In South Pacific, Nellie says to Emile of World War II, “I don’t think it’s the end of the world. Do you?” He replies, “The end of some worlds, perhaps.”
Technology always ends some worlds for some people. One of my brothers-in-law is a farrier — a specialist in the care and shoeing of horses’ hooves. Such people were once ubiquitous. In the early 21st century, he’s the closest thing to an anachronism I personally know. The automobile nearly did away with his profession years before he was born.
Garrison Keillor laments the dismissing of the guard in the world of publishing. The technology that lets me post my haiku and fiction here and that lets me run my own little publishing company is slowly gaining ground over the model of publishing that was the norm during the 19th and 20th centuries.
His points about authors not making a living from writing anymore and how difficult it may become to find the best writing without its having been anointed by a gatekeeper are well taken.
But I like the democracy inherent in our digital publishing forums. The times, they are a-changing, and with all due respect and then some to Mr. Keillor, I can’t get nostalgic about carbon copies and the whims of dyspeptic editors (having been one myself over the years). The more people we have practicing literacy, the better.