ERIC Number: ED240622
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-May
Reference Count: 0
The Information Society: Fact or Charming Mythology?
Ledingham, John A.
Today the majority of the United States work force is employed in the production, processing, and dissemination of information. However, the situation with regard to videotex, the medium that served as the basis for predicting an information society, is far from settled. The statistics concerning videotex are impressive, the technology fascinating, and the promise tantalizing. However, there is good reason to doubt that the medium is on the verge of universal availability, much less adoption, and certainly much less dominance. At this time, after all the marketing hyperbole is stripped away, the facts remain that most videotex systems are in the testing stage, are not two-way, and have not yet proven their attractiveness. Many of these alternative ways of gathering information or of conducting transactions are not perceived overwhelmingly by consumers as having advantages over tried and proven methods. While an impressive percentage of potential consumers seem predisposed to adopt videotex, some 40 years of mass media research has shown the difficulty in linking experimental predispositions or attitudes to ultimate behavior in field studies. Despite the failure to link attitudes and behavior, predictions are still being made of a "wired nation," but the information available indicates that this is more charming mythology than fact. (Summaries of videotex usage in Europe, Canada, and the United States are appended). (HOD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Media Role
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (33rd, Dallas, TX, May 26-30, 1983).