PDA

View Full Version : Is video killing the literary star?



satyesu
05-08-2012, 05:20 AM
I'm reading a book for a class studying TV and the US and it talks about how with every advance in communication technology culture shifts to new ways of discourse and-truth-telling that are tellable by that new medium. Text took the place of oral tradition and literature became the medium for both mass entertainment and the domain of scholars both, the author argues.

Do you think the same is happening between literature and TV? Already, it seems, lit is going out of "style" and only for entertainment. Magazines are trying more and more to look more like screens full of images and both they and newspapers are being supplanted by blogs, RSS, Twitter, etc. Those aren't on TV, granted, but are they evidence that the Internet is replacing TV? (Said book was, I think, written before the net)

CrastersBabies
05-08-2012, 05:32 AM
Time will tell, certainly. I don't ever think that television and video will ever replace books, though. Production costs alone would keep that from happening and with books being relatively inexpensive, why would they disappear? They might go full digital.

If anything, people don't talk face to face much it seems because they're always texting. So, in a sense, people drop the phone (audio) and the interaction in-person for txt-sp33k.

Who knows what trend will pop up next?

Soccer Mom
05-08-2012, 05:44 AM
Short answer? No.

Longer version: TV started broadcasting in what? The 40s? They said it would kill the movies, but it hasn't. Books are still around, too. The internet gained popularity sometime in the mid to late 90s. Books are still here. The formating may change as more people adopt digital tech, but "books" aren't going away.

SomethingOrOther
05-08-2012, 05:46 AM
It's an apples to oranges to pears comparison. Literature and TV/film and the internet do different things--e.g., literature is better suited to plumbing the depths of characters' internal worlds--and there will always be people who want what literature does. No matter how many sugary sweet apples and pears (or Skittles and Starbursts) they jam into people's fruit bowls, and hurl at people while their mouths are open, people will want to read eat sharp and tangy oranges, even if it takes some a bit of time to get used to the thick skin.


Twitter

http://i.imgur.com/IIiYE.png

shadowwalker
05-08-2012, 05:54 AM
Paperless society...

Fins Left
05-08-2012, 05:56 AM
I think if text caught on despite the fact that drawing on cave walls was still very available to them, it will probably manage to stick around even in the face of skype.

I'm waiting for l33t sp33k to go mainstream. At that point, I won't be able to make head nor tails of our local newspapers --who seem to have dumped their editors about 6 years ago.

KellyAssauer
05-08-2012, 05:57 AM
Do you think the same is happening between literature and TV? Already, it seems, lit is going out of "style" and only for entertainment. Magazines are trying more and more to look more like screens full of images and both they and newspapers are being supplanted by blogs, RSS, Twitter, etc. Those aren't on TV, granted, but are they evidence that the Internet is replacing TV? (Said book was, I think, written before the net)

There is almost no literature on TV, "Style" has little to nothing to do with good writing and one person's online soapbox will never replace real news...

So, No. All are different.

James D. Macdonald
05-08-2012, 06:04 AM
Is video killing the literary star?

No.

Architectus
05-08-2012, 06:05 AM
I think books will mostly go digital because it's cheaper to publish. More money for everyone. Also with natural readers like Kindle, it feels good on the eyes.

utopianmonk
05-08-2012, 06:06 AM
I am a huge fan of books and serialized television. I like both because of the unique ways they offer to tell stories. (And, truthfully, TV is still in the beginning stages of telling long stories, which I think is where its greatest strength lies.) I would never want TV to replace books, because books offer certain things TV programs can't. At the same time, I don't want TV to go away, because it's also a great new medium that should be embraced.

They're different things. As society advances, people think of new ways to tell stories. That doesn't make the old ones obsolete. It just makes our options for entertainment much more plentiful, and that's a good thing.

Also, I think text "took over" oral tradition because it's simply easier to write down your information so it isn't forgotten. It's not quite the same as losing the tradition, either, because campfire stories and such are still quite alive, and you hear different versions everywhere you go. Writing them down just made them easier to pass along.

Soccer Mom
05-08-2012, 06:09 AM
...Do you think the same is happening between literature and TV? Already, it seems, lit is going out of "style" and only for entertainment....

What's wrong with literature for entertainment? I don't see how that correlates to it going out of style. I read primarily for entertainment. Let me assure you I'm doing my part to stimulate the economy and save publishing. I think I read between 200-300 novels every year.

KellyAssauer
05-08-2012, 06:10 AM
I think books will mostly go digital because it's cheaper to publish.

Note: According to the larger houses it's almost the exact same costs to publish digital or traditional.
Most all the costs are in house expenses.

Architectus
05-08-2012, 06:17 AM
Note: According to the larger houses it's almost the exact same costs to publish digital or traditional.
Most all the costs are in house expenses.


That can't be right. If a traditional publishing company shut down their buildings, presses, etc, and only used a very small office, they would save tons of money.

1. No more paying as many employees.
2. No more paper cost.
3. No more ink cost.
4. No more huge electric bills.

etc.

Going totally digital means you only have to pay for advertising, a very tiny office, and a few employees. In fact, editors and such can work from home.

