The rise of the video, emojis and demagogues – and the decline of reading

Demagogues of the world, right or left, have got to love television. The linear, emotion-driven, passive, and image-centred medium has reduced politics to a reality-show. As Neil Postman posited in his book Amusing Ourselves to Death, television has vastly downgraded the level of public discourse in most democracies. From US to Iran, from Venezuela to France, from Egypt to Russia, from Italy to Turkey, there is as much competition over viewers’ gaze as it is over their ballots. In many countries, gaze is automatically translated into votes.

Most alarmingly, the internet, which was the last word-centred public space after the decline of print journalism, is capitulating to the television format. Social networks’ notion of the Stream, in Facebook, Twitter etc., is killing the web and thereby word-based journalism. Facebook is now more like the future of television than what the web looked like for over two decades.

Source: The rise of the video, emojis and demagogues – and the decline of reading

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s