AN ESSAY (Another) IN FRAGMENT FORM
ON SOCIAL MEDIA
riverrun, past Eve and Adam's, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs.
1 Social media reduces distance between content and viewer 2 The social component of media is confirmed by one’s participation in its production. 3 The anonymous has been introduced once again into the production of content. 4 Ultimately there is no anonymity in social media. 5 The human need to be outside the home for a social experience has been eliminated by social media. 6 The social aspect of media rests on a delusion that the viewing of experience is experience itself. 7 The 21st century has invented a new form of loneliness that goes by the name of ‘social media.’ 8 Social media is a nearly immediate and instantaneous transmission. 9 Content becomes collaboration. 10 Social media can be a record of the revolution’s progress. (Think of the Arab spring, the Occupy Movement and how effectively news was communicated by means of Twitter.) 11 The hashtag is a means of organizing information on a global scale. 12 The rules of conduct regarding behavior are in a state of tempestuous flux in the age of social media. 13 Social media might be the greatest invention of the 21st century. 14 Consider this: there will be children for whom the idea of a world without social media will seem as impossible to conceive as an earlier generation found the idea of a world without electric light. 15 The blog is already antique in the epoch of an evolving social media. 16 No matter one’s lonely preoccupations, somewhere on the Internet there is a community willing to accept you as a member. 17 Social media might be the first time that a teenager will have access to the global conversation. 18 What will happen to certain remnants of the previous century? What will happen to books? To the idea of literacy? To the person who can only speak one language? 19 Social media is sharing on a massive scale. 20 Where is the line between the private life and the public life? Does social media eliminate once and for all the dream of a space where no one else can go? 21 Have we all become, once again, scribes transmitting the anonymous work, via the means of social media? 22 What use do we have of the professional critic in the world of social media? 23 Twitter, with its endless chatter, an infinitely flowing electronic version of Joyce’s novel Finnegans Wake. 24 Comment streams, an essential component of social media, are often filled, like actual streams, with poison and vile toxicities. 25 Where there is social media, there is community. 26 Social media can be a place where one learns what is happening in our world. 27 The news of the day can be found on social media. 28 In social media, everyone becomes writer, artist, producer, director, and critic. All roles become one in social media. 29 Social media at work: the 21st century in the context of the 20th century. Also: the great time waster! 30 Social media, with the invention of smart phone technology, now goes everywhere you do, and often tells everyone where you go. You have become a spy following yourself. 31 Social media has yet to produce a great work of art. Will it one day achieve the meandering genius of Ulysses, or the vast pathos of Remembrance of Things Past? 32 What will happen when commerce combines more directly with social media? Will people pay to be on Facebook, on LinkedIn, on Twitter, Tumblr, and Ello? 33 In relation to the hive mind of the Internet, what role does social media play? Is it the conversation in the living room, at the dinner table? Is it the dark blueprint hidden in the wall safe? 34 The emphasis initially was textual, now it appears as if the visual and aural has surpassed the textual. Is this an accurate assessment of social media’s tendencies? 35 Can one imagine a time when exhaustion sets in? When we all become tired of social media, go there less often? What would replace social media? Life itself?