News 2006=YouTube … and Condos, condos, condos!
posted by November 27 at 9:27 AMon
Admittedly, Time magazine is completely irrelevant these days. But their Man/Woman/Thing of The Year ritual—they’ve been doing it since 1927 (Charles Lindbergh)—has a relevant life of its own outside the dying magazine. Getting excited about Time’s Person of the Year is like enjoying Super Bowl Sunday even if you don’t watch a single NFL game all year (moi).
2006 has been a Year-Zero, history-altering kind of year: The GOP implosion; the on-line upheaval that’s undoing traditional media; and the tragic War in Iraq. 2006 is on par with previous cultural watersheds like 1966, 1980, and 1994. And so I’m curious to see who or what is crowned Person/Thing of the Year to define these shape-shifting times.
I nominate Google/YouTube as 2006’s standard-bearer. I think October’s $1.65 billion deal perfectly sums up the new media insurgency that’s exploding the status quo right now.
Runner-up for Time’s annual honor: Maybe “Purple America?” After years of pushing its radical, divisive agenda, the GOP finally alienated the majority of the country. Voila: 2006 starred the emergence of the Democrats and the new center.
I think the Blogoshpere—based on its role in upending the traditional media (and its role in the Democratic landslide)— should also be a candidate for the 2006 title.
Something about the war also seems like it should be under consideration, but I don’t know what best sums it up. Time chickened out of giving the title to Osama bin Laden in 2001 (the obvious choice), so I certainly don’t see them giving it to the Iraqi insurgents this year. Rumsfeld, maybe? (Remember, the Person of the Year doesn’t have to be a success story…just the person or thing that had the biggest impact on events.)
And 2006 locally? I’d nominate Condos as Seattle’s thing of the year.
As for those other shape-shifting years I mentioned: In 1966, the honor went to the Young Generation. In 1980 it went to Ronald Reagan. And 1994 was reflected back belatedly: Newt Gingrich got Time’s Man of the Year in 1995. (1994 itself went to Pope John Paul II ?)
Shape-Shifting Years Past:
And Hitler got in 1938.