“Cable TV will have more reaching effects on society than the Industrial Revolution 200 years ago.” – A quote by Kenneth Baker the Information Technology Minister in 1982.
We read this quote and many like it in James Curran’s Technology Foretold. His piece tells us about predictions made that were to form our future, but are not around today. All these predictions, that flopped.
Cable TV, Digital TV, Interactive TV and the Dotcom bubble are all things we were told to await but with no final product. Not one that meets our expectations anyway, which may be a good thing considering the idea of these technologies being “death for the couch potato”. But who are we to blame in all of this? The computer geeks ‘bigging up’ their technology can be put down as one culprit. The other, authoritative figures and organisations, particularly Murdoch’s empire. With their power they can influence the media, and all that is needed is one persuasive piece and the hype goes spiralling. With all these broken promises, I personally wouldn’t want to believe any hype surrounding new products. That’s unless I see it for myself.
One thing Curran does seem to highlight throughout The Future of Journalism is that although these hypes didn’t work, it has introduced ideas for new facilities.