Despite the hammerings of educationalists, the so-called three R's are far from sacrosanct: reading, writing and arithmetic. I’m talking specifically about the first two of these.

(OK, I’m not talking about them, I am actually writing and that irony isn’t lost on me. But then I am future gazing, and I could after all have podcast this post.)

Reading and writing have been bedrocks of civilisation, some would say the foundation, and it is only relatively recently that they have had competition as a media for non-synchronous communication. The 20th Century triumphs of broadcast radio, broadcast TV and semiotics compensated slightly for an individual’s illiteracy, but they were far from a perfect substitute and entirely useless when that individual wished to communicate back.

The 21st Century hasn’t taken long however to present a cornucopia of communication possibilities. Whilst applications of the Internet were dominated just a few years ago by text, and lots and lots of it, new applications pivot massively around the audio-visual. "Radio" and "TV" over IP / Narrowcasting / Podcasting / Moblogging / Vlogging / On Demand / Voice over IP / Video conferencing...

The future has arrived, and it’s audio visual

Everyone now carries an audio visual device they can wield quickly and easily to interact synchronously or non-synchronously, with audio or with audio and video, at any time, in any place, what they want and with whom they want. Marketing communicators must adapt to a world in which reading and writing takes a back row seat.

Whichever way you look at it, the three R’s are dead. Long live the three M’s:

Mobility – fluency in using mobile Internet devices pervasively

Mashing – searching, filtering, collating, combining and interpreting information, to inform yourself and your reaction to and interaction with the world

Mathematics – simply universal, everlasting and sacred :-)