“The Vietnam War was lost on television” is a phrase attributed to Marshall McLuhan. We still trusted our news media back then. More importantly, we were all watching the same channel. When Walter Cronkite reported on the war casualties, we all had the same numbers. McLuhan’s point is expressed by another of his phrases, “the medium is the message.”
Today’s medium is social media. Streaming is interesting, but social media is the game-changer. I could brush broader strokes and say the Internet, but social media is the medium that allows us to self-publish, and that’s powerful – just ask the President.
I find it ironic, if not pathetic, there is such pervasive sentiment bashing the Media. Fox News plays to the lowest denominator while MSNBC promotes Antifa. Zuckerberg should take more responsibility. We love to blame others.
On the receiving side, we curate our messages by accepting certain friends and blocking others. On the publishing side, we share posts that appeal to us. That’s self-publishing. That makes us the Media. And we’re bad at it. It’s fair to say the etiquette is still forming, but until then, stop blaming section 230. We’re all publishers. We’re all content distributors. Own it.