Is the medium the message?

This is my first blog, propelled by suggestions that I should, the need to express my thoughts in public in ways other than phoning in to local radio and the fact that I just wrote my first blog for work.

Perhaps it’s beginning to get overplayed, but I have been considering a) what analogue (as opposed to digital) is and b) what implications that may have. So my conclusions are twofold: Analogue seems to represent what it conveys more closely (as does an analogy) and thus is extremely varied in its form. Digital representation is essentially a mere copy of what it conveys and reduced to simple binary code.

Does this matter? I think it may, on two levels. By being more distanced from the subject being expressed, we may understand less about it as we lose the context. Satnavs are the prime example as they offer no sense of wider geography. Likewise with an analogue clock, we can observe time advancing around the hours in a way that we cannot with digital. When my car had a would not start recently I discovered that cars are now simply hooked up to computers to diagnose their faults. When the fault in mine proved too obscure, the mechanic did get under the car to mess about with wires, but it took a week in the garage to arrive at that point.

I also think we lose something to do with texture and contact by having things on a screen. I love the feel of a book and seeing them on shelves. I’m not a big one for home decor and I guess that to me, books themselves often decorate a room, giving it a sense of history and character. Lately I’ve heard that people are starting to buy records again, but often not to actually play them, simply to own them and surely to touch and hold them.

The irony of writing this is an online blog is not lost on me but as I observed at the  Simon Starling Exhibition and in the 3D pots made by my cousin Jonathan Keep, sometimes digital and analogue approaches can inform each other in such a way that something truly creative is produced.


One thought on “Is the medium the message?

  1. What a great idea to start this blog though does this mean you have moved on from flirting with media to something more serious??! I was thinking about my natural tendency to avoid social media and so also missing out on the more regular snippits of contact that seem to be part of most people’s everyday lives. I think it does come from something similar to what you describe… I mean I just love meeting with friends like your lovely self and chatting and laughing and hugging and musing and pondering and reminiscing and feel like time spent in this way is so much more life affirming than the fragments we get online. That said I look forward to reading more of your digital thoughts 🙂


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