Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Will the Internet destroy Fleet St?
So are newspapers likely to be a thing of the past in a few decades time? Could be, but I wonder. Whenever a new medium emerges predictions of how it will clear the field are made and then somehow don't happen. For example:
a) that televsion would destroy the cinema whilst they both flourish and have even managed a simbiotic relationship.
b)In the nineties I once quoted in a textbook chapter on the media a prediction from a Sunday that newspapers written on paper would soon be replaced by a fine plastic reusable tissue which would be 'filled' each day via the internet. I deleted the quote for the next edition and I'm still waiting.
But let's suppose the number of titles decline and old fogies like myself, presumably by then in my nursing home, have to shell out a huge wedge of my pension just to sit in my bathchair and read my daily Guardian or Times? What impact will this decline have on the print media? I can only begin to speculate but:
i) so much of this will be conditional on what type of transmission vehicle emerges as dominant and here we're in the hands of technological advances. Maybe that refillable plastic will finally make its debut, or a super mobile phone or a smaller, cuter form of web accessing lap-top. Your scinece fiction guess is as good as mine.
ii) parties and politicians will all be creating easily accessible websites and super blogs with myriad features, many of them interactive. Maybe IT skills rather than televisual ones will be added to the must-have requirements for the aspiring politico.
iii) it might cool down the thrust to print scandal as looking at the pictures and reading Tracey Temple's diary onscreen, I'm guessing, would be less enticing than via the Street of Shame's traditional red-top scandal sheet; though eventually, if the taste for celebrity scandal continues, it's unlikely to make much difference.
iv) certainly political information will become more easily accessible; the key imponderable is whether voters, particularly young voters bother to do the accessing bit.
P.S. I'll sure put the word out about your site and I would appreciate any business you may send my. way... Later, Scott.
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