After the United States Postal Service misattributed a quote to Maya Angelou on a commemorative stamp, many suggested that the Postal Service “had simply believed too readily what they read on the Internet.” Now, for the New Yorker, Ian Crouch argues that although the Postal Service received approval from the Angelou family to publish the quote, the stamp points to the influence of the Internet on misattribution, as the Internet causes “minor falsehoods [to] metastasize at an alarming speed.”...more
Posts Tagged: Internet
On February 26, 1995, just about twenty years ago, Newsweek published an article by Clifford Stoll called “Why the Internet Won’t Be Nirvana.” In it, Stoll provides a litany of faults to be found in the nascent web. Although there’s a decidedly un-zen tone to the article, Stoll makes some surprisingly accurate predictions—right alongside some laughable ones....more
Don’t discount the power of memes to control minds. The National Post reports:
Feminist Ryan Gosling is an “image macro,” a photo superimposed with text to humourous effect — and frequently employed for political ends. The ultimate takeaway from the University of Saskatchewan study, say the researchers, is the somewhat surprising revelation that these memes could actually be affecting people’s belief systems.
Michael J. Gaynor visits Green Bank, the West Virginian town without wi-fi:
In Green Bank, you can’t make a call on your cell phone, and you can’t text on it, either. Wireless internet is outlawed, as is Bluetooth. It’s a premodern place by design, devoid of the gadgets and technologies that define life today.
Save this as a bookmark. You writer nerds are going to need it.
Assange on Orwell and, of course, the Internet.
Why the Internet is a portal to our own darkness.
Working for academia v....more
The world is moving faster than ever. Digital technologies have allowed, encouraged, and even required quicker processing of information. The net effect isn’t necessarily a good thing—all that speed has left people struggling to consume information in fragments, and is ultimately eroding art....more
That is not to say that normal books will decline. Of course they won’t. There will always be a place for big, satisfying stories to burrow through. But it seems that the rise of short stories are partly caused by our falling attention spans.
Are we right to be nostalgic for a time before the internet when we could just read? Katy Waldman, writing for Slate, wonders if we might be misremembering things.
I also realize, typing this confession of pathological distractibility, that I may be pining for an Eden of immersive focus that never existed.
Dan Piepenbring has had a bee in his bonnet about the spam comments they get over at the Paris Review Daily—”they’re by turns,” he says, “ludic, cryptic, disquieting, emotional, and inadvertently profound”—so fascinating, in fact, that he has kept a working list of his favorite ones....more