Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Monday, June 11, 2012

Blogging Twitter of The Future!

I haven't made any secret of my strong dislike of twitter, which seems to me for the most part to evacuate human communication of any substance not already available to my cat: "hey, you, hungry!" "so warm!" "annoyed now!" "purrrrrrrr!" But, you know, not nearly as soft or as cute or as delightfully absurd.

I'll grant twitter is a pretty entertaining way for stand-up comedians to maintain attention on themselves with one-liners between gigs, which seems to matter to them enormously, and it can become a powerful form of multi-perspective reportage from moment-to-moment of those very occasional public events that deserve such treatment, mass demonstrations, fraught legislative floor-votes, and such. I guess it also provides a more real time and more geographically dispersed variation on the water-cooler commentary provoked by popular tee vee shows.

Otherwise, I think twitter is just one more disastrously disabling distraction diminishing our capacity to deliberate about serious questions in the critical or argumentative way indispensable to any real purchase on or judgment of events, provoking us instead to bounce fleeting intuitions off of one another, re-tweeting them ever on and on without comment, hollowed-out tidal forces of uncritical pre-judgments sloshing about without understanding or much chance of understanding emerging from them, with word-counts and tag-clouds and buzz-documentarians pretending that what they are doing is analysis rather than just surfing a bland wave of oblivion toward oblivion.

Anyway, I rather like the idea of tearing tweets from the endless idiot pee-stream and punitively prodding and pressuring them in the far more capacious and critical practice of my own preferred medium of blogging. I notice that "futurology" "transhumanism" "singularity" provide especially rich flit-fodder for an anti-futurological blog-critic. Yes, there will be more of that, I think.


Chad Lott said...

If you haven't, I'd suggest checking out "stand-up philosopher" Jason Silva's videos (useful for the aspiring bulimic):

He's figured out that combining MTV video production with Kurzweil nut-hugging equals legions of rabid fans.

I seriously thought you were tilting at windmills with all this nonsense a couple of years ago, but it has invaded my favorite forums as of late.

LIttle pockets of the internet that would in previous years have been dedicated to Discordianism, The Church of the Subgenius or some other self aware silliness are over run with these transhumanist dorks.

All you have to do is say something like "you know you'll never be uploaded into a computer, right?" and the ad hominem attacks flair right up.

jimf said...

> [T]witter. . . evacuate[s] human communication of any substance
> not already available to my cat: "hey, you, hungry!" "so warm!"
> "annoyed now!" "purrrrrrrr!"

Maybe that's going to be the new standard for "effective" communication.

No doubt you've heard of this one:
"Many government agencies require documents or forms to meet specific
readability levels." (Not that it helps. ;-> )

But maybe the cat test is the new threshold for TL;DR.

jollyspaniard said...

Twitter is useful if you want to search something that is happening now. I haven't been able to get into it. I've never been interested in blogs that consist of nothing but links and when I sign into twitter I have to spend a lot of time scrolling through fluffy tweets and link spam.