Surplus in the marketplace of communication

“This vanguard is not about computers. Computers are over….The new economy is about communication, deep and wide. Communication is the foundation of society, of our culture, of our humanity, of our own individual identity, and of all economic systems. This is why networks are such a big deal. Communication is so close to culture and society itself that the effects of technologizing it are beyond the scale of a mere industrial-sector cycle. Communication, and its ally computers, is a special case in economic history. Not because it happens to be the fashionable leading business sector of our day, but because its cultural, technological, and conceptual impacts reverberate at the root of our lives.” Kevin Kelly

More than 10 years after publication, Kevin Kelly’s observation that the frontier of technology is communication is still true. Social media only makes it more true. Communication is our current mode of production and of consumption. Not only of ideas, goods, and services, but of relationships also.And increasingly, these collapse into the same mediated mode of production and distribution — an increasingly socialized mass media, and an increasingly mainstreamed social media.

Collapse of the distance between production and consumption, facilitated by the fact that distribution occurs through gestural and linguistic exchange (twitter, facebook, et al) is eliminating not only the friction that once defined a world of material scarcity, but contributes to the excess of noise and redundancy that pervades a system of production suffering from surplus, and fighting for attention.

 

 

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