Are you in with the new or out with the old? The Media convergence phenomenon is amongst us, it alters the relationship between technology, industry and audiences. The concept of convergence has also had a large impact on the media industries production, distribution and consumption of content.
Henry Jenkins (2006, p. 2) states that “By convergence I mean the flow of content across multiple media platforms.” Our daily interaction within the convergence culture enables us to flow across numerous media platforms. The advancement in new media technologies allowed the same content to flow through many different channels. Over time, new media platforms have revolutionized the way in which we interpret the medium and the message.
The transition from analog to digital content, has resulted in old media platforms to live, die or mutate. A cassette tape (analog) provides chronological access of songs, on the other hand a mp3 (digital) offers random access to any song of choice. Consequently, the purpose of the medium and message changes. “Convergence is, in that sense, an old concept taking on new meaning,” (Jenkins, 2006 p. 6). This led me to question, Mark Federman’s article “What is the meaning of The Medium is the Message?”
To distinguish the difference between the medium and the message, Marshall McLuhan (1964, p. 7) states that, “the medium is the message”. It clearly defines the medium as having a message of its own. The notion of Mark Federman’s opinion made me question if the medium has the potential of being everything? Mark Federmans comprehension of McLuhan’s statements provides us with the understanding that we must not focus entirely on the content of the medium.
My interpretations of Jenkins ideas of convergence culture, has triggered me to be more aware of its uncertainties and the endless new opportunities that it may provide. Due to convergence being an ongoing process, we will not know the full extent of power it comprises. Therefore, time will only tell what dynamic media changes will experience on the convergence merry-go-round!
Federman, M. (2004) What is the Meaning of the Medium is the Message?
Jenkins, H (2006). “Worship at the altar of convergence”: A new paradigm for understanding media in change. In H. Jenkins, Convergence culture: Where old and new media collide (pp1-24). New York: New York University Press.