The screen syndrome

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FG has just returned from a business trip to Germany. I know, it sounds very glamorous but on arrival in a small village in the Black Forest (about an hour out from Stuttgart where the meetings were to take place), it turned out no one had booked us rooms at the hotel. Fortunately the hotel owner had two spare rooms in another place up the road. There were three of us. So I spent the night on the floor while one colleague slept in the bed and the other got the spare room. Not the best preparation for a full day ahead.

My main reason for attending was to tell people about blogs and readers. The reaction was very positive but I still find it amazing that people need telling about this stuff. I got into it by putting it on my ‘To Do’ list in the new year, and within an hour I was up to speed. An hour later, I had this blog set up. 

I’m really not especially technical although people seem to think I am. I’ve noticed this attitude before: people get all medieval on me, oohing and aahing and expecting me to start flying because I’m able to put things on a computer screen. It’s almost the way people behave when they see themselves on videos or photographs. There’s a lot of jumping about and excitement. It’s the ‘screen syndrome’. Show  that you have command over ‘the screen’ and you’re somehow powerful.

I’m a computer musician, but only because computers are very good for this and cheap enough now to make a home studio feasible. If I were a photographer I’d probably have a computer for storing, manipulating and sharing photographs, but I would still be a photographer, not a technician. So I like to blog, and I like using Google Reader, but only because I find blogging a good way to learn more about what I do for a living and because Google Reader actually helps me do it better. I’m a PR copywriter. I’m not a technician.

People often have difficulty seeing outside of what they do. I think this is particularly true of ‘the screen syndrome’. If something’s on a screen there must be some ‘magical’ process that is far too technical or difficult to understand that has put it there. It’s just not so.

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One thought on “The screen syndrome

  1. Sorry to hear about the pants trip. FG And yes, it amazes me too that people in our profession are not aware of the most simple tools. I put it down to not reading enough.

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