In The Medium is the Massage, Marshall McLuhan talks about how

“all media are extension of some human faculty – psychic or physical.” (p26)

While he uses examples such as radio – an extension of your ears – and TV – and extension of your sight – social media makes his point even more poignant. While facebook might be easy to mock and while incorporating “retweet” on Twitter into an everyday conversation might still feel weird, these mediums are just representing things that humans have been doing for centuries due to Marshall’s theory— but magnified to their maximum potential and broadcast across the web.

I found this really ironical because although people call facebook or twitter “new” media, according to him, those media are not very new at all at the core.


One response »

  1. I agree there is something really compelling about the idea of New Media in the sense that it capitalizes on very old forms of meaning-making. As Facebook approaches its 10 year anniversary, it has over 1.3 billion active users(!!)– It is in some ways like a global, web-based folk culture. It is where videos go viral, phrases are coined, etc etc

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