Change is on the horizon.
Regardless of where you stand on the 2nd Amendment and the gun issue in America something amazing just happened in the House of Representatives.
Democrats decided there was going to be a sit-in in the House of Representatives in response to the GOP not allowing a vote on gun reform. When Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.) gave his time at the podium to the Democratic Whip, Rep. Steny Hoyer, (D-Md.), the House went to recess. Given that the majority in the House is Republican and the Speaker of the House, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.), run/govern all actions in the House, this meant that proceedings for the day were done. The cameras in the House that are seen on C-SPAN and elsewhere are owned and operated by the House itself. What you see a feed being sent to C-SPAN. Because of the recess, the feed was cut and supposedly no one would witness the sit-in.
“What we show on C-SPAN is the feed from the House. It is the House’s video, their feed, their audio, their camera angles. It’s the House recording studios that operates the cameras under the control of House majority leadership,” C-SPAN spokesman Howard Mortman said in an interview. Mortman said they were not given warning that the House would be recessed or the feed cut off.”
When the government (at least part of it) attempted to keep something off the airwaves, a cable network picked up a live feed from inside the event and began broadcasting it.
But what happened next, regardless of the outcome or if a vote ever happens, is the real story. Scott Peters, Rep. (D-Calif.) and Beto O’Rourke Rep. (D-Tx.) began to live stream the sit in on Periscope and Facebook Live, respectively.
This allowed C-SPAN to pick up their live feeds and continue the broadcast of the sit-in. As the day went on, CNN and MSNBC followed suit.
Let that sink in if you don’t realize the importance. When the government (at least part of it) attempted to keep something off the airwaves, a cable network picked up a live feed from inside the event and began broadcasting it.
This is big. Not just because the government is involved, but because C-SPAN has just shown the true power of social media and mobile devices.You can broadcast your experiences and thoughts to any who’s willing to listen. Yes, we’ve had social media, blogs and so on for a while, but we’re talking video. No longer is what you’re seeing and hearing delayed or filtered through the user, it’s the live video as it happens without the needs of major distribution. And mainstream media is finally paying attentions.
The structure and business of the media world has already been changing quietly because of social media. It puts a lot of power in the hands of consumers and that scares executives. It disrupts financial and power structures that have existed for decades. You can say what you will about social media, the internet, people being glued to their phones and so on, but a big change is coming because of it. When it comes to media, what we consume and how we consume it will look completely different in the next 5-10 years (being generous).
Think of it this way, we’re all walking around with the technology to transmit live broadcast from anywhere and receive them from anywhere as well. This will take the notion of hyperlocal broadcasting to a whole new level. Joe down the street can do a daily broadcast with officials in the community at his produce stand. And his Facebook followers will be able to ask questions in real time to get answers. No TV studio, no fitting in between programming, no worrying about paying for airtime. Now everyone with a phone is not a trained reporter or journalist and their sources for information may be sketchy at best…but who’s going to fault them? And it’s not like we don’t turn on cable news now to see wall to wall coverage of an event only to find out what they reported at 9am was wrong and at noon they have it right.
Mainstream media will have to adapt and find ways to incorporate live streaming or it will fall behind. We can now experience the world in real-time from real people. As a recent article by Tech Crunch noted – This is the end of the Information Age and the birth of the Experience Age.