Wednesday, September 21, 2005

A World Of Digital Dim Sum | Newsweek

"In the beginning, our entertainment landscape looked a lot like a big family dinner. Everybody piled around the TV, and we all ate whatever the major networks were serving up. Maybe we squabbled between courses, but everyone came away largely satisfied, stuffed and lethargic.
Now iPod-shuffle ahead to 2005. Entertainment is increasingly bite-size, intense, portable and on demand. The experts call it "snacking," and say there's much more to come. We've become savvy grazers in everything from personal electronics to food to travel. The world is our tapas bar, and mobile TV may just be our next patatas bravas."

In the beginning, everyone talked about it, but no one actually did anything about it!

Sorry, getting a bit jaded here. Nice to hear that current thinkers don't tend to think the new generation are more stupid, just because their attention span is shorter.

"Children today have "a level of visual literacy much higher than when we were kids," says Jonathan Steuer, a consumer strategist at Iconoculture. "Watching TV, I used to wait for something interesting to happen—totally foreign to [my 4-year-old]." Yet quick and snappy doesn't mean dumbed down. In his book "Everything Bad Is Good for You," author Steven Johnson argues that, while TV's erstwhile linear, single-themed plotlines used to call for passivity, today's increasingly multipronged programs are actually making us smarter."

Which brings up another point. Are we getting shorter attention spans based on our media consumption or are our media formats changing to suit our increased information literacy?

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