Monday, June 20, 2005

More to the point

Suw Charman reports from the pre-Supernova Dinner/Berkely Cybersalon that it appears as though the folks looking at the impact blogging has had on the media pretty much miss the point since they're focused on comparing specific media types instead of looking across genre.
But I think that the point that people's attention is being diverted away from the mainstream media in all its forms by various and assorted different pursuits, and people gather their news from many different sources. The idea of the effect of blogs being felt only by the print media is as fallacious as the idea that TV and radio are only being threatened by videoblogging and podcasting.
Suw goes on to point out that people "mix and match" mediums these days in order to get their news, which is a pretty important take home message that those in mainstream media seem to be missing.

Unfortunately, in addition to completely misunderstanding the full impact of the blogosphere, they seem to miss the reason behind the draw. Why is it that people "mix and match" the mediums so much more than they used to? I'd be willing to bet that the biggest part of the draw is a compulsion to be exposed to something that isn't just more of the same. There are still people who want the whole story and to have access to different perspectives as well as pertinent documentation. Mainstream media unfortunately dumbs it down to the sound-bite or a quick blurb; this is why the focus of a story, such as abuse at Gitmo, can be completely re-directed to use of a WWII reference to avoid the actual issue being raised. People who actually want to think will be drawn to other modalities of information gathering and will actively search for all sides of the story instead of just sticking to biased presentations or ones that don't really seem to address the pertinent points/ramifications. I call it the "malt-ball effect"; it looks all nice and sweet on the outside, but once liquid hits the core there's no substance.

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