Everyone knows that since the invention of the Internet, everything about our daily lives has changed drastically. The main question becomes: Is convergence transforming the nature of mass communication and leading us to re-examine the term as a whole?
The 3 main aspects of mass communication that have changed dramatically is the relationships between organizations and their audience, daily personalized content, and the dominating buisnesses in the industry.
In the early analog stages of media, most of the communication was entirely one way: from the source to the audience. But now with the digital age, the audience is able to communicate back and forth with their sources. For example, more people now a day will look at reviews of a restaurant on Yelp! before checking out the restaurant themselves. This allows the restaurant to determine how happy customers are with the establishment, or what they can change to make it better. With the more direct lines of contact between sources and their audience, the media has been able to more personally watch their audience. This, to them, is a wonderful new accomplishment but for the rest of us? Not so great. Have you noticed how anytime you search something on Google or check out a website, then annoying ads starting popping up directly linked to the website you just visited? These are called Cookies. This is also another way that your source can tailor themselves to track your behaviors, tendencies, and habits. The other new change to the media industry is the fact that there is a large oligarchy when it comes to who provides these internet services. Comcast is one of the leading internet provider in the US. This, to them, is the best thing possible, but to most of the United States is the worst. Since they are dominating the industry by being one of the leading providers, they can set the prices however they want due to the fact that they have little to no competition.
The Internet is no longer a single road, but a fast-paced two lane highway that is constantly under construction.
According to new posts from Wired.com, numerous music websites such as Pandora and Soundcloud could go under soon if things don’t change and change fast.
Soundcloud and Pandora are different from each other as far as providing music, but both seem to be struggling financially. It is rumored that Pandora is up for sale. Soundcloud is different from Apple Music and Spotify in that artists can upload music or broadcasts all by themselves, for free, without the hassle of legal documents or a middle man. In order for music to be uploaded to Spotify, people usually have to pay their middle men like CD Baby or Tunecore to upload their music to Spotify for them.
Soundcloud has become a popular place for up and coming musicians to upload their music straight from their device. Losing Soundcloud would be a major blow to new musicians, but also for popular artists who may have not copied their work onto another device. If Soundcloud did indeed crash, then all of the music ever uploaded would disappear along with the website.
However, an organization called Archive Team has been looking at helping Soundcloud for a while in hopes that they can save people’s work from disappearing entirely. Archive Team has always kept to its goal of preserving the web and managing sites from being obliterated along with their uploaded masterpieces.
But as Wired. com reminds us all, not everything lasts forever, not even the Internet. Now that is a scary thought.
Technomyopia: is a strange phenomenon that causes us to overestimate the potential short-term impacts of a new technology.
So essentially, we always think that the next big thing in technology is going to wipe out anything before it, and we will all be doomed.
Throughout our developing of technology over the past century, we have always expressed certain fears and excitements about the future of technology ahead of us. But this hasn’t always been the case. Once TV was introduced, everyone was so afraid that this new advancement would entirely wipe out radio as a whole. But it in fact did the opposite, TV was created by using building blocks that radio had provided.
Back in the 1970’s, we had three main industries pumping out information simultaneously: Broadcast & Motion Picture Industry, Print & Publishing Industry, and Computer Industry. But after the Internet became a widely available resource to everyone, more people began using the internet to converge all of these industries together. So now, businesses didn’t have to use just one medium to reach their customers, but all three at the same time! This transformation came about in the 2000’s and continues today with all three of the industries combined to make up the Internet.
The only downfall to having all of these industries combined is that if one falls, all of them will fall together. This is called the Chaos Theory. And this is why we must be cautious about the present, but not let that inhibit our excitement for the future.
As they say, the best is yet to come.
As we all know, Twitter has been through a lot in the past couple of months with a lot of important people quitting at the same time. But many others things are looming ahead for this prominent social networking site and some of these possible changes to the site have people on both sides of the spectrum. What are these possible new changes? The first is extended the character limit from 140 to as many as 10,000. The second is changing your timeline from the tweets from say 9 hrs ago showing up first instead of the newest tweets from say 1 hour ago. Essentially, your timeline will end up being more confusing, in my personal opinion, than it was before. Last year, Twitter added the “While you were away” boxes to tell you people who you follow’s tweets appearing in a special section, instead of having to scroll all the way back to find them specifically. This link provided shows the new timeline from a tipster that sent these to The Verge.com: http://www.theverge.com/2016/2/6/10927874/twitter-algorithmic-timeline
These pictures show the differences in two subtle screenshots and the spotted changes in this tipster’s timeline.
As far as the character change from 140 to possibly 10,000, some people believe that even though they will extent that character limit, most tweets will not end up being that long. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted recently saying that Twitter never actually intended to set the character limit to 140 but that fit into the 160 SMS messaging so they just decided to stick with it. He responds to when he’s seen people taking screenshots of longer messages and then tweeting them. He says that expanding the character limit will help because it could allow “Text that can be searched. Text that can be highlighted. That is more utility and power!” However, Jack says that “tweetstorms” will never go away.
But will these two changes cause more prominent Tweeters to shy away from Twitter and stop using it entirely? Or will it allow us to connect with more people and be more accessible?
Recently, I was posed the question, “Do you think the transformations in technology over time deserves to be called revolutionary or not?”
First off, I would like to go over several technological advances that have occurred over the years that deserved to be brought up: the telephone, television, and the networking computer. All three of these things have widely changed our world as we know it for better or worse, but the question really is, are all of these worth the adjective commonly described to them? Are these inventions indeed “revolutionary?”
In my opinion, yes, and here is my reasoning behind this statement:
The telephone was once something people used to have to compete over to stay on the line. Banks used to have to wait for days to even be able to have the line open for them. Other employees would simply read books and newspapers all day just the keep the connection all to themselves. Then we moved on the having telephone poles stretching everywhere to connect us to others, but now at the turn of the century, we may be able to have a cable that is the same width as a strand of human hair, carrying up to 3 million conversations. Even moving past that, think about how much we can do with our mobile telephones today. We have everything we need to know at the touch of our fingertips through our smart phones and can communicate through various ways to people all over the world! Even televisions have changed the way we view things, and our computers have enabled us all over the world to have an abundance of information at our expense and to our advantage to research as we desire. We are able to publish more findings, connect and work with others who may research similar things, and even communication with others in ways we never thought possible. Therefore, we would have never been able to do such things if it wasn’t for our incredible technological advances!
All in all, I would say our technology today is very much as “revolutionary” as we think it to be.