New media has totally changed the way we’re informed. Being involved in academia as graduate students and instructors, others might assume we are informed on current affairs and demand credibility from our sources. However, interest in news topics declines every year and academics are probably as susceptible as everyone else.
There’s a reason neither a person’s level of interest in current affairs nor their burden of social responsibility indicate how informed they’ll be about the news. New media has started a new conversation that’s changed the tone, length and content of the information everyone’s talking about. We can use new media to manage our social, intellectual and professional needs.
So why not use new media to grasp the concept of conglomerations? I experience new media every day. I interact with it, I’m interested in it and I can grasp it. On the other hand, news stations and broadcast companies aren’t very practical to me.
On the other hand, I can’t grasp the fact that Disney has it’s hand in lots of different cookie jars. Disney isn’t just about the amusement park around the corner, they’re tied into new media and legacy media in ways that I can see. They also have a lot of power behind the scenes. But I don’t really notice when they reorganize their business.
I do notice when Facebook buys a quirky photo sharing company that a few college students developed, because when that happened I finally got Instagram on my Android. And I was able to edit and share my photos with “iPhone people”. It ended the iPhone/Android segregation! We could all be friends again.
I immediately felt the impact of the shift in control when it involved social media relevant to me. It impacted me because I wanted to use Instagram, a social media application once only available to iPhone users. When Facebook bought Instagram, it was available to more people but the technology didn’t change.
I don’t see whatever goes into conglomerations, but the participatory nature of social media helps me grasp the effects of what’s happening behind the scenes.