I have no idea where these thoughts are leading:
Where we have today is the Hands-On Generation. People use technology to control their lives. They use computers to decide what they want to read and where and when. The choices of music — and the media by which its enjoyed — is unprecedented. We’ve moved from once-a-week Don Kirschner’s Rock Concert, to MTV, to a choice of daily live rock performance on Letterman or Leno. Cable television, the VCR and DVD have utterly blown up the movie distribution industry. Tivo is already changing the way networks program. Cell phones and pagers let us shift time and place; is it possible to watch an old TV cop show that hinges on someone finding a pay phone without snickering?
It’s not just about instant gratification. It’s not even about Carrie Fisher’s wonderful line, “Instant gratification isn’t fast enough.” It’s about the instants getting ever shorter. It’s John Brunner, in his novel “Stand on Zanzibar:” “They say it’s automatic, but you really have to push this button.”
Though it’s been possible for decades to start your own garage band, now you can start the band, record it, press a CD, and distribute it — all without much of a corporate infrastructure.
Which is good, because corporations, which through the latter half of the ’90s tried to portray themselves as Shiny Happy People so that you too could be a spectacularly rich 30-year-old CEO of a publically traded company… well, not only are those days gone forever, but even the “adult supervision” companies are finally getting outed as Nasty Bastards who drove the market into a bridge abutment. Remember: it’s not the speed that kills you. It’s the deceleration after you stop.
If anyone can figure out what I’m getting at, please let me know.