One day, my husband, who is 12 years older than me, showed me a picture and said “do you remember those?” I looked at it and started guessing. “It’s a receiver”, “a radio”, “a……I don’t know, I give up!” He looked at me and said “Seriously? It’s a PAGER!” I have seen pagers before in movies. And, trying to save my reputation of a knows-it-all person, I said “oh, I know, they are like a phone with just a text messaging feature”, to what he started explaining to me that; first, you would call somebody’s pager from your house phone. That person would look at the pager, see your phone number and call you back from his/her phone.
I called him ancient.
I never knew that.
Not only because I am younger than him, but also because I lived in a country where there wasn’t even a mobile phone network until I was about 10… so this millennium.
On the same note, my grandfather, who doesn’t believe in any gods, says often, “When I was born, we didn’t have electricity. Now I can talk to you through this computer while you are on the other side of the planet. This is evolution.” And it is not easy to prove him wrong.
The first chapter of “Field Notes from the age of Digital Journalism” says that each generation of Americans grows up with a different type of media. When we say that the teenagers look like they live in their own world, we might not be that wrong. The author stresses that not only do we grow up with a different media on the rise, we also shape it. Both by being the producers and the consumers. Being a part of the free market, the media has to adapt to the demand in order to survive.
On the other side, we are shaped by the media, in our constant need to belong to social groups, to integrate.
Media defines what is “in trend” and what isn’t starting from clothes, home design and communication devices and ending with social groups, activities and vacation destinations.
While our society makes it nearly impossible for a person to succeed on him/herself, it is very important not to fall in the trap of conformity and be like everybody else because media imposes that on us.