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There was a time when Groucho Marx said, ‘I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.’ Everyone laughed at the comment because television didn’t seem very applicable to the way people lived their lives ‘ it was not portable and did not seem practical.
At the time it was believed that television stole the imaginations of people because on the small screens in the corners of rooms across America no one had to listen to the radio and wonder what the world was like that was being described in the ‘theater of the mind’.
Well, times have changed and the growth of video is huge while the statement made by Groucho Marx is laughed at because television has indeed changed the way we view our world.
MTV took the notion of finding meaning in a song to an unusual place where the association you might have with a song was no longer based on a set of personal experiences tied to the song, but rather the video released in support of the single.
Ann Landers once said, ‘Television has proved that people will look at anything rather than each other.’
Together a generation lamented the passing of imagination as a new generation seemed ill equipped to understand the lamentation song. This new generation not only approved of the entertainment value of video they began demanding the video be portable. From home video to DVD players in vehicles and then to portable devices with on demand video streaming the former lamentation has been inculcated into the very fabric of portable life in the 21st century.
Paddy Chayevsky may have understood this shift when these words were penned, ‘[Television is] the menace that everyone loves to hate but can’t seem to live without.’
Just try managing a trip with the family renting a motel room that does not have a TV. This would be thought of as the ultimate punishment.
For this generation on demand video streaming has made its way to computers and portable devices. They can get caught up on sports highlights, news stories the latest real life videos from YouTube or similar video streaming site, visitors can watch music videos and receive video messages from friends and family fully streamed to they downloadable device for viewing whenever they want to watch.
In 1929 the New York Times reported, ‘TV will never be a serious competitor for radio because people must sit and keep their eyes glued on a screen; the average American family hasn’t time for it.’
This sentiment is proof that we can never really adequately explain the power of certain dynamics that fluctuate from one generation to the next. What we believe is either impossible or impractical today may be the next big thing for a new generation.
Video streaming is a growing phenomenon that seems to be the logical extension of television for an on demand and highly mobile world.
Video streaming is taking us places and in the words of Bill Gates, ‘Where do you want to go today?’