Tuesday, August 08, 2006

The Curious, Unblog Blog

"The Web has ascended, in part, because of the dramatic way in which it has driven down the cost of transmitting words, sounds, and images. We don't think about how expensive it used to be to transmit words, but we should. In the late 1800s, for example, trans-Atlantic telegrams cost $50 or $100 in today's money to send 20 words. These prices spurred the invention of the abbreviating language of telegramese to compress complex messages into a few words. Telegram writers added the prefix 'un' to any word to amend the meaning of 'no' or 'not' to a word. This technique is illustrated by the famous, if apocryphal, exchange of telegrams between a foreign editor and his lazy reporter in the field. 'Why unnews?' the editor telegrammed to his reporter, who hadn't filed for weeks. The reporter replied, 'Unnews good news.' The editor retorted, 'Unnews unjob.' "

Jack Shafer, Editor-in-Chief, Slate
April 29, 2004 at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism

The above quote, showing the incredible impact the news and the internet has had on each other, is a great way to kick off this blog. I intend for this forum to be the 'unblog blog' - that is, to skim off the gossip and cut the rambling to really question what the media's doing and where it's going. And the answer? Well, I can't say for sure, but it might just be staring you in the face in the comments box.

It's all in the name of dialogue, cherubim. Let the games begin.

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