“New media, as a category, began with the invention of the printing press- not the internet” Jean Baudrillard
Jean Baudrillard believes that new media started with the invention of the printing press. He thinks that Gutenberg’s invention helped spread the ideals of new media. Baudrillard also believes that the printing press created a whole new format of media that differed from old media. However I feel that Baudrillard ‘s argument is weak and lacking substance as it is not possible that Gutenberg’s printing press created a new media format. Old media mainly consists of literature, poetry, art and other manmade or written expression. The printing press was only a faster delivery system of old media. New media appears to be very different to old media. New media is merely a consumer product designed to attract new users and customers. New media uses colourful and exciting packaging, just like advertising agencies, in order to attract consumers.
When we compare old and new media we can obtain o clear overview and contrast of the two. Both concepts centre on the theory of social agency. With old media the social agency is strongly based on the media corporations who exert pivotal control over old media industries, such as print media. However in new media it is much harder to point out the figures of control. Interactivity is a large part of new media. Consumers of new media can interact and leave feedback, even voice their personal opinions through online blogs. Because of this it is much harder to determine the focal points of the social agency. Also new media is far more efficient as an entire online library is available at the user’s finger tips. This in my opinion makes new media a far better package and format than old media.
The printing press is focused at artists and open minded people in the quest for knowledge. This separates it from new media, especially as new media centres on the ideas of entertainment. It is clear that there is a huge difference between old and new media. The printing press only reproduced items in analogue form and thus cemented its possession strongly in old media. I don’t agree with Jean Baudrillard statement mentioned at the start of this piece because I found it quiet difficult to uncover logical meaning in it. Therefore I believe that new media began with the advent of the internet.