I believe that the best, and most important part of a culture is the sharing of it with other people. I mean, really, what’s a culture without other people to celebrate it with? I believe that the ways in which we express our feelings and beliefs are just as important as those selfsame beliefs and feelings. I’m talking about the mediums we use to interact with each other, and I believe that the medium, or interface, is just as vital in our expression as the message itself.
Growing up in New Orleans, I was surrounded by music and painting. I needed only to drive a short time to the French Quarter where I could listen to local music and browse local art. Most times there was even a live band playing at one of the cafes, but there was always someone performing at one of the many music clubs around town. The best part of it all is that much of that music and art is being recorded onto cds and prints where it can then be distributed easily and efficiently around the world. These easily accessible media are fully exploited by the artists and distributors. Their shops are all over town, and even online. I doubt that there are many who are not familiar with the great works of Louis Armstrong who called New Orleans home.
These days, it’s not hard to bump into all sorts of media. We’re practically engulfed by it. Television, computers, books, and cds are everywhere. Why? Because the most popular media are those that are easily reproduced. For example, Personally, I would rather create a flyer, or an invitation on my PC. I wouldn’t want to have to write out every single message by hand. This is to say, of course, that some media (or interfaces) are more efficient in communication than others.
However , nothing beats the live concert, or the face-to-face greeting. Regardless, electronic media are more easily distributable, and as such many people, including myself, have incorporated electronic media into many aspects of their lives. I don’t know what I’d do without my online radio stations. I’d be lost without my cds, and let’s not even talk about my portable jukebox. These things are an important part of how I express myself, because they’re so easy to share with my friends.
As a result of the accessibility of our new media, nations have been brought closer to one another for better and worse, but I believe that these interfaces are spaces in which we can all exchange our culture freely, and effortlessly. These new interfaces allow businesses to serve clients worldwide; allow the average person to connect with people in foreign countries; they even foster new forms of entertainment; and allow us to attain higher productivity and greater research possibilities for the continual growth of our civilization.
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