Searching for the Moon

Shannon Clark's rambles and conversations on food, geeks, San Francisco and occasionally economics

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Full Disclosures

Posted by shannonclark on October 29, 2004

stevenberlinjohnson.com: Full Disclosures

I posted a rather long comment. Steven Johnson has announced his next book – a polemic on “Everything Bad Is Good For You: Why Today’s Pop Culture Is Making Our Kids Smarter”. As I greatly enjoyed his previous book Emergence, I look forward to reading his next book (and he has another book which I will be seeking out when I have cought up a bit with my current too large too be read shelf – okay shelves)

My comment is mostly to agree with his premise. I think that modern pop culture – both here in the US and globally, is increasingly complex and sophisticated. I also would add that the growing trend towards creativity being easy and rewarded, as well as a focus on text (email, IMs) over voice is a very good thing. As well the trend to time-shifted self-programmed (Tivo, iPods, napster, iTunes, etc) vs. earlier broadcast models is also a great and important trend.

The complexity of the future will be how we merge the best elements of the broadcast, common culture model with the 1000’s of separate tribes model of the Internet and other connected media. That is, how do we consolidate and edit into selective summaries complexity – but also support and foster that complexity. I think current media may or may not figure this out, but I am confident that some of them will (MTV, Comedy Central perhaps faster than ABC, NBC, CBS or FOX).

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