Sunday, March 3, 2013

Levinson on Blogging

In the second chapter of his book New New Media, Paul Levinson presents a wide range of information about blogging. He writes, "Blogging takes the dissemination of news and opinion one big step beyond the telegraph by allowing 'reporters'--that is, people, everyone--to file their stories instantly not with their newspapers but on their blogs, and therein, with the world at large. And because blogs are under the personal editorship of the writer, they can be about anything the writer pleases--unlike the newspaper of magazine. This personalization or 'de-professionalization' of communication is one of the signal characteristics of new new media" (p. 19). Though Levinson's concern is journalism and blogging, I would suggest that we could take this argument even further and say that new and new new media have changed all communication and information professions. De-professionalization with the changing media and technology scene is happening in many professions: librarianship, medicine, teaching, even the arts. It is telling that this class has attracted a number of students in SLIS and the J-school. Both professions are facing considerable changes and de-professionalization. Both must face head on the future of print.

JPEG of blog entry draft before adding JPEG of blog entry
I like to think of libraries as the great democratic equalizer by providing equal access to information. Levinson makes a similar case for blogging, but rather than equal access to information--consumption, he argues that blogs provide everyone the ability to write--production. There is also opportunity to connect, socialize, collaborate, and debate. That is what makes it new new media which "are intrinsically in the business of maximizing individual expression" (p. 50).  

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