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BBC Access 2.0: Interview with Charlie Swinbourne

charlieswinbourne.JPGBBC's Access 2.0 blog is carrying an interesting interview with Charlie Swinbourne, who works at See Hear. Its always good to get to know a person behind a name.

Charlie has some interesting comments on the net:

Q: If the web was taken away from me today I would.

Move on with my life! I like to think I can take it or leave it as far as the web goes, although I'd miss email most of all. As good as Facebook and YouTube are, there's nothing as good as living life through face-to-face conversations and actually interacting with people... Although in saying this, I might be in the minority!

A healthy attitude to have, and possibly totally opposite to me. However, I can't help asking the question: how much of this attitude is influenced by the fact he exists within London, much easier to network? Deaf community in the rest of the UK is geographically sparse.

Question for all readers: could you survive without the net these days? I'm old enough to have gone through university pre-internet, and I know research wasn't as easy back then. There were no clicks of a button to gain information nor network.

I would if push came to shove, would such laid back people miss the net? Deaf people especially, how would you carry out research, and would you be content with dusty library shelves, snail mail and minicoms again? Whilst I have some nostalgia for the former, I'm not sure if I'd want to go back to it full time. What do you think?

Charlie touches on UK Deaf people's love affair with social networks, a usage I've intended to blog about for too many years, and I've never got around to it.

Charlie also mentions this blog:

Grumpy Old Deafies is also great, with regular stories and opinion looking at events in the deaf world. Keeps me in the know and always entertains.

Thanks for the plug, but that comment scares me just a bit! Can we live it up? Perhaps we should start off by blogging a bit more. :-D

Comments (8)

Nah mtae, it's all donwlihl form tihs ponit on...why, youv'e gottne yorueslf a lot mroe erorrs in yuor psots lately. Unacectpable!

Perhaps should just quit trying now. :o)

Aye, and retire from Deaf politics. Wait! Didn't we do that already?!

To be honest the thing we have lost since the internet is thoroughness. Where once something akin to a published opinion piece would have been researched, worded, re-worded, edited, submitted, edited again, typeset and distributed (after a time), now everything is done in five minutes and mistakes of all types are accepted as part of the deal (this is not a personal criticism, but a general observation). The problem extends into the world: banks make mistakes with charges, and then correct them as soon as they are informed, whereas pre-internet everything was double-entered and checked by someone else.

I'm sure I could go back to those days....

But the internet isn't only information. What about IM (MSN, Skype, etc), videophone, e mail, etc. All of which could we easily give up in 2007? Yes I get the always on mentality, and sometimes crave space (especially when it comes to e mail, I hate it nowadays).

Re publications, that is not to say that quality can't still exist. If it was not for the net, would you be e.g. exposed to the opinions on here? A blog isn't intended to replace a serious publication, but an attempt to enter into a wider conversation. Can academic publications or quality co-exist alongside content produced by the masses (which collectively may or may not be good)?

However I get your point re quality control, I often get sick of some of the stuff that attempts to pass for intellectualism. That said, I can decide what sites to read, the problem is when you don't know the topic well, thus difficult initially to weed out bad information.

Quality control pre-internet? Two words - The Gruaniad ;-)

When I read Charlie’s comments on the net straight a way I thought a city boy! :-)

“Q: If the web was taken away from me today I would.
Move on with my life! I like to think I can take it or leave it as far as the web goes,”


I get the distinct feeling maybe that’s why the internet section on See Hear was shit! :-(

In the old days, you had to rely on snail mail, telephone, arrange meetings and the logistics surroundings these meetings consumed substantial amount of time, travel and expenses (inc overnight stay). Because of the slow paceness of researching, meeting people and verifying facts and/or of the subjects, it is easier to spot mistakes and allowed contemplative thinking.

Integration and convergance on internet are encouraging quicker turnaround time for publication to get from concept to publication. Mistakes are being made because we are pushing ourselves too fast - in trying to get into on the act. This Web 2.0 phenomeon is astounding and extremely distracting because I am constantly trying to keep up to date and embracing new technologies only for the next new hot thing to land on my lap next week. Once all this have died down, it is my opinion that people/groups will have established what are their fave web apps and concentrate on thoroughness and quality.

If the internet implodes tomorrow, I will find an allotment patch and start growing vegetables, especially leeks and potatoes........

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