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Re: <nettime> Has Facebook superseded Nettime?
Morlock Elloi on Fri, 2 Oct 2009 11:43:06 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> Has Facebook superseded Nettime?

This is the core issue - motivation.

Is there a motivation besides being the alternative-big-thing? All
proposals I've seen so far do center around the same paradigm already
deployed ad nauseam by Friendster, MySpace, Facebook ... they just
want to be "non-corporate", "free", "flossy" and "open" and somehow
less evil. This is like proposing open-source jail where all jailers
and guards will be certified as FSF, EFF and FFF-compliant, and
everyone can make their own jail for free. *uck that.

There is no motivation because the subject does not attract highly
talented developers, it attracts underemployed or tax-funded
wannabees. Social networking is essentially a non-interesting hype,
good for the sheeple and social sciences graduates.

Let me give you an example: during 90s there was a strong motivation
to develop good encryption tools and propagate them. This motivation
did attract very talented people, and they created things which were
not look-alikes of corporate counterparts. There were no lookalikes.
SSL. PGP. DH. Very few really knew what these things were. The authors
were not motivated by the me-too-facebook drive that will provide
recognition by the masses. There was ideology behind it, and it was
not slashdot fame or VC money. They didn't expect masses to understand
anything. Yet their stuff had profound influence on the wire as we
know it. They let the ghost out of the bottle.

The social networking development today attracts third-rate
technologists, testosterone-laden entrepreneurs and a lot of idle
unemployed. This is why it's all more of the same.

You will know that you are on the right track in social networking
development if (a) it's declared illegal, (b) you are scorned by the
social networking luminaries and (c) there is no way to make money out
of it, yet it's sustainable.

> You cannot politically defy the institutions when all you really
> wanted was to be clasped to their bosoms and hope in time to be
> cherished under the very framework of oppressive values you are
> thinking of overcoming. That would be co-optation, revolution only
> in the sense of a circulation of elites rather than the extirpation
> of the very impulses of elitism.


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