Thursday, February 01, 2007

Culture Gap Widened By New Media

Well folks, it's official: the masses are scared of... well... just about everything! Especially technology -- when law enforcement and their speaker system (traditional media) have NO idea what they're dealing with. After the Boston Techno-Fright fest of the last couple of days, we can see the writing on the wall, though. From

On the one hand, Boston police and city officials demonstrated how ignorant they are about pop culture, guerrilla marketing, and technology, and then got embarrassed, which is why they're so angry now.

What I do know from experience, that may offer insight into this matter, is that every (U.S.) disaster scene I've ever been at (as media), and there have been plenty in my long, if somewhat undistinguished, old-media career, the blue collars get to play God. And it makes 'em happy as a pig in shit.

Normal communications, routines and processes come to a screeching halt, and the good 'ole boy-law enforcement-blue-collar crowd takes over. And maybe this is a good thing in times of crisis, but tell that to the people who, after a hurricane for instance, are anxious to get back to their property to assess damages as soon as they can. Forget it! You cain't have it until the blue-collars say you can.

Just apply those "methods" to say... oh... a nuclear disaster site. You're smart people out there, you blog readers, you get the point.

One other note, I once saw one of those LED promos, under an overpass somewhere. Can't remember what city, maybe it was Atlanta, but it was at night and the "thing" seemed to be easily and immediately comprehended as a promotional device, or at least something kinda cute. Then again, it was dark, when a cartoonish figure would be clearly visible as techno-graffiti.

Beware "cartoon" figures lurking in society that don't make themselves obvious. They might scare the little people, and the off-the-gridders, if you're not careful.


Oreo said...

I knew there was some reason I liked reading your stuff. I watch the show, so when I saw the 'device' I immediately recognized the character. For the whole city to come to a complete halt is utterly ridiculous, but maybe an e-mail when the campaign starts might not be a bad idea.

Grayson said...

Hon, most law enforcement folks can't even access email, whether because of policy or personal limitations. I recently had to talk to several people with APD, and they even have a cyber crime unit, and they had no idea what a blog was. So if they'd even read the email notice, who's to say?

You'd have to seriously "old-school" that campaign... and that means you need people with "old school" media/PR experience working side-by-side with these guerilla marketing types.

Dan Greenfiled at Bernaisesource and Earthlink has an excellent post on this "new media" personnel situation just this week:

VictoratGaImproper said...

Hairilirious video. You should have been at the Macon Peace Rally when Bush came politicing for whatshisname/Mac Collins this fall.

The authorities were trying to convince the sign toters that they did not have the same freedom-to- roam-rights as the general public.
The sign folks didn't buy the spin.

I think the Burns campaign is still trying to sort out the amount of reimbusement that the U.S. taxpayers should be paid for the Bush II visit.