Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Mass media pac-man

This post is a work in progress...

I heard that Tower Records is in trouble... which is a shame. I did appreciate the fact that they often featured local artists on their shelves... that and they had the best selection outside of those crap merry-go-round stores in the mall.

I've been reading this fab blog, infotechonomics... the author pretty much summed up my fears:

Media companies tended to be run by feisty entrepreneurs who were fiercely independent watchdogs of the public trust, purveyors of public taste, tabloids of public trends...they had to be, just to stay alive. Now they are not. They are run by bureaucracies, with more operating procedures and consultants telling them they cannot than innovative ideas for how they can, obligated to perform up to the expectations of their guidance and Wall Street's. Along the way, they became risk-averse, hits-driven PACman* players.

For the most part as a consumer I feel restricted by the tastes of the masses and corporations unslakable desire to quench their never-ending thirst (gee... I can't believe I said that... I just isolated myself from the rest of the population. This seems to be something that I"m doing well lately). i DON'T want to seem snide or rude, but I don't often want to be restricted to what that one sector of society wants. People would argue with me and say... you don't have to buy that crap, if you really want something 'different' go to Good Will or the garage sale down the street. I better get on the antique wagon soon to get the items I want, because it looks like the early 80's is next on the vintage tour (god, I hate fucking rainbows and turquoise). That's fine... but somehow it seems to me that we're loosing out the variety that we get from having more smaller businesses around. They might argue that large corporate chains automatically provide variety of choices because they can afford to stock variety. Though we all know that for the most part they are in for making large amounts of cash and the only way to do that is to aim at the larger groups.

I'm sure that there are still plenty of scouts sent out by companies... to the recesses of society, because every now and then mass-marketing hits a home-run with subculture. In a sense, I've always been fascinated with the ecology of consumerism.


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