Archive for the ‘ readings ’ Category

Being-with Facebook

from Jean-Luc Nancy, Being Singular Plural (2000) >

[Being singular plural means the essence of Being is only as coessence. In turn, coessence, or being-with (being-with-many), designates the essence of the co-,…… Coessentiality signifies the essential sharing of essentiality, sharing in the guise of assembling, as it were. This could also be put in the following way: if Being is being-with, then it is, in its being-with, the “with” constitutes Being; the with is not simply an addition. (p. 30)]

[“Self” defines the element in which “me” and “you,” and “we,” and “they,” can take place.”Self” determines the “as” of Being: if it is, it is as it is. It is “in itself” prior to any “ego,” prior to any presentable “property.” It is the “as” of all that is. This is not a presentable property, since it is presentation itself. Presentation is neither a propriety nor a state, but rather an event, the coming of something: of its coming into the world, where the “world” itself is the plane or the exposing of every coming. (p. 95)]


“You have to be somebody before you can share yourself”

:: Inspired by Calvin’s Schrag’s book The Self After Postmodernity, I am in pursuit of a philosophy of The Self After Facebook. For the autobiographical tone of this pursuit, I am indebted to Tom Sherman‘s Before and After the I-Bomb: An Artist in the Information Environment. I recently found out about another book that might be to my liking called, You Are Not a Gadget, by Jaron Lanier. I LOVE the UK edition front cover (see above). I’d like a poster of it for my office wall.

:: I’ve been thinking more about the social and interactive aspect of networks the past couple of days. Hannah Arendt (1958) wrote that “the subject appears and exists only in relation to others,” specifically through our actions and words – who you are is disclosed through your words and deeds. To examine the networked self, we need to not forget about the social behaviors of others, and of the network at large. To understand the post-Facebook “self” we need to understand the “social” in social media. The postself exists not merely through self-interpretation but through relations with others on/with/in the web. The internet has been described as a place where people engage in identity work, and an important arena for inquiry into the production of postmodern selves (Broad & Joos, 2004). The internet has evolved into a place/space for human interaction with social media. What is “social” about social media? (see Ron Burnett’s blog in the previous link for a good overview) What makes it more than a collection of individual actions?

To do: assess my data and its container

MEMO TO POSTSELF / FB = container / meta-software?

re: iNforMaTioN > “…as the power of computing increases and we must begin to think about the relationship between consciousness and our organization and dissemination of data. We must also reconsider how the organization of data reflects our collective shifts in perception and our relation to information and knowledge. Knowledge production is undergoing a radical reorganization because of the huge amount of data that is systematically being digitized and made available on the Internet. This digital reorganization means that we can anticipate the relatively fast-paced demand for, and creation of, new systems and establishments. Artists are in a unique position to participate in this process as “information architects” using data as raw material.” (Vesna, 2007)

re: SpaCe > “How one moves through a physical space such as a building or a particular room is very much determined by the way an architect has conceived it….The work presented within these spaces, in other words, cannot be viewed without a strong sense of their containers. Similarly, when navigating through various software “containers” and inputting our data, we are in effect following the established parameters of information architecture. ….the idea of an overarching meta-software that is intended to be used by one and all is alarming.” (Vesna, 2007)

*quotes above from Victoria Vesna’s “Seeing the World in a Grain of Sand: The Database Aesthetics of Everything,” in Victoria Vesna (Ed.), Database Aesthetics: Art in the Age of Information Overflow (2007)


re: eStaBliShiNg tHe iNdiviDuaL iN SOcial NetwOrk teMpLateS

“Often users can only choose from a limited set of templates. In networks that allow even less modification of the overall look , users attempt to individualize themselves by using characters (^_^) in their user names…Unlike the open source movement on Wikipedia…participants of social networks do not seem to follow a common noble goal, or celebrate a community spirit. The focus here lies on the individual, like the “i” in iTunes, the “my” in MySpace, the “you” in YouTube or the “we” in Wii (emphasizing the option of multiple individuals playing together). Even the shape of the “i” reinforces this sentiment. Similar to icons used to represent the user – a neutral figure which on one hand could apply to almost anybody, but on the other hand expresses personalization and individuality. The “i”, the torso with a faceless head stands for a promise of individuality and a big pool of me’s.”
~ Dennis Knopf, “Defriending the Web” in Digital Folklore (2009)

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