Archive for the ‘digital culture’ Category
Apparently, DRM is not enough for MS. Ars reports that Microsoft has filed for a patent (patent application 2008/125,102) on technology it feels could address such situations via the use of what the company refers to as a “digital manners policy,” or DMP for short.
Sounds nice, no? Having a chip that temporarily bricks cell-phones in the quiet carriage. But of course, digital manners is the same kind of newspeak as DRM. Just like drm doesn’t protect your rights (it limits them), digital manners defies the whole concept of manners.
Not shooting at your neighbour is a matter of law. Not shouting at him is a matter of manners. The distinction is there for a purpose: some aspects of life are left to your own discretion and good judgement. They are enforced by social convention and peer pressure. Regulating such issues means proclaiming that you are not fit to make those judgements. It is acceptable in a nursery or a psychiatric ward, not on the street.
Digital manner is not about manners at all, its about a company thinking it has the right to dictate how you should behave. I wish I could wave it off as bad manners, but its much worse. It takes digital feudalism to new heights.
Clay Shirky makes an interesting analogy between Gin and Television, and their relationship to social and cognitive surplus. Couldn’t help thinking about Hogarth.
|Beer Street and Gin Lane are two prints issued in 1751 by English artist William Hogarth in support of what would become the Gin Act. Designed to be viewed alongside each other, they depict the evils of the consumption of gin as a contrast to the merits of drinking beer.
… On the simplest level, Hogarth portrays the inhabitants of Beer Street as happy and healthy, nourished by the native English ale, and those who live in Gin Lane as destroyed by their addiction to the foreign spirit of gin;
…Gin Lane shows shocking scenes of infanticide, starvation, madness, decay and suicide, while Beer Street depicts industry, health, bonhomie and thriving commerce, but there are contrasts and subtle details that allude to the prosperity of Beer Street as the cause of the misery found in Gin Lane.
Nowadays you can get any form of trash on the TV, yet governments from US to China are trying to control the ‘net. Looks like the man has sided with the Gin makers this time.
Kinda gives a new dimension to “free as in beer”..
Here’s another great story from Ethan Zukerman on how political activists are using technology to balance the advantage of the organized state. I think that’s what Clay Shirky means by here comes everybody.
… All this is useful context in considering the project that activist organization Sokwanele announced today: a Googlemaps mashup of election-rigging incidents. Each icon on the map corresponds to a media report of an incident that controvenes SADC standards for a free and fair election. Clicking on an icon will take you to the issue of Sokwanele’
Right, that’s it. enough. I’m gone.
To be honest, I wasn’t feeling very comfortable there for some time now. The idea that these guys are making a commodity out of our identity was gradually seeping in, and I – call me old fashioned – it just didn’t feel right.
|But now this. Derek Blackadder. Derek is a Canadian trade unionist who was trying to use FaceBook to do what trade unionists do: organise workers and promote their causes. This guy must have read the about page -
And instead of thinking ‘oh, cool! I can throw a virtual wet fish at my homeboy’s virtual dog’ he thought ‘hey, social utility, connects – that could be useful for empowering workers, mobilizing campaigns, fighting corporations.
Ah, did you say fighting corporations? EEEEEEE wrong answer, dude. You’re out.
you can read the full story here, here, and all over the place. There’s a campaign to reinstate him, and knowing how these people are scared of bad publicity – they probably will (or already have), and say it was all a misunderstanding. But I say: why bother? You know this Internet? the great thing about it: you have the choice. At the end of the day, FB is just another social networking site. And not such a great find (unless you’re really, really into wet fish in the face). Just move on. It was getting too crowded anyway. See you guys at UnLtdWorld, Pulse, LinkedIn, or where ever the winds of web may take you.
(p.s. and leave a msg if you need an UnLtdWorld invite. They are seriously nice.)