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I think McLuhan's ideas on Television as a medium are not so much antiquated as they are lacking complete information. This is not an apologist's sentiment, but more an observation. Had McLuhan been privy to our perspective of computer networking, I have little doubt his views on television would change. This is fairly obvious and McLuhan himself understood how the cutting edge eventually becomes dull by not only the course of time, but the "leaps" made to restore the distorted sense-ratios.

I remember an interview with McLuhan where he talked about the failure of support for the Vietnam War, and his response was: "Well, that's because you're trying to depict a hot war on a cold medium."

Which, at the time makes sense, but viewed through today's lens, seems antiquated. Comparatively, television is a much hotter medium than what we in our present time are used to (the internet). In this regard, I consider television a transition state; an imperfect medium, in the sense that while it cooled the central authoritarian voice and while it involved the audience more so than "lectured" media like cinema or print, it still left the audience mute, so it is incomplete in this regard.

Of course, now we're getting an interesting phenomenon where instead of "forced listening" we have "unheard voices." More chattering; less reading.

The advantage, I believe, may be self-awareness. Nothing causes one to be quite so self-aware as being before an audience. Self-awareness, but moreover insecurity, like exposing the voyeur.

A brief entry to collect some thoughts.
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