The Internet was a great prototype for geeks and knowledge-worker bees.
But the cool kids and average folks have arrived, and the Internet has been kind of a mess for them — what with spammers and phishers and predators and nutballs all over.
So now Facebook brings us the successor to the Internet: the Likernet.
Instead of the Internet’s web of links, the Likernet offers a social graph of likes.
What the hell was a “link”, anyway? And “web” sounds like something you’re stuck in before a spider eats you. I know what I like, and it’s not chains and spiders.
The Internet interprets censorship as damage and routes around it, which was kind of nice. Unfortunately the Internet also interprets every unguarded email, form, website, and program as an opening into which to spray its unsolicited marketing, harassment, and malware.
In the Likernet, things only come to you from friends. I like friends. Who doesn’t? In the Likernet, you don’t need filters and antivirus software — a stern look or sarcastic remark is enough to let your friend know when they should cut out the monkey business.
Google did a bang-up job of making the anarchic shantytown Internet habitable, with their rankings and filters and reported-attack warnings and sandboxes, but Google can now take some well-earned time off. The shiny Facebook highrises are ready for occupancy, with their reliable doormen and standard modern social plugin appliances.
Facebook’s Likernet is a bright, safe, sanitary metropolis. It’s like Singapore, but in cyberspace with 100 times more citizens. Most current Internet residents will prefer to move to the Likernet. And even if you don’t want to move, you may find the Likernet rising all around you, leaving older Internet districts as blighted slums.
- China, 1.3 gigacitizens
geographic single-party “people’s republic”, president Hu Jintao and premier Wen Jiabao
- India, 1.2 gigacitizens
geographic federal republic/parliamentary democracy, prime minister Manmohan Singh
- Facebook, 400+ megacitizens
networked-membership corporate principality, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg
- United States, 308 megacitizens
geographic federal constitutional presidential republic, president Barack Obama
- Indonesia, 231 megacitizens
geographic presidential republic, president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
Good luck, Mark!
!#@!@^% deletionists are ruining Wikipedia. They’ll be the first against the wall when the revolution comes.
But what can we radical inclusionists do in the meantime?
The articles that do survive deletionism are useful, and important. Wikipedia remains a cultural treasure. So, the proper response to deletionism is not to boycott or withdraw from Wikipedia, but offer qualified support of the common base, all the while preparing for the eventual, inevitable, glorious inclusionist fork.
There’s been talk before of such forks, but none has yet taken off. A fork won’t happen tomorrow, and maybe not even next year. But that’s OK; inclusionist consciousness needs to spread. Eventually there will be far more contributors stung by deletionist wikilawyering than deletionists themselves, and then the time will be right.
The current generation of deletionists are but a transition phase, still hung up on Britannica-like definitions of ‘notability’ and ‘encyclopedic’.
The “sum of all human knowledge” will not contain deletionism, it will transcend deletionism. We will not bother to denounce it, we’ll dismiss it as a sad, bizarre chapter in human history whose last pages are even now being written.
Deletionists, we will bury you.
Learning from Twitter: History so far? Too many words! Less says more.
In yr 3000 history, Gutenberg Bible to Tweets just 1 chapter: “Published Word”. All US history? Just 1 more.
To speak to future, use future’s language and standards!
By future stds: Gettysburg Address, short? Give me a break! (Why! won’t! he! get! to! the! point!?) #lincolnfail
As favor to progeny, the Gettysburg Address, in format not tl;dr…
The Gettysburg Tweet.
Saving history for future readers needs many ruthless editors. Next up: trim all Wikipedia articles to <=140 characters. #twitpedia
Some thoughts on new horizons for online writing:
General Motors is bankrupt and the federal government has taken a controlling stake. NationalizedYet and ReprivatizedYet have been updated
NationalizedYet may need a third column between ‘yes’ and ‘no’, for companies where the executive branch has been acting like the owner, even without a formal majority interest. Chrysler, Citibank, and Bank of America could fall into that category.
A capital infusion around May 21 may have given the government a majority stake in GMAC, but it seems a formal announcement of GMAC’s new capital structure may not come until further fundraising is completed. For now GMAC still lives in the ‘no’ column