SomethingOrOther
05-08-2012, 06:25 AM
That can't be right. If a traditional publishing company shut down their buildings, presses, etc, and only used a very small office, they would save tons of money.

1. No more paying as many employees.
2. No more paper cost.
3. No more ink cost.
4. No more huge electric bills.

etc.

Going totally digital means you only have to pay for advertising, a very tiny office, and a few employees. In fact, editors and such can work from home.

If this thread gets derailed over this same old digital books vs. print books pricing thing, it'll somehow manage to eclipse the pedophilia derail (really) in this thread (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=244355) as the worst derail this month.

Raventongue
05-08-2012, 06:29 AM
Even if video killed the literary star here, it wouldn't kill it entirely. Every day people around the world who previously had no access to books get them, or who were previously illiterate learn to read.

Soccer Mom
05-08-2012, 06:30 AM
Yeah, we aren't going back into that ebook vs. print cost debate. Anyone who wants to debate that right now can go find an all night coffee house, 'kay?

KellyAssauer
05-08-2012, 06:35 AM
That can't be right.


http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=239597 (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7108542&postcount=24)

leahzero
05-08-2012, 06:56 AM
I think if text caught on despite the fact that drawing on cave walls was still very available to them, it will probably manage to stick around even in the face of skype.

This is flippin' brilliant.

James D. Macdonald
05-08-2012, 07:01 AM
That can't be right.

It is right.

But it's also off-topic.

mephet
05-08-2012, 08:51 AM
No. Books and movied tell stories in very different ways, and have different strenghts or weaknesses. A movie can't give you the experience a book can. The same is true the other way around. As for the internet, twitter, skype... they are not story telling methods. TV might move onto the internet, but it as a medium cannot be replaced by social networks or blogs. Again, they don't give you the same experience or even serve the same purpose, which means they can't just easily replace each other.

tko
05-08-2012, 09:51 AM
How many movies are based on totally originally screen plays?

OK, now how many books are adaptations?

Need I say any more?

ravenmuse
05-08-2012, 01:08 PM
New media certainly influence older forms of story-telling. Have you ever read a book from the 19th century and been a little impatient with all the excess of description? It's because television and film has made attention spans shorter. I once attended a workshop on radio drama as part of being a finalist in a competition and one of the producers commented on how the art of radio drama changed subtly in reaction to television. (That had been in 2001 - bear in mind South Africa only got television in the mid-1970s so some of the people involved in radio then still remembered a time before television. ) Likewise, books changed as television reshaped their way of perceiving things. Now digital media is also exerting an influence. It is said that most teenagers now do the majority of their reading on phones... which has led to the advent of the so-called cell phone novels. And yet, oral story-telling still exists.... What else would you call the stand-up comedian or the rap artist? They are using new forms of an ancient tradition. The same goes for reading events that some authors participate in (myself included)... It's the tradition, just wearing a different costume....

Once!
05-08-2012, 02:04 PM
Ah, the Buggles! It's 1979 and in the middle of the spitty weary punk stuff, we get this ...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iwuy4hHO3YQ

Technology does bring changes. Handwritten texts made the oral tradition out-moded. The printing press did for monks hand writing with quills. Kindle/ ipad might eventually conquer print (but not for a long while yet).

Television killed off music hall, but it couldn't defeat cinema. Colour mostly killed black and white. Talkies squashed the silents. CDs defeated vinyl, but are in turn being challenged by downloads. VHS begat DVDs begat blu-ray.

But ... there have always been stories and there probably always will be. Formats may change. Our need for stories doesn't.

One idea made me smile. Take a digital download of the text of the Iliad. Stick it on your i-thingie with white bootlaces dangling from your ears. Boot up a text to speech synthesiser. Lean back as the i-thingie whispers in your ears about proud Achilles in his tent.

And think just how far we have (and haven't) come from the days when you would pay a bard to recite the poem from memory.

Of course, the irony about "video killed the radio star" was that it was primarily a record. Which meant that it was played a lot on the radio ...

And our modern technology means that I could google it in a heartbeat and be watching the video seconds later. Technology isn't killing the literary star. If anything it is making it easier for us to access writing across the ages.

OtavioCaetano
05-08-2012, 02:27 PM
I don't think so

Lady Ice
05-08-2012, 03:55 PM
Literature and film have a symbiotic relationship. Film needs books to adapt and film adaptations give the books publicity.

folkchick
05-08-2012, 04:03 PM
"Save the trees! Save the trees!" Hands protester a Kindle. Protestor writhes with disgust. "Don't save the trees! Don't save the trees!"

Sadly, I've tested myself and read more (and faster) with a real book. It's also a nice break from all the electronics I find myself using on a constant basis.

Once!
05-08-2012, 04:09 PM
Let's be entirely clear. A kindle is a book. It's a super book, a mega book, a book with knobs on. But it's still a book. Words on paper via the medium of ink. Just a different kind of book.

Someone still has to write those books.

