From January’s perch I have decided to take a look back at 2012. It was certainly a year of media, where companies struggled to find their footing in Web 3.0, where mobile became the buzz word and visual media–both videos and photos–proved there is no end to creativity or time to view everything from lovely photos on Pinterest to videos of every length and topic across the World Wide Web.
Google published its Zeitgeist, a list of lists of trending topics throughout the world. Google’s top ten images included mostly pop singers and the iPhone. I am not sure what that says about our collective tastes.
Over the weekend, newspapers from the New York Times (and online) to our local Journal News published their year in pictures as television stations ran their video montages we always called, “The Year Ender.”
I have my own year-ender rolling in my head. Beyond family, it is filled with images of political campaigns debated, won and lost, binders full of women, Big Bird and Elmo, Olympic athletes competing in London, wars raging in Iran and Afghanistan with more body bags coming home, the Mideast ablaze in rocket attacks, famine in Africa, a man with flaming red hair who opened fire in a crowded theater, and the most indelible of all for me were the images of the double-whammy close to home: Sandy and Sandy Hook. The most haunting, of course, remains the shooting rampage at a quiet little school in a nearby hamlet in CT where my children have friends and where it could have been Any Town USA. Photos of children’s faces frozen in time and Christmas trees adorned with memories will linger. It was a year marked by a country galvanized politically and marked by violence where young soldiers and young children died in vain.
And how did the media handle it? By looping photos and images over and over again. But did they need to? Images never leave us now. They are just a click away.
It’s hard to miss news or the images it provides. If you didn’t see it on TV, there’s a clip in your Facebook newsfeed shared by a friend. There’s an alert in your email about breaking news, or a Google alert on a topic you find interesting.
My colleague, Sean Womack at Touchstorm took stock after the presidential election of how the campaigns used video for better or for worse. He seemed to think they could have used it in a better way to convey the stories they wanted the world to see rather than those they didn’t (like Romney and the 47% debacle). As Sean says, with smartphone cameras, nothing is off the record ever. Here’s Sean’s take: The Camera is Always Rolling
Meanwhile, I look forward to the images of 2013. No presidential politics and, I hope, no pictures of tiny children lost to this world for no reason.