The cult of difference

“The ignorance of how to use new knowledge stockpiles exponentially.”

It is said that if Plato were alive today he would have no problem adjusting to the (post) modern way of life.Not so. His pre-Socratic way of thinking would have been totally at odds with the way we think today, even if we took into consideration that he would make a good media manager – the total self centeredness would come as no surprise to today’s media  people –  and also he would not be able to take into consideration that there was an implicit equality between people.

I was thinking about this recently when talking to someone from the commercial media.They were talking about resources – the vulnerable soft underbelly of the media – and bemoaning the fact that their equipment is about 10 years behind the times when you see what the public sector radio has etc etc..

My thoughts turned back to the ye olden dayes of the 1980’s when, because of very little technology shift, resources in radio were about the same among both public and commercial broadcasters – massive turntables for discs, reel to reel tape recorders, clunky cartridges that were made like a cassette deck etc etc…

The shift came with the introduction of digital technology. the manufacturers as such were taken away by the fact that because it was so new, so non-visceral that you could charge almost anything for it and who were the suckers for all this technology? The wondrous resourceful public sector. And off we went etc etc…

Now I now pride comes before a fall but the ministrations of media techno faddists slowly drifted their way to the top of the media tree, by claiming the obfuscation of media knowledge, and therefore claiming (as Mclhuan predicted) the higher moral ground in every argument. eventually media technos became managers and thus arose the non-manager manager and their acolytes etc etc…

The fall has not yet begun for (as Mcluhan also predicted) the use of difference, the cult of the new and the not so gentle art of media massage has made too many willing to give over the power over knowledge to those who, like our sad Plato, are pre-Socratic in their arguments – always deferring to the higher power of absolutes rather than the use of rhetoric. Plato became our first media god, but, sadly, not the last…..

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