The Internet is Television

The internet was once only about sharing information on a peer-to-peer basis. Inevitably, every aspect of the web is now commodified. The techniques of TV-makers to capture and control audiences are the same ones used by Facebook, Google, et al., strategies that are getting so much negative attention now. Techniques like encouraging passive consumption, addiction, and a feeling of “missing out” when not tuned in. Not to mention the use of captured personal data for profit (TV could only envy this degree of eyeball-mining — their version was the primitive Nielsen rating system).

The web has brought huge benefits into our daily lives. But under capitalism, the expense of maintaining the web had to be underwritten by advertising. So, like TV, the web became a vast marketplace.

I think that the re-emerging trend toward personal blogs (or websites) can be a way to start re-emphasizing the pre-commercial, purely communicative promise of the web.