Murphy's Law

Tom Murphy

Discussion on a new communications model….

Elizabeth Albrycht has kicked off a discussion on how the merger of new technologies and techniques with traditional communications practices can produce a new model.

It’s a fascinating subject and Elizabeth has clearly undertaken a lot of work in preparing the background.  She is calling for people to participate in the debate, to work through a whole multitude of issues that will affect communications moving forward.

She points to a few of the emerging patterns that will affect this discussion:

* We hear “markets are conversations”, but what does that mean in practical terms about how we re-structure our corporate communications?

* We issue calls for “transparency”, but what assumptions are underlying this call that come from the old command/control approach?

* We (culturally) celebrate (at least in the US) individualism in terms of “superstars” and “experts”, but success in this new world may just rely on collective effort.

* Our strategies for success, e.g., for delivering messages, relies upon an objectification of the audience (people are things, without agency). But now, the audience is no longer passive. What does it mean to have an active audience (people with agency)? How must this new assumption change our strategy for communications?

* McLuhan famously stated, “the medium is the message.” What is the message of the tools we are adopting e.g, blogs, wikis, RSS feeds, etc.? How does the tool itself change the interaction between transmitters – receivers of information? How does the use of these new tools transform traditional power flows? What does that mean for communication practice?

Read it and get thinking….

Written by Tom Murphy

February 15, 2005 at 9:01 am

Posted in General

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