Since 9/11 the media landscape has experienced major unprecedented changes. These changes have heavily been connected with the evolving role of technology. Digital devices, mobile phones, electronic communications services and accessories, laptops and the explosion of the on-line revolution has become somewhat a threat to traditional pen and paper journalist.
These new technology devices penetrating the core of the media environment are in turn diminishing the power of the intellectual hard-drives contribution to the media, creating a digital media age. There are a number of key features which have paved the landscape in this technological hungry media circus. The rise of carried technologies such as mobile phones, laptops and digital cameras has opened up the floodgates for citizen journalism. As a result, non-professionals have with ease, broke into the media sphere using such varied technologies. Anyone can contribute to the sector by taking a photograph or a video on their mobile phone and send it into a media outlet. Take for example the publics major contribution to the coverage of the Dublin riots on February 25th 2006, or the 7/11 London bombings. National newspapers like the Irish Independent or global television networks like Sky news published photographs and broadcasted videos recorded by the public during these events. This contemporary feature has become an extremely important one to the media as it not undermines, but simply challenges the journalistic practices and career path of the professional.
An undeniable feature crucial to this new media age is the blogging phenomenon. It is estimated nowadays there are 52 million blogs worldwide. This cut-throat agile on-line type of citizen journalism from unknown and unpublished writers has had huge effects on the political and current affairs environment. With its significant short-term boom, blogging diminishes political biasness as we get eye-witness accounts and opposite sided opinions forming a type on on-line political entertainment channel. It is because of this, now unheard of for a political party or figure not having a blogspot.
Unlucky for some and a god-send to others, the journalistic profession is rapidly changing because of the blogging phenomenon. Journalists are now being hired to monitor, control and improve blogs and unknown writers with no journalistic training have been asked to participate in online political debates. Broadcast journalism has been affected as a result leading to popular broadcast blogspots like the Joe Duffy show on RTE Radio One’s liveline.
So if you choose to ignore the importance of blogging in this new media age you may as well take off your thinking cap and shut down your laptop as you will be lost in the modern media environment. It is not a case of if we have to ask ourselves, but how these central features of the digitalised on-line revolution age along with core technologies such as mobile phones have changed our media entertainment environment and become crucial to the battleground of political and current affairs.
With the recent release of Apples “Iphone” which includes a revolutionary mobile phone, a 2 megapixel camera with video and software that allows the user to upload, view, and e-mail photos, a widescreen Ipod with touch controls, breakthrough internet communications with desktop class email, web browsing, maps and built in Wifi forming a kind of playstation for the media professional, it is clear that in this new media age the technological hardrive has quickly accelerated that of the intellectual one leaving the view of traditional journalistic practices behind in a haze as old and outdated.