There’s been a lot of blather on the threat to books by new media. In fact, at the moment new media represent an alternative to the stranglehold that big corporations have on print publishing (that could change). We go through this every time a new information technology comes along.
Graphic novelist Warren Ellis’s comments get to some of the key differences between print and elecontric media — “the web isnâ€™t a replacement medium â€” itâ€™s *anotherâ€ medium.” The gist of his observations is that the web is a “burst” medium. Information (or opinion) is served up in quicker helpings. Following are a couple more selections from his post on this subject.
- I love print. I love magazines that commit and pay for long articles and long fiction. The web rewards neither approach. Itâ€™s a packeted medium, a surf medium. Short bursts are the way to go.
- If attention span was dead, JK Rowling wouldnâ€™t be selling paperbacks thick enough to choke a pig.
Now, there are a few blogs that I like that run print-length items: Gawain’s Heaven Tree and Conrad H. Roth’s Varieties of Unreligious Experience, for two. But in general I agree with Mr. Ellis on this notion of “burst media” — even for sources like those I learn about new posts through a feed reader. What could be more “burst”?