There are many examples of words that are ruined long before they actually become useful to describe something.

Today, let’s talk about “Multimedia”!!!!! πŸ“½οΈβœοΈπŸŽ™οΈπŸŒˆ….. πŸ‘‡

The word “multimedia” calls to mind a CD-ROM, the kind that you had to mount inside of a little beige plastic caddy before inserting it into your Macintosh Quadra.


At that time multimedia generally meant “words AAAAAND pictures and maybe SOUUUUUNDS all on ONE THING.”

Later on “multimedia” became a catch-all word for anything that someone might make (like the awful word “content” is used today).

Some tools (and words are just tools) need to sit around in a drawer for a few decades before we find a good use for them…

As the world becomes more conscious of accessibility and the fact that different people learn in different ways at different times, the word “multimedia” finally has a good use: Much of what we make is published across multiple media. Prose/Film/Radio is the most common combo.

A note on multimedia work: Translation between media shouldn’t be automatic. Some thought should go into how something is best presented in each medium, even if sometimes it’s as simple as a text-to-voice, voice-to-text, or just saving out an audio version of a video.

Many works are single-media-only and they must be. There’s no clear film version of most radio stories just as there’s no prose version of a great film.

This is multimedia.

But there can always be a radio version of prose or poetry. 98% of YouTube videos could just be audio.

But because the word is ruined, we’ll need to use a word like multiformat, which I don’t hate, butβ€”

It shoulda been you, multimedia… It shoulda been you.

My next experiment on my little blog is to begin making these posts multiformat.