March 18, 2011

Martin Luther’s new media

Filed under: General — crcb @ 11:47 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Via Mike Masnick comes this story of Bob Woodward’s recent anti-internet-journalism rant. If I may go off on a tangent…

The old guard of the newspaper and book publishing industries are all singing from the same song book. Their implicit message is that the unlettered peasants can’t be trusted to create, or indeed to recognize, good content. We need, they say, professional journalists and editors.

If their concern about the public is genuine, it’s condescending. But I don’t think that’s it. I don’t even think it’s primarily about money. Their anxiety is about losing their mystique. They fear people will realize that journalism and publishing were never about difficult skills and esoteric knowledge, but about access to resources and willingness to do the work.

This reminds me of nothing so much as the Church’s reaction to the translation of the Bible into the common language. Now the holy mysteries have been handed to the laity, who don’t realize how lost we will be without their professional guidance.

But I don’t think we’re the ones who will be lost.


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