Wednesday, June 15, 2005

a useful inquiry

On Jon Husband's Wirearchy:
... an interesting and matter-of-fact article titled The Power Of Us in Business Week, stating in no uncertain terms that the use of interpersonal communications on the Web, in interlinked interconnected environments, is having significant impact on business logic, organizational structures and the power relationships between established and more traditional organizations and their constituents.
Just as some individual bloggers have become mini self-promotional industries, so too the blogosphere as a whole seems to do nothing better than come up with ever new and astounding ways to take credit for the most amazing transformational developments.

But here's something -- a task, if you will -- for some sociopolitical mythologist to study: What evidence is there that the use of interpersonal communications on the Web, in interlinked interconnected environments is having any effect on the glurgian mystifications of nationhood*?

That is, is it possible to study the blogosphere and say with any degree of certainty that (a) the mythos of nationhood is undergoing serious critique leading to a new sense of human order and systems, (b) the activity of global interconnected environments is exaggerating and deepening traditional notions of national identity, or (c) the group intelligence of the blogosphere is having no impact on the matter whatsoever?

One might argue that group intelligence cannot exist without some reduction in the aura of nationality. After all, one definition of intelligence has to do with reducing the number of unexamined lies in which the mind is suspended. Given the exemplary intelligence cited by Business Week, however, it might be hard to say:
The Internet's supreme group-forming capability suggests the rise of an almost spooky group intelligence. Within minutes of Pope John Paul II's death, hundreds of eBay sellers had posted related products for sale.

*E.g.: "Lo stato, cosi come il fascismo lo concepisce e l'attua, e un fatto spirituale e morale, poiche concreta l'organizzazione politica, giuridica, economica della nazione; e tale organizzazione e, nel suo sorgere e nel suo sviluppo, una manifestazione dello spirito." Mussolini, March 10, 1929, speaking at the Teatro reale dell'opera in Rome.

[trans. As Fascism conceives and realizes it, the State is a spiritual and moral fact, because it concretizes the political, judicial and economic order of the nation; and such organization, in its rise and in its development, is a manifestation of the spirit.]


Blogger Juke said...

This guy I know builds micro-hydroelectric power systems. You make a little dam and run a pipe down from it to a turbine that spins a coil and makes electricity. You could carry the whole thing on your back, easily. They're in demand, he ships them all over the world.
One time he was talking about how they'd look in aggregate. As one big dam, how big it would be.
The ecological footprint isn't as dramatic locally, and probably not even in mass, but it's a responsible thing to contemplate.
We're atomizing. Not just here. The whole thing's bleeding its identity back into its components.
What that means in good/bad schema is beyond me. Obviously an atomized species is less powerful than a hived up buzzing swarm. But just as obviously it's more agile through adversity.

6/16/2005 3:58 AM  
Blogger Tom Matrullo said...

I'm all for something other than hives, buzzes, swarms. The whole western shabang of networked kerfluffle keeps not thinking the fact that the net lends itself to modes of contemplation and shared contemplation that dropped from our media-leeched retinas back in the day. The day we no longer remember.

6/16/2005 9:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although I've never heard the buzz
I've heard some sounds I've mulled "what was...?":
I heard a mewing from a bush
Passed by in my daily rush:
A fierce or free or pleading tone
Came from a swarm or one alone.
I passed, and wondered what I'd heard:
A feral cat - or fair catbird.


6/18/2005 7:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Juke - think of that movie Tucker where Tucker, undaunted by the organized destruction of his automotive industrial ambitions, jabbers on excitedly about building mini-refrigerators for impoverished Africans so they can have chilled milk and not get rickets.

When I was ten or twelve or so I built an electric generator in my garage - Bell wire wrapped around a magnet hooked up to some flywheel contraption suspended by two-by-fours and plywood. I covinced a friend that we could damn a local stream and generate enough electricity to make it worthwhile. So we grabbed a shovel and pickaxe and hauled everything a mile or so past the local gravel pit to the stream I had in mind. When we got there the stream was shallow and swampy, the ground was full of rocks and roots, and we gave up after about fifteen minutes of futilely attempting to build a damn.

What's new here? Everybody's building their own homeblog generators thinking there's a stream just over there where it'll all work out and change everything. 15 minutes. 15 megabytes of fame. But your friend's retro-mechanical invention - he much did he have to remember or have to forget to come up with that?


6/18/2005 10:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Communicative capitalism and the democratic deficit

What she said.


6/18/2005 11:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

6/19/2005 12:36 AM  
Blogger Julian Silvain said...

I skim a lot of blogs, and so far yours is in the Top 3 of my list of favorites. I'm going to dive in and try my hand at it, so wish me luck.

It'll be in a totally different area than yours (mine is about mens male enhancement reviews) I know, it sounds strange, but it's like anything, once you learn more about it, it's pretty cool. It's mostly about mens male enhancement reviews related articles and subjects.

10/01/2005 10:37 PM  

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