I've Seen the Worst Memes of My Generation Destroyed by Madness

Cultural critic Evgeny Morozov has just written the essay equivalent of The Social Network. "The Meme Hustlers," published yesterday in The Baffler, is a fictional-but-true account of a well-known Silicon Valley figure, O'Reilly Books publisher Tim O'Reilly. It's also a story about the future that Silicon Valley… » 4/02/13 12:16pm 4/02/13 12:16pm

We will not change the world with memes alone

Internet political scientist Evgeny Morozov has written a powerful essay in the New Republic about problems with the popular idea that the internet is an inherently democratizing force. The occasion for his ire is Steven Johnson's new book, Future Perfect: The Case for Progress in a Networked Age. Morozov upbraids… » 2/05/13 10:20am 2/05/13 10:20am

Stop pretending that social media will democratize the world

Are you sick of hearing tech pundits trumpeting that the democratic successes of Arab Spring can be attributed in large part to Twitter, Facebook, and other social media? Maybe you're a little suspicious of the idea that social media is freedom's greatest ally, especially given that Facebook is being used… » 3/22/12 4:49pm 3/22/12 4:49pm

Should we have "reputation insurance" so we get payouts when Facebook screws us?

An ancient video of you just popped up on Facebook — one you thought you'd deleted years ago. You're smearing your face with chocolate pudding, drinking shots, and yelling "Santorum!" Now you want a job as a White House aide. What can you do? Wealthy people pay SEO companies to fix their online reputations. But what… » 2/21/12 4:39pm 2/21/12 4:39pm