2008 is the new 2009

November 21, 2009

Rory Cellan-Jones, BBC’s technology editor, gave us a lecture on, well, what was it on? Essentially, he made the points that many of the other online lecturers had made before, through no fault of his own, of course. The media is changing, journalists need many skills, the world will soon end, etc. He also, however, cast doubt on the lasting impact of all these technomologies. Is it a revolution? Or is it just a fad? Most signals point somewhere in the middle; these new technofandangos will change the media, but they may also make us realise the value of professional journalism.

A glut of unreliable blogs and breaking news tweets will, hopefully, lead to a realisation of how precious and essential the careerists in journalism are. This has already been touched on before on this blog, and it was not the focus of Rory’s talk, so I present to you the stand out point from the lecture.

Rory, a busy man indeed, did not have the time to make a new powerpoint presentation from the one he made for the same talk last year. Consequently, all the headers were 2008. In most subjects you would not think this would matter. A talk on the Bayeux Tapestry would not change much in a year; “Still a tapestry, folks. Oh no wait, it’s…no, it is still a tapestry.” Surely these exciting revolutionary changes in the media world would render anything more than 11 days old antiquated and useless? Surely. Well, apparently not. Rory found it fairly easy to tell us about the exciting changes in the media from a year old script. Twitter was Twitter then and it is Twitter now.

For next year, if he finds the time to change the titles, the journalism students will be none the wiser, unless of course the interweb implodes and all copy is done by candlelight with quills. I think he would need to start from scratch if that were the case.



  1. This is very interesting. First off, I’d just like to say that I find your blog quite refreshing.
    Secondly, I’m curious about what you think of Jones’ year-old ppt slides. Do you think they were useful even though a year old? The media, especially online social media is constantly changing and improving. Twitter was much less used in 2008 than in 2009.

  2. Thank you, your blog was a great read.

    I think that because this year or so is very much the time of change the year-old slides managed to work, however, i think had it been from anytime before that half the talk would have been irrelevant. We are almost out the other side where new social media will have more defined role, though it is still up in the air.

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