Saturday, May 24, 2008

What If There Was No TV?

It's probably a scary thought for a lot of broadcasters (and advertisers), but it looks like TV's future isn't what it used to be. For fifty years we have experimented as a species with television, letting billions of people stare passively at a screen, with no say in the matter other than the option of changing the channel they stare at. The result - according to Clay Shirky, author of Here Comes Everybody - is that TV has become a sink for our cognitive energies: we consumed instead of creating. But all that's about to change ...

As he puts it in this presentation:

Here is what a four year old knows - a screen that ships without a mouse, ships broken. Media that’s targeted at you but doesn’t include you may not be worth sitting still for!

The result - we are only at the start of an amazing explosion in human creativity: only it is a creativity in which we are co-creators rather than passive consumers. For example there's this; and then there's this:


MUTO a wall-painted animation by BLU from blu on Vimeo.

1 comment:

  1. I find it useful pedagogy to think of the current historic pattern as something of a repeat of events following on the invention of the Gutenberg Press when the corrupt theocracy -- treating the State as God hence adults as Children of the State -- lost its control over the primary medium to a new technology.

    The Protestant Reformation, tragically accompanied by a hundred years of bloody wars, was part of the resulting recovery of the direct relationship between sovereign individuals and God with the State as human creation.

    That, in turn, led to a direct relationship between sovereign individuals and the rest of creation -- the relationship better known as science.

    The natural urge of humanity is humanity's seeming paradox: mastery over nature, hence his own nature. This impulse for mastery over nature leads directly to the age of exploration. The frontiers deriving therefrom lead to freedom -- literally, a domain that is free.

    However, in space there will be no conflicts between pioneer and indigenous ways of life -- as, for example, there has historically been between higher carrying capacity agrarian culture encroaching on older lower carrying capacity hunter-gatherer cultures -- or going further back into prehistory, between man and "nature" in the narrow sense of life which is not man. Moreover, the free heliocentric domain is so much greater than the free domain enjoyed by life when it crawled onto dry land from primeval oceans, that it shows how absurdly inadequate even the history following on the Gutenberg Press is in the rational treatment of this potential. As I said, it is pedagogy -- but we must all grow up sometime.

    PS: You might now have a clue as to how I became a reader of your blog -- and it seems to be another dimension of the emergent creativity -- the "accident".

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