One more book-related post, quite uncategorised. Sometimes (if not always) an exploration into an unfamiliar take on the issue one is interested in pays off. I’m reading Bob Garfield’s (AdAge) book on the changes and challenges media industries now face, greatly thanks to our digitalised world. The title: The Chaos Scenario. Amid the Ruins of Mass Media, The Choice for Business is Stark: Listen or Perish (link to the related FB profile here, and to a 3+ min. video version on YouTube above).

Garfield’s language and approach are, well, loud, to say the least. Talking about the power of word-of-mouth message. He writes:

That Jesus of Nazareth. His word-of-mouth was simply outstanding. With no advertising budget whatsoever, his brand soon swept the globe.

So that kind of witty analyst.

But what I find very interesting is his chapter on digital living and (traditional) politics that he calls Powers That Be (see that video…) vs. Powers That Be 2.0, us all.

The whole notion of political communication has changed. Think Wikileaks. Think many elections and crises, from Pakistan to Iran, to the Mumbai attacks. As Garfield notes, having talked to Ethan Zuckerman of Harvard: not everyone may, or can, be tweeting in ‘developing’ countries, or those in whihc communication is restricted by state censorship. But now one can cross boders and get global support to one’s cause so incredibly quickly, virally. In many cases,  those diasporic communities of the counties in question have been paramount to the dissemination of latest news and alternative views to and fro, but to the global audience, for the maxiumum awareness of the issue.

Maybe indeed the question is not only about citizen journalism or Facebook enabling protests, maybe it is indeed about changing North – Global South communication flows and patterns.

PS: A funny music video along the lines of Garfield’s premise: Mad Ave Blues.

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