The Digital Drivetrain
The automotive world's transition into the age of digital media

Converging into darkness

Lately our in class discussions have centered around the idea of media convergence; that as time passes all forms of media are converging together. Its hard to deny that everyone wants a piece of the new technology pie, but this also means that soon all of the new frontiers will converge into one master device or form of media. It has already begun to happen, whether it is Chevy putting facebook into their cars or Obama’s Twitter, the examples of media and cultures meshing together are all around us. Throughout the discussion I have asked myself one question; is this convergence of media really a good thing?

Still from Disney Pixar's Wall-e

One of my biggest fears is what will happen to person-to-person interactions. In class we were discussing how texting and facebooking has made talking on the phone slowly fade away. Many discussed how they hate to talk on the phone with another person and feel it is just awkward. As the technology gets more and more popular and inexpensive, younger and younger children are exposed to things like texting and facebook, and these kids are less and less exposed to talking on the phone. My younger cousins claim they will almost never  unless they are forced to do so, which scares me for one reason; will technology bring the end of social interactions?

Think about it. What if this trend continues? Sure, talking on the phone seems like a small step, but every day smart phones are getting smarter and new devices like Ipads appear on the market. Soon we are going to be tapped into devices that combine aspects of laptops, televisions, cell phones and ipods all into one. Will this kill the face to face conversation? In 20 years from now will there be no need at all to ever leave one’s home because the convergence of media will put every form of entertainment right into our homes. Are we going to become the fat, motionless blobs of a race like you see in Disney’s Wall-e?

And what about the quality of our conversation. Texting has virtually killed the need for any form of correct conventions or grammar. Will this technological trend spill over into our culture? Will one day our conversations become the same disgusting style as a youtube comment flame war? What is going to happen as people get more and more tapped into technology and less and less worried about the content of what they are actually saying? I fear for the future of the convergence culture, i rly m wuried bout it


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