I caught the recent story in the New York Times about Twitter feed, The Media is Dying. This is a feed that is dedicated to charting the employment status of PR industry professionals. According to the story the site was started to monitor “hirings and firings”. Be honest, like watching racing for the crashes, it’s about the firings…and there are plenty of them right now.
I can’t help but think this sort of use of social media is a bad idea. You might say “Phil, lighten up.”, noting that it’s no worse than the many gallows sites out there right now. Sites like stiffs.com, youbettheirlife.com and a host of others. And believe me, as the creator of ComicTwit, I have shared more than a few bits if humor that qualify in this camp.
This is different. To me it’s a bit more disconcerting. Aside from our morbid habit of seeking a bit of entertainment out of the suffering of others, no matter how unemployed, old, or dead, this one highlights and consciously or unconsciously, celebrates the struggle of an entire industry.
The media landscape is certainly changing, but I question if it is wise to act as vultures circling the victims of that change? As a radio broadcaster (The talk or radio dying began over half a century ago.) I can tell you that has a lasting impact on the medium and its players.
As one who is grateful to be part of Social Media, an incredibly young industry, I don’t want to be seen as dancing on any industry’s grave. I’d rather look for the opportunity to show what this new media can do to help traditional media and the people that are dealing with its rapidly changing landscape every day.