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Digital Vertigo

by Ben Romberg | 11.05.2012
Andrew Keen is an entrepreneur and author and gives an excellent TEDx Talk in Hungary about “Digital Vertigo” and what he sees as the “cult of social”.

Keen is known for his view that the Internet and Web 2.0 may be debasing culture as we know it.

Keen is especially concerned that the Internet undermines the authority of learned experts.

In 2006 in an essay in The Weekly Standard, Keen wrote that Web 2.0 is a “grand utopian movement” similar to “communist society” as described by Karl Marx.

He describes Free Culture proponent Lawrence Lessig as an “intellectual property communist”. His book The Cult of the Amateur, is critical of free, user-based Web sites such as Wikipedia that attempt to provide information.

Keen discusses often-overlooked problems with participatory technology and describes the Internet as a mirror of our culture. “We see irreverence, and vitality, and excitement. We see a youthfulness. But we also see, I think, many of the worst developments in modern cultural life, and, in particular, I think we see what I call digital narcissism, this embrace of the self.”

Very interesting talk, well worth a watch.