Technology is not my thang.
I am admittedly not a guru with all this cyber-whats-its and giga-mega-beta-whose-its. And here I am, an editor for a blogging website.
How is this group able to function with someone so incompitent running the show, you ask? We have a motivated staff who, amongst them, are technology gurus willing to teach me. As a mass communications major, I’ve got the journalist qualities and know-how engrained, but in today’s world a journalist cannot go far without computer know-how.
It took me about a month of being here at school before I forced myself to read the tutorials written by our own tech specialist on staff, Mike Nacko, to learn how to post pictures to the site. After launching with our new format, I was nervous about exploring it. What this fear stems from, I think, is a fear of not understanding.
I met a woman who has this same problem at a public relations seminar I’ve been attending once a week. All of the attendees besides myself and one other student consist of business people of the area interested in learning ways to build their PR campaigns to accomplish goals that range from increasing membership and volunteerism to bettering their brand image through media. Part of the program is to learn how to use new technology for better networking… via Facebook.
Imagine. A room full of veteran business people learning a social networking site which, just a few short years ago was geared solely at college students. Inevitably, there is one woman in there who doesn’t “get it” and wants to know how using a Facebook group is better to communicate with a staff than through e-mail.
After explaining all of the different oganizational features of an FB group, it was still not enough to satisfy said woman. Hoping she would grasp a concrete metaphor, I compared the FB group to an office room that serves as the hub for the entire office building. Within this single room, there are filing cabinets after filing cabinets of organized paperwork – any documet that a worker could possibly need is in an easy to find spot so as to retreive it quickly and efficiently. There is a bulletin board with memos for all to see, and mailboxes for every worker there. An FB group, I explained to her, is a virtual replacement of this tangible office room example, able to hold virtually an infinite amount of information, excessible to anyone who needs it.
“HA! I’ve got her!” I thought to myself. So naive, though, I was, to the stubborness of what seems to be this anti-technology progression generation. This woman insisted again that she just didn’t get it.
While discussing this exchange with my professor, I refused to believe that my office room example could be anything short of a perfect model. If this is true, then the only explaination for this woman’s inability to “get it,” was a refusal to do so.
Perhaps her refusal to do so, suggested my professor, was because she was afraid she wouldn’t get it anyway.
I was stunned at first from this parallel that my professor drew between this stubborn woman to myself, but it undeniably exists.
This discomfort with technology, and a fear of not understanding it, is probably common with many more than just seminar-lady and myself, but while she exhibits a refusal to give what she doesn’t immediately understand a chance, I recognize the necessity and even the benefits of technology, and this may be the difference between our generations.
Fearlessly travelling where no media outlet on campus has travelled before is what BU Now is all about. Media types converge into what you see here. We bring to you text, videos, photos, polls, and hopefully soon we’ll have podcasts as well, to tell the complete story and provide our readers with an endless amount of information. What we can also offer is immediacy. We can break a story, and publish content and your comments as soon as we can make it to a computer.
To tell you the truth, I belong in the newspaper generation. Hell, I think I belong in the Colonial American era when a monthly newsletter was considered high media output. I would like a slow, relaxed pace of publishing, but what I like seems to be irrelevant. My goal is to produce what is needed by society today, and what you want is immediacy, quality, and quantity. You want your unbiased news and entertainment; and you want them now. Am I right?
Since we established out site in April, I have made it my mission to learn more about this scary creature of invisible signals and instant communication. I will continue to take steps farther out of my comfort zone as I am mentored by Mike, Eric Sellix, Melissa Milloway, and the other tech gurus on staff. In the meantime, BU Now will continue to strive to bring to you quality content (but the technology stuff will be mostly left up to those listed above).
Today, I think I’ll learn to post a video.