It’s all about the telegraph

If somebody talks to you about the telegraph, maybe you think about prehistory. But the telegraph has been the origin of many improvements (both ideological and material) of today’s society, although many of us did not know about that.

Thus, as James Carey has analised in his studies, the telegraph can be considered the origin of globalisation, of modern journalism and of global time. With the creation of the telegraph, traders could know the prices of primary sources and choose the best place to buy. Does not this remind you of something? Exactly! A such-a-modern-concept called globalisation.

With regard to modern journalism, thanks to the invention of the telegraph, journalists were able to cover information in a faster way. That was, to be able to explain what happened and send the information without depending on material means of communications such as letters.

Then, the way to explain things changed radically. In order to save money (to send a telegraph was not precisely cheap), journalists were used to tell first important things. However, they were forced to write the basic data first not only because of economic reasons but also because of technological problems, which created a fear  on professionals to lose the connection. This is how teleprinters were born, those pieces of paper which contained aseptic language and which could be published by any newspaper.

Besides, since journalists could send their information via telegrams, they started to write in an objective way so that their pieces of writing could be sent to many countries. And this is how partisan journalism started to decline, giving birth to objective and modern journalism, based on analysing reality without taking into account your ideology.

Still, we can compare the creation of the telegraph with the birth of the Internet, which also helped to liberalize information, globalize society anb break the barriers of space and time.  As many people say, past times come back. And this is what is happenning: the telegraph changed society in the same way that the Internet is changing it, although in a wider scale.

Àngels Mulet

Trainee student at Signe Words