This week for BCM110 we covered ‘New Media & Convergence’. This topic was very similar to what we covered in BCM112, so it was interesting to really focus on the topic of convergence and view it from multiple angles.
As new media platforms emerge through the process of convergence, we see a shift in not only technology itself but also in the role that those who view and interact with technology play. The days of media audiences solely being consumers are long gone. In today’s society, almost every consumer can also be classified as a producer. We no longer just play the role of the audience, observing and viewing media. Now, we actively engage in and produce media ourselves, creating the class of citizen journalism.
Citizen journalism can be defined as “The collection, dissemination, and analysis of news and information by the general public, especially by means of the Internet.”
In sum, we no longer solely rely on mass media platforms for information, as consumers who are active producers can also create media. I can even classify myself as a producer, via writing this blog and posting about it on Twitter.
As stated in the lecture, there are pro’s and con’s to this new convergence.
This plays into last week’s topic of media ownership. Media convergence results in the same few plutocrats holding all ownership, which as mentioned in my ‘Media Industries’ blog can result in the information that is presented in media being skewed.
To me, media convergence means many things, however one of the key aspects I take from it is the extinction of media platforms such as the newspaper. I am ashamed to admit that in my 20 years on this earth I have probably read the newspaper fewer than 15 times. However, this is not to say that I do not keep up to date with current news, it is just that I access it via my smartphone. To me, this is the social norm, but on a Sunday morning I will still walk into the kitchen to see my parents reading the paper encouraging me and my siblings to read an article. Although I never engaged in the whole newspaper world, I still find it sad to know that in the near future they will cease to exist.
Ultimately, the process of media convergence will result in numerous media platforms being forgotten about. Although these technological advancements make life incredibly easy, I think it is important to not forget about where the multiple technologies integrated into our devices originally came from.