Other points that are generally missing from most breathless internet utopian essays are the fact that:

1. The infrastructure that enables the "internet", and most of its applications, are owned and operated by private corporations

...and, more recently...

2. That the end of "net neutrality" has potentially disastrous implications for all of the emancipatory notions of the net.

If there was anything revelatory about Stereyl's essay it would have perhaps been a nod to the end of "net neutrality" as perfectly indicative of the internet being dead, but this wasn't mentioned in the essay nor even foreseen as a potential consequence of private corporations moving to capitalize on what seems to be posited here as an autonomous social force disconnected from any class interests. I am wary of Medium as much as the next person (the Tech-Bro soap box par excellence), but this is a nice little run down of what the end of "net neutrality" might hold.

Another thing Stereyl perhaps meant, but didn't make it explicit, when she said “build new Internets” along side the dead one was the plan that is being proposed in this Medium article, namely municipal broadband. But one wonders how we treat the “Internet” differently when it comes to us from local government. What would happen to the utopian visions?

 


 

 

In what is still very much experimental participation, I published my first story on medium last night. The concept is novel and combines the all the mechanics of how we share and consume into a solid publishing machine for the "digital age." Algorithms of taste abound. At best (or worst), if this model catches on it will, in pure "siren server" fashion, end the need for the entire prestige-based community that currently revolves around contemporary writing, editing, and publishing. In their ideal scenario, I would never again have to endure the arduous (well, not so arduous at all) process of pitching an essay, getting approval, and then taking several rounds of edits before publishing. Their "collections" feature also essentially lets you appoint yourself editor of a magazine. It's the free market at work in the guarded realm of publishing. I made my first post a critique of the practice of estimating the read times for online articles. As you can imagine, this is something that is sort of symptomatic of the very raison d'etre of such sites, so I try to bring some context to this transformation.

It is a 4 minute read.

 

Posted
AuthorMike Pepi