Times' Frank Rich: The End of the Subversive Internet

Frank Rich in his Times column sometimes just gets it right. Today he writes about the new film about FaceBook, "The Social Network," which we saw in Paramus last night.

The theater was sold out and the people were mainly young and beautiful and busy texting on their phones until the lights went out and the trailers started (and maybe even after that).

We've felt the impact of the film even before seeing it. For the first time, a few days ago, we received a lawyer's letter demanding that we transfer to his clients an Internet domain that we've owned and developed for nine years.

One hit Internet movie is released and suddenly every Tom, Dick and Harry wants to get into the act. Amazing.

Frank Rich observes in "Facebook Politicians Are Not Your Friends," how profoundly the right wing bullies are using the Internet to suppress progress, to spread lies and propound conservative propaganda. Citing Malcolm Gladwell in New Yorker, Rich sums up that the new media has been coopted:
“With Facebook and Twitter and the like,” Gladwell wrote, “the traditional relationship between political authority and popular will” was supposed to be upended, so it would be “easier for the powerless to collaborate, coordinate, and give voice to their concerns.” Instead, he concluded, we ended up with the reverse: social media increase the efficiency of the existing order rather than empowering dissidents.
And so, the beat goes on.

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