Monday, December 14, 2009

What was private has become public, & vice versa

What ever happened to the good old days, when you could make a reasonably-confidential telephone call in a public place simply by stepping into a phone booth and closing the door? Almost all of those old-fashioned phone booths have disappeared (due to crime, my husband thinks), replaced by pay phones that offer neither privacy nor, if outdoors, protection from the weather. Now, if you want to make a confidential phone call, you have to call from home on a landline phone (the old-fashioned kind of phone that's actually plugged into a wall jack). I've heard that cell phones are, according to law, a form of radio, and that nothing you say on a cell phone is considered confidential.

And there, of course, there's one's so-called private life. Now, it's far too often splashed all over the front page of a newspaper or magazine, or displayed and/or discussed on a news telecast or homepage, with no concern for any person or persons--adult or child--affected.

But the opposite is also true. An old friend of ours who's a former actor complained years ago that movies killed the acting business. Once upon a time, practically every town worth its salt had its own theater. Then along came the movies, in which one actor could be seen by millions, and millions of small-town actors were suddenly unemployed. Then along came videos and downloads, and now, even the movie theaters are deserted, as audiences of hundreds have been reduced to individuals in front of their home or portable screens. The same thing happened to music. Once upon a time, if you wanted to hear music, you played it yourself, and everyone within earshot could hear you. Or you hired musicians to perform at a simchah/happy occasion, or attended a performance. Now, everyone's got his/her own iPod. Public entertainment has now gone private.

What a topsy-turvy world.

Related posts of mine:


Post a Comment

<< Home

<< List
Jewish Bloggers
Join >>