For the first time in history, we are not merely subjected to culture and must endure monumental resistance to change. We can now interact with and create personal culture.
Of course, that can be a bitch.
My weekly musings on the electronic culture we’ve been living in for the past hundred years but haven’t seen fit to call it its own thing yet. -Radio, Telegraph, Telephone, Photography (albeit chemical for too long), Audio Recording, Cinema (see photography), Television, Fax (remember when that was cool), Internet, Cell Phone, Smart Phone- We talk about CyberSpace, thanks to William Gibson, but an alternate reality to the immediate family and community beyond the written word, has been taking hold, shape, and probably re-mapping our brains for some time. Oz is better known than most lands, and the Emerald City has an excellent chamber of commerce. They just have to do something about the infrastructure.
More people wanted a Death Star built by the United States Federal government than care about legislative reform to keep Congress from well, being Congress. This can be used for good or ill. Hitler had great propaganda skills. Fortunately, Hollywood was even better. Fighting it is like Henry Ford trying to re-create a world that didn’t have mass produced cars and Walt Disney making theme parks celebrating ways of life that didn’t have movies or television. It’s burning books so we don’t get too many ideas in our heads. We can pretend the world isn’t different and suffer the consequences: Hitler, Osama Bin Laden, Jim Jones. All master manipulators of symbolics and culture. People didn’t follow them out of fear, at least not initially, but for the idea of being part of “something else.” How many a young people, myself included, sought refuge in some made up world from uncaring parents and less than hopeful circumstances? Books, art, poetry, have long traditions in this and can guide us as we change. But we have to accept we are changing. I don’t quite know what to call it, something like the Mediasphere. It’s where you are right now, and most people who can get to an outlet or at least a rechargeable battery are living. The President of the United States, Bill Gates, and some folks in a remote village in Afghanistan may all be watching the same program. They’re all certainly connected to the Internet. The lure in part, there isn’t much of a caste system. The fear in part, there are no boundaries. I’m old enough to know that’s something to fear, so we should talk about it.
All Things Media, Great and Small