Re: Fwd: Faking It: The Internet Revolution Has Nothing to Do With the Nasdaq

Date: Fri Jan 18 2002 - 21:04:16 GMT

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    Subject: Re: Fwd: Faking It: The Internet Revolution Has Nothing to Do With the Nasdaq
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    At 04:37 PM 7/16/2001, Wade T.Smith wrote:

    > [Excerpted from -]
    > Faking It: The Internet Revolution Has Nothing to Do With the Nasdaq
    > When Internet stocks began their free fall in March 2000, the Internet
    > was finally put in its proper place. It was nothing more than a fast
    > delivery service for information -- that was what serious people who had
    > either lost a lot of money in the late stages of the Internet boom or,
    > more likely, failed to make money began to say now. The profit-making
    > potential of the Internet had been overrated, and so the social effects
    > of the Internet were presumed to be overrated. But they weren't. Speeding
    > up information was not the only thing the Internet had done. The Internet
    > had made it possible for people to thwart all sorts of rules and
    > conventions. It wasn't just the commercial order that was in flux. Many
    > forms of authority were secured by locks waiting to be picked. The
    > technology and money-making potential of the Internet were far less
    > interesting than the effects people were allowing it to have on their
    > lives and what these, in turn, said about those lives.
    > What was happening on the Internet buttressed a school of thought in
    > sociology known as role theory. The role theorists argue that we have no
    > "self" as such. Our selves are merely the masks we wear in response to
    > the social situations in which we find ourselves. The Internet had
    > offered up a new set of social situations, to which people had responded
    > by grabbing for a new set of masks. People take on the new tools they are
    > ready for and make use of only what they need, how they need it. If they
    > were using the Internet to experiment with their identities, it was
    > probably because they found their old identities inadequate. If the
    > Internet was giving the world a shove in a certain direction, it was
    > probably because the world already felt inclined to move in that
    > direction. The Internet was telling us what we wanted to become.
    > I have already written here about Jonathan Lebed, the 15-year-old boy in
    > the New Jersey suburbs who used the Internet to transform himself into a
    > stock market manipulator. Jonathan's story suggested that you couldn't
    > really understand what was happening on the Internet unless you
    > understood the conditions in the real world that led to what was
    > happening on the Internet -- and you couldn't understand those unless you
    > went there in person and looked around. Once you did that, you came to
    > appreciate all sorts of new truths. <snip>

    Thanks for posting this, Wade -- way back when.

    There are many reasons why someone would run multiple "selves" on the
    Internet, and correspondingly many hazards to dealing with those who run
    multiple "selves." The internet is so versatile that you can even have
    multiple people jointly writing a single "self" while writing separate
    "selves" under different names. I guess we just have to "Watch out!" (tm)

    --Aaron Lynch

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