It was only for this assignment that I visited Frontline web site to watch Digital Nation -- a documentary exploring the impact of Internet and digital media on life in the 21st century. The way that the documentary was produced was unique. They used great video reports, photos and interactive roundtable discussions. Unlike many documentaries, this one actually showed almost everything it reported about. In other words, it didn't rely on statistics or scholar articles, but the reporters did most of the research and shot sources they wanted to use for the documentary.
I think, the program is a wonderful work of broadcast journalism. The reporters are knowledgeable about what they are reporting about. For instance the producer of the documentary, Douglas Rushkoff, has a deep understanding about digital media -- he has even authored a book about this topic a few years ago. Rushkoff covers the story in an amazing way. He raises tons of questions about the digital life, drawing its pros and cons. In general, he did anything that a broadcast journalist was supposed to do.
The documentary does a great job, I believe, in representing the young generation and their usage of digital media. It was interesting to see reports of college students using multiple media, all the same time. This is true about me and many University students. For instance, like my students, as I work on a paper, I found myself being on Facebook, constantly checking three different e-mails, listening to my iPod, texting friends and family members.
Even though there are many experts in the documentary that raised concerns about today's growing digital media among the young generations, I believe the new technology is vital important and that it will do more good than harm. The world is not the same as it was twenty-five years ago. In the documentary, Steven Maher, a history teacher, said "to walk into a classroom that doesn't have any of that media must be like walking into a desert." I agree with Maher. Today's life would not be interesting without digital media.