Monday, June 16, 2008

The Meme Chooses You

I'm kind of annoyed that Clay's "cognitive surplus" idea seems to have gotten more traction than some of the other, better developed ideas in his book. "Cognitive surplus" has a lot of truthiness, and I think it is correct in its implication for the present, even if it is dubious historically and is just a bit too easy to loosely glom onto. In particular, I think it is important to position the TV era as very short moment in human history; we need to remember that mass consumption of media is, in its entirety, a recent phenomenon.

My point here, though, is that if you want a good tag for Shirky's recent work, "organizing without organizations" is a much more pithy and fruitful starting point, but this seems to be lost in the shuffle, primarily because there wasn't a new talk on YouTube on the subject, I'd venture.

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