26 May 2008

A telling story

The way youngsters consume media today may be a telling story. It may give us a few pointers on the way news, entertainment and even education ought to be designed, packaged and distributed in the future.

In an interview to The Editor’s Weblog recently, Kathleen Carroll, Executive Editor and Senior Vice President of the Associated Press, suggested that, “It no longer is an assumption that text is the default and only way to tell a story.”

Ms Carroll felt, “It’s the best way to get the fast word out.” “Only now,” quotes The Editor’s Weblog from that interview, “AP reporters also think about the most appropriate media to tell a story, which will be of most use to customers.” This thought certainly turns print journalism upside down, eroding its dominant role in the distribution of news.

The point made by the Economist.com article, From literacy to digiracy (see my previous post), on whether “our pedagogical tools are inconsistent with the skills needed” is also worth considering.

Youngsters today are not only consuming huge amounts of electronic/digital media outside their school/college curriculum, they are actually enjoying the experience far more than they do reading textbooks or attending lectures. In doing so, their skills in handling and experimenting with electronic/digital media are developing more rapidly than what our traditional means of education can impart.

And yet, and especially in India, there’s been very little improvement in the way education is designed, packaged and distributed for consumption by these youngsters. No wonder youngsters are moving away from textbooks and lectures, and getting hooked onto the Internet, video games, mobilephones and the TV. Can we blame them?

[Citation: Associated Press 2.0: 1-2-3 filing for all stories, The Editor’s Weblog, posted by Jean Yves Chainon, 21 May 2008.]

No comments: