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Re: <nettime> Will your insurance company subsidize your quantified self
Flick Harrison on Thu, 17 Apr 2014 10:55:42 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> Will your insurance company subsidize your quantified self?

> (who is top if you google "search engine" if not Google themselves?)

You'd be surprised. Google not even on the first page... except the
last hit is an ad for "google search appliance."


> and ignoring mioneymaking in strategy is the fastest growing
> financial behemoth ever, merely as an ironic side-effect.

This strikes me as wishful thinking. Ignoring moneymaking in


Like attention is some new commodity that replaces money? Why all the
stained glass windows, then, and Sunday church service, not to mention
the children saying their prayers before bed every night for the last
two thousand years? Hell, you couldn't get your way in the ancient
greek Agora without anyone's attention.

But what is the purpose of attention-maximization if not the
accumulation of more capital? Without money, the Church would have
been in a bad position to enforce ideological norms and would have
made a bad partner for the violent oligarchy. If all those Sunday
worshippers didn't turn into "conversions" (as they say in web
marketing) the Church would have been in trouble.

> For example, you can no longer ignore the fact that there is an
> enormous difference in power between somebody with 400,000 Twitter
> followers and those with merely 10.

Unless Twitter deletes their accounts. There's definitely the illusion
of power, but I would draw attention to Bruce Sterling's definition of
Web 2.0 as favela chic. It's not your real estate, just a few of your
belongings that you've smuggled in. You could wake up in the morning
to find them on the sidewalk.

Certain types of symbolic power can be taken away as quickly as they
are handed out by the powers-that-be.


Someone with 400,000 twitter followers posting rude photos really
doesn't have any particularly important power.

I mean, Katy Perry? Justin Bieber? Are they more powerful than Barack
Obama? He's number three to their one and two.

You could say that Perry and Bieber embody normative values that
are internalized by the public (their publics, anyway) through
performance, consumption and repetition, but that doesn't give Perry
or Bieber much more personal power than the lifeless sculptures of
idealized humanity in ancient Greece. Privilege, yes, absolutely. But
power? I don't think so.

Perry can get hired, for instance, to recruit women for the US
marines, thus attempting to drive male/female power relations in a
new direction, but she is interchangeable in that role, and the power
there comes from the money behind the campaign, which of course comes
from the state.


- Flick

* WHERE'S MY ARTICLE, WORLD? http://wikipedia.org/wiki/Flick_Harrison 


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