I guess today we are seeing things change as well. The way news is given and spread has changed from just being what we read in the paper or hear on the news. The people who not very long ago controlled what news we heard, how we heard it, and when we heard it are now struggling to keep up with the exchange of information on Twitter and Facebook. I watch the news and hear reports on various people of interest's Facebook statuses, or recent Tweets. Really do I need the news at all? Couldn't I follow these people on Twitter or Facebook myself? Isn't the time I spend listening to people, on major network news, sit in pride as they "report" on statuses just wasted time? Still, even as I say that, I feel that there are certain reputable news agencies that actually give us really important information. Yet, again even as I say that, I know that my Dad just returned from Nepal. The first day he was there a church was bombed by Hindus. I am not really sure if anyone reported this information in the United States. I do know that I didn't hear about it, until he came home and told me, and he only knew because he was there! Shouldn't we as citizen's of the United States of America care about people who are being attacked for being Christians, no matter where they live in the world, Especially since we live in the country where freedom of religion was pioneered?
Anyway what would Mark Twain think about the exchange of news and information, which is nearly instantaneous on the internet? Especially considering that he worked for hours and hours, as a printer for a small town newspaper just to get each page slowly, and laboriously ready for the sharing of news. I think he would have appreciated that information was readily available, but it's just a guess.
I wonder what Mark Twain would have thought of Texting. I know that he absolutely HATED grammatical errors. He had a great love of languages. He liked to learn about their make-up, and grammatical rules. (I really find him interesting and love many things about his writing, but I don't really get this interest! I hate grammar....Ugh how boring! I would much rather read about Huck floating down the Mississippi, Tom attending his own funeral, or a Connecticut Yankee in King Author's Court than study present participles, correct ending marks for sentences, and when to capitalize.) Personally, I feel like his love for grammar had a lot to do with his desire to feel like he was good enough, smart enough, and the fact that he fought with a fear of failure all his life. Unfortunately for me, I have never personally met Mark Twain (although, when I visited Hannibal I did meet a dude dressed up like him) anyway, I not really and truly friends with him, so that's just guess. I wonder if Twain, with his love for grammar would have hated the abbreviations used in texting? Would he have studied the grammatical "rules" of texting? Would he have bought a textionary? Would he have written a book in texting dialogue? I think so, I don't think he could have resisted satirizing texting! Maybe he would have done something like my mother-in-law. Once I was iming her and said, "ttyl" and "lol". So she wrote, "hoamihtgttbr". I was like "WHAT?!" And she said, "Hang On A Minute I Have To Go To The BathRoom."
I know that Mark Twain kept many notebooks throughout his life. Today we blog. I know that he was a great man of letters. Throughout his life he corresponded with many people, friends, family members, women that he loved, and even with enemies and rivals. Many times the letters exchanged with enemies and rivals were shared via letters posted in newspapers for all to read! Today we write on each other walls, comment on notes, im, and complain about each other on our status.
I do know that Twitter has nothing on Mark Twain! He was "tweeting" with literary greats long before computers or cell phones even existed. Many of the letters he wrote talked about people he had been "twittering" with. Back then it just meant they were discussing, chatting, and passing time. Guess that's what it means today, and it's not really all that much different from what they were doing back then! They just had to work harder to do it.