Articles Tagged ‘New media’

How Social Media Overtook Legacy Media

Friday, September 16th, 2011


On September 3rd, 1786, a man from Peter’s Creek, Pennsylvania wrote to his local newspaper, commenting that “I see by your last paper that you have not been crammed with news.” The Pittsburgh Gazette had been printing the news since July 29th of that same year, but Gilbert Gichen was the first to have his comments on the newspaper published for other readers to see. While this was not the first newspaper in the United States (the first continuous publication was The Boston News-Letter in 1704), it did play a significant role in print journalism.

In the New Media era (social media, blogging, online journalism), Gilbert Gichen’s contribution seems somewhat trivial. Ideally, a few of you readers will do the same sort of thing under this post, although hopefully without the same trenchant criticism. But in the days of Legacy Media, Gichen was a trailblazer; a fresh dissenting voice. And it was this type of criticism that birthed media as we see it today – a tightly woven network of professional journalism and public contribution.

How the Switch to New Media Impacted Business

Nowhere is the transformation from Legacy Media to New Media more apparent than in the business card. In 1895, Charles M. Wright, an attorney from Wapello, Iowa had a set of business cards made to advertise his services. Mr. Wright had little contact information to include on his card, sticking to the only business card principles that he had at the time – his experience, city of residence, name, and profession.

Erica Swallow of provides an example of a business card from New Media, with a laundry list of social media addresses, and all of the contact information missing on Mr. Wright’s. And while Wright used his own image to create an impression on his potential client’s minds, Jessy Yancey of Tennessee Home and Farm decided to use social media icons to achieve the same thing.

And what a microcosm of the evolution of business and business cards. While Wright used his face to give his business that personal touch, Yancey’s card is anything but personal, instead filtering all contacts through the company social media pages. In the past, few people would utter the phrase “It’s not personal, it’s just business” because it was seldom true. In the age of New Media, the phrase has become a cliche.
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