I don't think this thread is really about whether you like Kindles or not.

folkchick
05-08-2012, 04:23 PM
You're right. Actually, if I'm not mistaken, many Kindles have the ability to allow its users to play games and surf the internet. Technically it's not a book, it's a book reading device. The actual books are electronic downloads able to be read on said device. But yes, you're right, real books aren't just paper. I feel like a jerk now for having worded it that way. Always learning.

lorna_w
05-08-2012, 04:26 PM
No, not soon, not for entertainment/story-telling. If TV was going to replace reading, it would have done so by 1965. Some books still sell a million copies or more. Literacy in my country is the highest it has ever been. However, for news, yes; moreover, it's a done deal. The newspaper/news magazine that one held in one's hands is in its death throes. Start carving the tombstone.

I think it's likely the net will replace broadcast TV as we knew it for the past 50 years. Will this change the nature of discourse? Yes, it already has. It has democratized it, most notably. Non-edited raw video footage is a vastly different thing than manipulated "news" that was often propaganda more than truth. Laws are being passed against that trend (more and more jurisdictions in the US, for instance, make it a crime to videotape the police in action, and in many countries, the net is an outlaw's realm only), but I don't know that raw truth, considering the technologies in everyone's hands, is an easily containable thing. The net has also made it possible to be very specialized in one's interests. TV made my big sprawling nation a whole community in many ways; everybody may not have known the truth, but they shared the same delusions. Even regional accents largely faded away. TV pushed everyone towards a bland middle. Now, search engines record your political preferences and, without your asking, quit showing you sites that will upset (or educate) you. So there's going to be a polarized truth, or truths that aren't shared, more and more. In the long run, that may change what fictions are demanded of writers. The net will allow more sorts of fiction to be disseminated, so there may be more passionate niche audiences.

randi.lee
05-08-2012, 04:29 PM
I've seen movies that have made me want to go back and read the book. I'll use Hunger Games as an example: Given the amount of Hunger Games books & merchandise I've seen all over my local Barnes & Noble recently, I'd say that, in some cases, video might even help lit!

Architectus
05-08-2012, 08:54 PM
It is right.

But it's also off-topic.


I guess it is off topic, but I'd have to see the bills from two publishing companies, one all digital, one totally traditional to see for myself.

cmi0616
05-08-2012, 10:28 PM
I don't think books will ever "die", per se, but I don't think there's no doubt that we are seeing a shift away from books and towards all these newer, more interactive forms of technology. The youth today shows a largely disturbing trend of apathy towards books and writing, and I have to wonder what will happen to the publishing industry in say, 20 or 30 years.

I think it's a somewhat lonely thing to lock yourself in a room with a book while there's a world going on outside, and as we make that world more accessible via the e-mail, instant message, and social networking sites, it becomes an increasingly less attractive choice to the kids of today to say "instead of talking to so, and so, who is only a few click away, I think I'm going to crack open a novel."

But there are definitley kids who still read, and I think as they shift into adulthood the number of them who read will increase, as it usually does, and although literature will never be the great medium it once was, it will still be prominent enough.

wishingonasupernova
05-09-2012, 02:17 AM
Television and film are regularly putting out ridiculously high quality products now such as Mad Men and the HBO dramas and films like 2011's Everything Must Go (ironically based on a very insubstantial short story by Raymond Chandler) and Win/Win which have a very literary feel to them, whereas 10 years ago and earlier that wasn't true at all except for the rare brilliant film, and if you wanted to experience profound and realistic character development fiction was your best option, so there's probably a lot of truth in it.

Though with the recent sensation of books like the Dragon Tattoo, Harry Potter, Twilight, etc series being turned into high profile TV and Film stuff, it might actually open opportunities for stardom to the very elite who are churning out the most accessible work.

wishingonasupernova
05-09-2012, 02:20 AM
I don't think books will ever "die", per se, but I don't think there's no doubt that we are seeing a shift away from books and towards all these newer, more interactive forms of technology. The youth today shows a largely disturbing trend of apathy towards books and writing, and I have to wonder what will happen to the publishing industry in say, 20 or 30 years.

I think it's a somewhat lonely thing to lock yourself in a room with a book while there's a world going on outside, and as we make that world more accessible via the e-mail, instant message, and social networking sites, it becomes an increasingly less attractive choice to the kids of today to say "instead of talking to so, and so, who is only a few click away, I think I'm going to crack open a novel."

But there are definitley kids who still read, and I think as they shift into adulthood the number of them who read will increase, as it usually does, and although literature will never be the great medium it once was, it will still be prominent enough.

Yeah, I think the immediately satisfying quick fix options like internet/video games/phone are what will really kill the book as a medium, rather than the increased availability of high quality video recorded material like I discussed in above post (tho the increased quality and accessibility of the TV and movies certainly has an enormous impact as well).

It's shocking the amount of people that will admit to things like "I haven't read a book in years" nowadays. And also disheartening how little I read myself nowadays despite knowing it is one of the most fulfilling solitary activities I can undertake. I still finish multiple books every year of my life, at least, but at the moment I'm 50 or less pages simultaneously into about 15 books and can't seem to get myself back into the rhythm of sticking w/ one book and reading it regularly until completion.