Have you, along with me, been relishing the little example of left-right détente that we’ve witnessed on this blog in recent days? Gives me hope.

And it gets me to thinking — so much of what we debate about communication these days has to do with what we don’t like, what disappoints us daily and what’s cartwheeling us toward the general dereliction of all we hold dear. I guess if bad news hikes TV news ratings and newsstand sales, I suppose blogging about the bad gets you more hits.

So here’s a challenge. Can you name something you see in communication now — PR, news media, marketing, what have you — that you like? What’s heartening to you and gives you a sense that, just perhaps, the handbasket might not actually be headed hellward?

I’ll start. I like what the Internet has done and is doing for making consumer information and opinion more accessible and transparent.  If it was ever possible to rely on marketing hype to sell stuff, it’s far less so than it was even 10 years ago. And that’s penciling out to trends of more marketing openness, more backing-up of promises and more selling accountability. Good.

Your turn.

— Hornseth

6 thoughts on “Good!

  1. jl says:

    Ok, true confession… I know it’s fashionable to dump on reality TV, but I love it. Yes, I know it’s not real, and it’s trashy and manipulative. But I’ve had more meaningful conversations with my kids about character and values, and lackthereof, while watching shows like Wife Swap, Survivor, The Simple Life, Joe Millionaire, The Biggest Loser, Nanny 911 etc. than I ever have watching critically acclaimed non-reality TV. Those kinds of conversations seem awkward and forced during the course of every day life, but they happen quite naturally when watching reality TV.

  2. bbenidt says:

    Wow, Joe, you actually make me open my mind (OK, just a little) on reality TV. The kid angle is very cool. I’ve seen my wife watch this stuff with her niece and have the same kinds of conversations.

    I like that the web is somewhat self-correcting. Our reader Mike features the WikiScanner that has caught companies — and the CIA and the Catholic Church — editing negative stuff out of their Wikipedia entries. I find it scary that history is turned over to the masses to write (I’m an elitist, yes), but I love that bullshit detectors are still alive and well on the web. And the web gives a forum where little Davids can take a swing at Goliaths.

  3. jl says:

    Here’s another unconventional nomination. I like all the channel choices on cable TV There’s only one thing in life I have ever disagreed with Bruce Springsteen about: “57 channels (and nothin’ is on).”

    I think The Boss wrote that before TiVO. With the aid of TiVO, it’s easy to always have a ready library of stuff – The Daily Show, Frontline, Wifeswap, NOVA, sports, C-span interviews, The Office, CNN On the Media, Myth Busters, a presidential primary debate, Garden Police, Lost, Great Performances, West Wing re-runs, Iron Chef, movies of all ratings, etc. And we can also help make sure the kids have something worthwhile on there too.

    Yes, there is mostly crap on. But when we have that rare spare hour when we are able and willing to veg, we can go to the DVR library to find something to fit our mood and limited time. Because of that, I actually don’t think that TV has ever been better in my lifetime. (But I watch it less than ever and end up deleting most of what I record!)

  4. I have to agree with jl about the beauty of DVR. When you work the night shift, it is tough to see any show you might be interested in without DVR. My previous roommate introduced me to it and I know I can’t enjoy a sitcom or an athletic event without recording it.

    One thing I also appreciate is how news shows are either streaming on the Web or they are making podcasts/videocasts that can be downloaded.

    One of my guilty pleasures is viewing Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer. I like the interviews and I appreciate Schieffer’s work. The only problem is I never wake up to watch the show on Sundays. But have no fear, I just download the podcast of the show and listen to it during work. Isn’t the Internet grand?

  5. Kelly Groehler says:

    Hello. My name is Kelly Groehler, and I’m an online music addict.

    Since first signing up with iTunes in 2004, I have purchased 504 songs that I wouldn’t have paid money for, had I needed to purchase the albums they came from. And I like that I don’t have to watch TRL to get my music video fix., Yahoo! Music, iTunes, YouTube, etc. means I can skip the reality crap programming (sorry, I have no love for reality television) and most commercials.

    This is nirvana for my inner rock music child. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to download another single… Thnks Fr Th Mmrs…

  6. Anyone who was around a newspaper copy desk after 11 pm in the old days knows about the calls for help settling an argument.

    Those were mostly from bars and usually about sports, but they had millions of cousin conversations that were difficult to settle. Today, any argument that hinges on a fact can be moved forward more easily. Too bad there’s less care about the facts, though.

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