wind.
The heads of major magazines such as People, Vogue, Rolling Stone, Esquire, and the New Yorker have teamed up last year to launch The Power of Print campaign. The first spread featured Michael Phelps and an analogy about internet and print media, claiming that just because we “learned to surf” doesn’t mean we stop swimming. To the extent that I would love to buy into this “instant coffee didn’t kill coffee” analysis, and while it may seem like consumers can soak up an inordinate amount of media, which we all certainly do, there’s also something lost in spreading ourselves thin over so many different mediums. We only have so much time each week to spend consuming information. While for many, nostalgia trumps efficiency when it comes to news, this may not prove to be practical and “the power of print” may not prevail.
In photography class, we are in awe of websites and blogs like VoiceThread that allow photographers to display their work in an interactive way with a combination of auditory descriptions and typed comments. This is more accessible than going to a photography exhibit and talking to a photographer about their work. Just like checking a twitter feed is more accessible at any given moment to update yourself on breaking news around the world than waiting until the next morning or possibly the next next morning for a newspaper feature.