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The Ascent of Media


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About the Author

Roger Parry began his career working for Saatchi & Saatchi, then worked as a journalist for the BBC, LBC and ITV and a consultant with McKinsey and Company. Chairman and CEO of the international division of Clear Channel Communications Inc between 1998 and 2006, he has always sat in the upper echelons of the global media industry. As it stands he is a CEO of, or major investor in, no less than four major media companies, sits on the board of Shakespeare's Globe Theatre.


Roger Parry's scholarly journey through the history of media contains important lessons for today's digital pioneers Roger Parry is a wise, experienced media operator and observer. His range is wide - across books, comics, radio, movies, video games, theatre and more - with eclectic taste and a gift for detail. But one theme, essentially, covers all. He perceives a public hunger for information, entertainment, and shared experience growing invention by invention, device by device: he extrapolates Aristotle's city on a global scale. He stresses ways as well as means. Were Defoe and mates the first bloggers? Were the random collection of contributors who compiled the earliest news sheets really citizen journalists? He binds evolving society and accelerating communication together. He seems to see the whole picture. So we can finally begin to get a handle on a future that, in essence if not in precise physical form, our children's children will recognise 50 years hence. And Parry's textbook? That may be still read for its scholarship and plain old-fashioned common sense by students of life itself. Peter Preston, The Observer ""The Ascent of Media, Roger Parry's new book tracing how we moved from clay tablets to Apple's iPad...anyone trying to forecast the media's future should find [this] sobering...[An] important lesson stems from Mr Parry's central thesis: all media developments are shaped by politics, economics and technology.""-Andy Edge, Financial Times "The Ascent of Media is really about the ascent of man: from a species that started recording his life experience on clay tablets and now records it on computer tablets. In Mr. Parry's view, the future isn't a rejection of the past. It's just a natural evolution. There are two reasons to read any book: To learn or to be entertained. With The Ascent of Media, Roger Parry manages to do both. We can't wait to see the movie." -David Bernstein and Beau Fraser, co-authors of Death to all Sacred Cows "Whatever the technology, mankind has always enjoyed a good story. The Ascent of Media tells a cracking story with a cornucopia of insights. Read Roger Parry and you're equipped to imagine where digital media might take us next." -Peter Bazalgette, TV producer and President, Royal Television Society "Media are going through huge changes. This book provides a thought provoking read and a terrific insight into where we are now and where media might go next." -James Palumbo, founder of Ministry of Sound "The aptly titled Ascent of Media is a must for anyone with even a passing interest in today's vast and exploding world of media. From students of the industry to the leaders of businesses who may struggle to know how to spend their shareholders' advertising money wisely, Roger Parry provides insights into what is really happening in the digital chaos of the twenty-first century..." -Richard Wheatly, Chief Executive of Jazz FM "The Ascent of Media is a wonderful overview of the history of all forms of media and the key people responsible for their development. It leaves the reader in no doubt as to its power to influence our opinions and emotions, leverage commercial and political messages, stimulate the senses and at the same time enhance our productivity." -Neil Blackley, director of Ingenious Media, former Head of UK and European Media Research, Merrill Lynch "Roger's enjoyable and wide-ranging book should definitely be read by young people entering or thinking of entering the media industry, but also by older people like me already passionately immersed in it and wrestling daily with the digital monster." -Richard Hooper, former Deputy Chairman of the Office of Communications (Ofcom) "Roger Parry provides a fascinating narrative of media past, present and future which will inform all practitioners and all who are interested in the development of the zeitgeist and of the great forces in society. The shape of the media is constantly altered by changes in technology, lifestyles and fashion, and the media affect all political, commercial, cultural and scientific developments." -Claire Enders, media analyst "Roger Parry is extra-ordinarily well placed to provide this informed tour d'horizon of media. It is rare to find insight illuminated by both creative and commercial expertise. But no appraisal of the development of modern media would be complete without such an inclusive perspective. Parry is exceptionally well placed to provide it." -Richard Eyre, Chairman of the Internet Advertising Bureau and ex-CEO of ITV and ex-CEO of Capital Radio

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