Simply put, new media and social media are not the same thing, though they are closely related. Although the definition is subjective new media encompasses all forms of content delivery on the Web. Social media is a subset of new media that allows for interaction between the publisher and the audience.
What is New Media?
It’s a broad term, but the best explanation for new media as compared to traditional media comes from Wikipedia:
“What distinguishes new media from traditional media is the digitizing of content into bits.”
“…is a term meant to encompass the emergence of digital, computerized, or networked information and communication technologies in the later part of the 20th century.”
“…a term in Media Studies that emerged in the later part of the 20th century to encompass the amalgamation of traditional media such as film, images, music, spoken and written word, with the interactive power of computer and communications technology, computer-enabled consumer devices and most importantly the Internet. There are many promises related to the term. For example, new media holds out a possibility of on-demand access to content any time, anywhere, on any digital device, as well as interactive user feedback, creative participation and community formation around the media content. Another important promise of New Media is the “democratization” of the creation, publishing, distribution and consumption of media content. What distinguishes new media from traditional media is the digitizing of content into bits. There is also a dynamic aspect of content production which can be done in real time.”
So new media is digital media, such as the Internet, websites, computer multimedia, computer games, CD-ROMS, and DVD, as opposed to traditional media such as print and television.
The media has been reporting on the transition from old media to new for over 30 years. Check out this news report about people being able to read the newspaper on their computers from 1981.
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