Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Blogging - Gutenberg style.

Almost inevitably, there has been a backlash against blogging podcasting and the whole web 2.0 phenomenon. I guess the unbounded enthusiasm and wild claims for the technology demanded a degree of cynical re-evaluation. However, the fact that ordinary people with a minimum of technical expertise can now publish will have a tremendous effect on the way ideas are transmitted, adopted and adapted.

There will be resistance to such changes as social structures that have been around for decades or longer will gradually disappear or change beyond recognition. We can see this already in the world of print media where newspapers are already facing stiff competition (if not terminal, decline).

I would have liked to have been a fly on the wall when the last time such a huge sea change in communications hit the planet.

Time: Late in the fifteen century.
Place: A monastery in northern Italy

Monk A: I don't what's going on in the world. I mean ever since that guy, Gottenbach, Gutenberg, started up that print thingy the whole publishing business has gone down the tubes.

Monk B: I know, I know. I mean have you seen these new books? Cheap, nasty tomes, with no art or brains. I mean they push them out like sausages, without a thought to how they look.

Monk A: Yeah, I mean we spill blood producing a work worthy of the name and some guy comes along and knocks off these dodgy copies which sell for a fraction of the price.

Monk B: An have you seen what they're bringing out these days? I mean there we are reproducing Aristotle, St Augustus and Plato and what do they print? Books on farming!!! Pig husbandry!!! I even saw one on cooking.

I mean what is the world coming to?

Monk A: Any old idiot with a quill and an idea can just publish nowadays.

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