This week's pick offers some interesting hindsight at once-emerging technology--like online "forums" where people discuss things like rock music, and new tools like "e-mail"--back when journalists still had to provide definitions and clarifications for things like "electronic mail."
Taken from the July 7, 1994, issue of the Observer, one Robert Wilonsky openly ponders in this piece if in the future rock critics won't be rendered obsolete by the emerging trends of fans "bypassing the traditional rock press" by sharing news, gossip and bootlegs amongst themselves in on-line "forums" and "folders." Seems in '94, Pearl Jam fans were quite the tech-embracing bunch.
Robert predicts that a move to the digital "uncensored" world by things like punk fanzines is a natural progression. And, the piece even rightly hints at the compression of information--though Robert makes no mention of a 140-character limit--writing that some believed that "as the use of electronic mail (E-mail) increases, as more and more computer users begin sending messages back and forth across the modem," we will be forced to express ourselves "in the fewest amount of words possible."
We didn't include the scans of the full article because, well, the rants from the on-line forums that comprised the rest of the story weren't that interesting. But the article is--if only for a dial-up flashback looking to the future of music on the "daunting Internet."
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