Apr 09

Zizek Essay: Corporate Rule of the Internet

Popular stand-up philosopher, Slavoj Žižek has an interesting little essay on Corporate Rule of Cyberspace. My favourite part:

There are two tell-tale words here: abstraction and control. In order to manage a cloud, there needs to be a monitoring system which controls its functioning, a system which is by definition hidden from the end-user. The paradox is thus that, as the new gadget (smartphone or tiny portable) I hold in my hand becomes increasingly personalized, easy to use, “transparent” in its functioning, the more the entire set-up has to rely on the work being done elsewhere, on the vast circuit of machines which coordinate the user’s experience. In other words, for the user experience to become more personalized or non-alienated, it has to be regulated and controlled by an alienated network.

With the sale of Instagram to Facebook for a cool billion dollars, this seems like a good time to pay some attention to who owns the Internet.

There’s little reason to think that these entities will act any better with a monopoly than any past entity ever has. Other than the fact they wear dungarees to work and don’t have cubicles.

If they even still do that. Who knows?

via Bruce Sterling

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