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Re: <nettime> Evgeny Morozov and the Perils of "Highbrow Journalism"
gab fest on Thu, 16 Oct 2014 12:14:56 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> Evgeny Morozov and the Perils of "Highbrow Journalism"

Organized envy sounds like a fair characterization. But the organization 
is small and centered on a few friends and associates of Medina. Then 
there are others engaging in opportunistic one-offs on Twitter and 
Facebook, at various levels of engagement.

It's far from clear that Morozov has "made a mistake." Everyone admits 
there is no plagiarism. The basic problem seems to be that there has 
only been one notable book written about Cybersyn, and given that 
limitation, it is easy to contend that the topic, the ideas it generates 
and the primary sources are the "property" of the author of that work. 
When Morozov published an account of his research, and a photograph of 
the materials, the response was along the lines of "oh so you ransacked 
her bibliography too." It was also later alleged that not only did he 
make off with concepts from the work, but that he also failed to steal 
the best ones. Twitter forensics, however, have yet to produce one 
suspect paraphrase, let alone a verbatim borrowing. It's not like the 
Zizek thing.

The melodramatic narratives constructed around his personality aren't 
very convincing. He seems resilient and agile, judging by his conference 
appearances rather than his Twitter feed.

Maybe it's the odd career arc that's problematic: successful author 
first, graduate student second. He got to swing his axe before he ground 
it. So it's easy to suggest he's a clumsy ideologue.
That's another trope: he's only seeking an advanced degree to sharpen 
his existing biases - as if that's a bad thing.

All of which makes it difficult to critique whatever shortcomings are 
actually present in his work.

On 10/14/14 6:17 AM, Geert Lovink wrote:
>Dear nettimers,
>did anyone of you follow this story? What's behind all this? I suppose 
>Morozov is human and makes mistakes. He is part of the mainstream media 
>landscape and has to deliver his journalistic pieces in order to stay into 
>these circles. That's when one starts to make mistakes after a while, I 
>suppose. As a journalist it would be easier to forgive him copying without 
>attribution (even though he mentioned the author in this case). The problem 
>is: Morozov is a very visible public intellectual, a critic, and maybe soon 
>even an academic (after he has gone through the longish American PhD 
>ritual). Morozov is the most wellknown and visible net critic, let's face



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