Conversations With Media

On the July 27 episode of TWiG, Jeff Jarvis dropped a quote I hadn’t heard before but thought was interesting enough to write down.

James Carey, who is a scholar and who unfortunately died a few years ago – was an expert on journalism and media – says that it’s media’s job not to inform the conversation but to be informed by the conversation that we’re having.

This was on the heels of Jarvis’ #fuckyouwashington rant. And the Carey quote serves as an interesting meta point about the tide technology is bringing in.

The odd thing is that just minutes before Jarvis quoted Carey, I was thinking to myself how funny it is that Jarvis has risen into such an influential role. He’s a blowhard. A self-described one, but still one nonetheless.

He’s a guy that goes too far, too often. But yet I still listen to him because he has his ear pressed firmly to the train tracks of topics I want to know about. I come back to listen to Jarvis because of what news he brings, not to hear what he thinks about it.

If he gets upsets about something, I want to know what it is because I’ve learned about myself that when he’s upset about a topic, I probably am interested. Even if I don’t agree.

He’s having the conversation we’re having.