“Conversation is the vehicle for change. We test our ideas. We hear our own voice in a concert with another. And inside those pauses of listening, we approach new territories of thought. A good argument, call it a discussion, frees us.”Terry T. Williams.
America’s PEW Research Group state that the world has undergone four technology revolutions since they began studying digital technology over more than a decade. I have been a keen observer and student of these digital revolutions, since my university days.
Let me name these revolutions for you, in case you weren’t aware that they have been closely studied over the last decade and more. They’ve had such a profound impact on people’s lives.
Whether it’s in industry or home and family life, the intersection of those personal and public worlds and the digital revolutions have left few untouched in the developed world, as well as the developing world. In many ways, it has dramatically reshaped how we interact with each other. How we communicate and how we live out our lives.
These changes, disruptions, their impact, and how innovation happens in it, and what types of innovation we’re talking about, and how it improves lives and skills, is what I’m fascinated by, and deeply interested in. That is one of the main themes that I will attempt to curate mostly, and put pen to paper myself when time and life permits, and share that knowledge with you. But first let me come back to the four digital revolutions on Planet Earth.
First, the rise of the Internet and the introduction of broadband is the first digital revolution changing how we communicate, work and play. Broadband replaced the slow dial up speeds, enabling people to spend more time online, do more things online, and become content creators in the process. Amazing, huh?
Second, mobile phone connectivity transforming people’s ability to be reachable 24/7 for work, play and family.
Third, the rise of social media and its social networking function, ever pervasive. One of the biggest impacts for the world of people, they say, is the blurring of the private and public lives of people on social with the merging of family, colleagues and friends on social media accounts. My observation is that the blurring of lines has taken away people’s privacy, profoundly reducing our ability to lead private lives and keep work separate from our personal lives.
And the fourth digital revolution? The Internet of Things. It has changed the way business and communities of people and families interact with each other, thanks to devices that collect data and connect to the Internet or a network. Even if you don’t know what the term refers to, you are most likely surrounded by the Internet of things every single day of your life from transportation to downloading an app on your smartphone, to eating out, or simply watching a video or live TV program on your smart TV.
Wide-eyed, I rode through these digital revolutions as a front line passenger aka a writer first, then a journalist, witnessing global events like the Arab Spring Uprising of 2010. We used Facebook as a social platform for university students. We could actually see each other’s postings in real time. That was back then. Now it’s all changed on Facebook and its billions of users. Its audience is everyone, everywhere, and the lines between work, family and private are very blurry.
As a university student between 1998 to 2000, digital technology and multimedia was part of my journalism degree programme. So I was constantly fascinated since then at the rapid changes taking place across industries like photography, news reporting, broadcast TV and screening. Now disruption is the norm. And its impact on industry, including news media, will continue.
My belief is that to survive and thrive in this Age of Disruption and Change, one ought to embrace change and disruption with enthusiasm. And most importantly, embrace the role of being a learner, a student of disruption, regardless of length of tenure or seniority. There’s great benefits in learning new skills and adopting change. In order to do that well, I think it’s important to know what’s going on and have access to thinkers and researchers who are informed and constantly learning too.
By that I mean, curious and open minded. Willing to learn new things and question the status quo. Ready to hear new insights and different perspectives on the communication challenges and dilemmas we face in the West, right here in the South Pacific region.
Here, I curate the latest academic and industry research and thinking and experiences at the intersection of technology, social media and legislation.
I’m interested in the idea of innovation in news media and communication, particularly how organisations and governments respond to disruption, and the types of innovation and the impacts.
How do they keep pace with shifting audience behaviour? Do companies and their communications staff really understand the challenges and threats of a rapidly changing media and information landscape ? I want to know because I want to keep learning and finding ways to do things better. I like being fully informed and prepared, where-ever possible, as a communicator.
I am particularly interested in how those questions and answers play out in Australia, New Zealand, Asia and South Pacific region. Some of the content here is written by myself. Others are research and columns written by academic researchers, professors and writers out in the field and republished here, under a creative commons license. As always, permission has been granted before use and work is appropriately attributed.
A former broadcast and multimedia/digital journalist and long time writer, present day media relations and communications specialist.
Most recent roles: former head of communications for Māori Television in Aotearoa New Zealand. Former acting internal communications manager and former acting external communications manager at Middlemore Hospital and former journalist for Pacific Media Network based in Auckland. Juggling it all between 2018 and 2019.
Between 2017 and 2015, I worked as the senior marketing lead for the New Zealand Prime Minister’s Education Excellence Awards programme, based in Wellington and Nelson.
I was a published chapter writer for a HarperCollins publication on maternal health before I became a journalist. My journalism background: former freelance print newspaper columnist (New Zealand Herald), TV and radio news journalist, producer, radio news editor, chief writer for Manukau City Council’s citywide newspaper. Also worked as a speechwriter for public officials.
I hold a bachelor’s degree in communications studies, journalism was my major. My degree programme also included digital technology, multimedia, intercultural relations, as well as TV and video production.
A graduate of Auckland University of Technology (AUT), Aotearoa New Zealand, this page abandons any rule to write about myself in the third person.