No 975 Posted by fw, February 11, 2014
This post’s title is by the little known (to me), prolific, provocative Sam Smith, editor of The Progressive Review and author of a series of succinct musings which appear under the rubric Pocket Paradigms. The following entry was selected from this series for today’s post.
Facebook is the anti-Internet. It is a gated community designed to protect its residents from the incredible variety of the real Internet. Its guard house is there not to block undesired people, but unwanted information. In the early days, people had to use corporate sites such as AOL to tap into the Internet. Of course, these sites controlled what you could see or visit. Then came the free and open web and a huge increase in the information available to the average viewer. Facebook is an attempt to revive corporate control of the Internet by fooling people into thinking they can get all they want from its links. Of course, one of the prices you pay for this is that a guy named Zuckerberg gets to decide what you see.
Sam Smith is a journalist, activist and social critic who has been at the forefront of new ideas and new politics for more than four decades. He has been editing alternative publications since 1964, longer than almost anyone in the country. Sam has edited the Progressive Review for 49 years, wrote four books, been published in five anthologies, helped to start six organizations (including the DC Humanities Council, the national Green Party and the DC Statehood Party), was a plaintiff in three successful class action suits, served as a Coast Guard officer, and played in jazz bands for four decades. To learn more about the ebullient Mr. Smith, visit his lengthy Bio page.
For more about Sam Smith, see the Wikipedia entry.