While watching Chris Anderson's TED talk today, and how he's observing how people - young people especially - are using the web to synthesize everything related to pop-culture, i.e. dance, music, graphics (memes) and the like, my thoughts turn to being amazed at the creative directions people take themselves.

It's like an unsupervised playground out there. And like an unsupervised playground, we have inklings of where it goes. (Wm. Golding anyone?)

Anyone besides me see a need for a referee, an editor so that we don't all drown in a sea of (unrecognized) fake news? So we can prioritize information such that we keep our Imagined Communities (and all they provide) going?

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...or *do we* keep our Imagined Communities going in the traditional sense. Just as Benedict Anderson's common vernacular thesis gave rise to nations and nationalism, the trans-effects of a global information network suggests a new non-linguistic identity is forming based on idea exchange. As exciting as that is, it if frought with pitfalls once we realize that the race and competition for resources, (including labor!) will test any common self-conceptions that may grow from our new globally shared awareness of the other. 

So many ball in the air at once. It's getting hard to keep this all straight.

I like your comparison to an unsupervised playground. I guess the editor is the teacher, the parent, your conscience? when it comes to analyzing the veracity of and importance of what you're looking at. Unfortunately, many young people lack that ability to analyze. 

Sorting through massive amounts of information is not something I like to do when I'm attempting a search: I get "lost" and waste an enormous amount of time. As this evolves, I imagine the filter will be controlled by someone or some ones.


It cannot be the consumer to be the editor. At least with a traditional newspaper model, because space was finite, only certain things could be included on the page. That forced editors to make value judgements and professional journalism - often GOOD journalism- was born. Same with finite number of broadcast channels. Because it's finite, an editor has to decide how to put that time or space to use. In the internet age, there is neithe and we've lost our discipline - anyone can put anything on the net and the readership isn't a discerning audience. My point is that when everyone is screaming no one is listening. And in the internet age, all the incentives are in place for abusing the medium. ...and we STILL need editors to sift through the noise to find the things we really need to know. 

We are poorer for it.


Pat Olsen said:

I like your comparison to an unsupervised playground. I guess the editor is the teacher, the parent, your conscience? when it comes to analyzing the veracity of and importance of what you're looking at. Unfortunately, many young people lack that ability to analyze. 

Sorting through massive amounts of information is not something I like to do when I'm attempting a search: I get "lost" and waste an enormous amount of time. As this evolves, I imagine the filter will be controlled by someone or some ones.

Interesting!

That could be a full-time job. Filtering information and selling it. Like Costco does with products, in a sense. I almost always trust that what costco sells will be good quality and a good price for that quality. Costco has taken all the options for something, like say a blender, and narrowed the choices to 1 or 2 based on what they think their customers would want. I happen to like the choices costco has and get many things there. 

Maybe that's the next step, people providing a filtering service. Customers would pay a small fee to have access to that person or companies filtering service, where websites have already been analyzed and thrown out or kept, narrowing down the choices. There will be many filtering services out there, a person just needs to pick the one with the flavor they agree with and go with that one. 

However, I believe google and MSN and Yahoo etc. already filter in a sense. 

Inundated.  That's the word that comes to my mind.  The Internet seems like a giant sea of brightly colored fish all trying to garner attention.  From some of the articles and TED talks, we've seen how individuals with resources and vision have been able to culminate disparate talent into amazing works of art or service projects, but without those key leaders, the robust talent is just sitting out there in giant pools of brightly colored fish swimming just under the surface of recognition.

I think a case could be made for referees or editors or online content, but I think there is also a need to find, train and support leaders--with vision--who can utilize the vasts talents growing up on the Internet.  It almost seems like there needs to be a college degree offered in "Internet Talent Utilization"!

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