A tribute to and a lament for Marshall McLuhan.Â Five days a week, Tuesday through Saturday,Â I present one of McLuhanâ€™s observations and talk about its relevance today.Â 300 ideas. 300 days.Â 300 posts.
Marshall McLuhan (1960, age 48/49). The question is:
Why should the sending or receiving of a telegram seem more dramatic than the ringing of a telephone?
Me (August, 2010, age 58).Â The sending or receiving of what?
Anyone who has sent or received a telegram can attest to the truth of McLuhanâ€™s observation.
Unfortunately, many of the readers of this blog may find the truth of McLuhanâ€™s observation difficult to grasp because they have never sent or received a telegram.Â Â It is also possible that they have never heard a telephone ring dramatically.Â Which raises the question: What is todayâ€™s dramatic equivalent of the telegram?Â I suspect that the answer is: there isnâ€™t one.Â Which raises another question for your information:Â Is the history of media impossible?
Cordially, Marshall and Me
Philip Marchand, Marshall McLuhan: The Medium and the Messenger, 1989, p. 150.