Louder, smaller, shorter

Our pictures are smaller and our messages more brief, yet our voices are bigger. Those are perfectly compatible: in each instance, the consequence of change (whether planned and imposed, or noticed and taken advantage of) is an increase in sharing, or sharability.

Cell phone conversations are shouted, not because the technology requires it, but because people want to be overheard or don’t care if they are overheard, or because they adopt the style common to their peers and, alas, to most of the rest of society.

People take pictures with cell phones, not to do so surreptitiously, but to do so broadly and blatantly. The pictures thus produced are small, not large. Again, the underlying purpose is not to hide or otherwise minimize the images, but to make them more easily and quickly sharable.

Our messages — twitter and “status” notes on Facebook, e.g. — are not condensed as if to please Anton Chekov or E. B. White, but to get them out faster and more often.

So. Are our voices, our photos, or our prose therefor any better? Maybe it’s only me, but I think the answer is no.

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