I started to realize that the problem might be with the Internet. With songs so easy to download, and with it being so easy to post your own original content, the value of entertainment has been diminished. That’s a direct result of the Internet.
“Video Killed The Radio Star” was the first music video played on MTV. It was a new era, one where the greater technology replaced the previous technology. Newspapers, books, arcades, movie theaters – they’re all struggling. In each instance, I think that the Internet does it better. Yet, where are the new stars with this new technology? Michael Jackson and MTV fed into each others success. After more than a decade with the Internet, I haven’t seen the same equivalent. Instead, I’m see the reverse.
This decade seems to be a sea of sequels, Batman, Spiderman, Superman, Batman, Spiderman… what… we don’t have any new superheroes? Being patriotic, being honorable, that seems to be a common theme of the 80’s – I only needed to watch GI Joe or the Thundercats to know that. I was spoon fed high ideals. How does that happen online? How do you instill a similar sense of morality when users are a click away from hardcore porn? The Internet doesn’t have a program schedule. How does the Internet build culture when users could simply spend their time looking at funny pictures of cats all day?
If the Internet is responsible for the mediocrity of modern pop culture, how can it be fixed? I think that the online world could use more honor and more camaraderie. Illegal downloading is a problem. How are you supposed to sell 100+ million albums if too many people would just steal it? The same goes for websites. I don’t like it when people brag about using ad block. That just makes online publishers go away. If people don’t want to pay for quality content, then they’ll ultimately end up with what they pay for. Yet, that’s only a tiny part of the problem. Most people seeming willing to buy quality content that they enjoy. Otherwise, VCRs and tape recorders would have hindered Michael Jackson’s career.
I do think that the Internet is hurting pop culture, but I think that the problem will be resolved once the technology matures. There’s a certain combination that builds a superstar – luck, skill, determination – whatever it is, it can occur online. It’s up to artists and producers to figure out how to make it happen. Will there be another culture boom? I think there will be, but hopefully it won’t take until 2020 to happen. Otherwise, it might be called “The Roaring 20’s Part 2.”