Jonathan Peizer offers up some skepticism about Time Magazine’s designation of “you” as Person Of The Year:
I am just not ready to give into a rose-colored panacea that seemingly lulls me into a false sense of who is in charge and the life-changing benefits of a â€œthingâ€. Just because a new form of interactive, networked and seemingly grass-roots technology is introduced, we must not forget that however easy, cool and innovative it seems, it is still only a process. Who controls the discussion and subsequent actions using any technology [process] is a separate issue. When the world actually becomes a better place for most people, by a measurable factor, and our control of the Information Age is identified as a significant contributor that helped people make better life decisions â€” for themselves, their communities and the planet â€” then iâ€™ll be a true believer.
To my mind individual control of the Information Age is justifiable as the â€œItâ€ thing of the year if it results in the technological equivalent of a polio vaccine – something that makes the world a better place â€” YouTube, Myspace and the ability to better find, post and distribute stupid pet tricks video clips doesnâ€™t quite cut it â€” although outing what stupid politicians say on the campaign trail to insure they donâ€™t get elected to do further damage is certainly a step in the right direction.
I find myself agreeing wholeheartedly. Thanks, Jonathan, for voicing this skepticism so eloquently. If you’re a “progressive techie” who hasn’t yet read Jerry Mander’s “In The Absence of the Sacred,” you should treat yourself to an early Christmas present.
“Web 2.0” is way oversold. I think we’ll look back on this as something of a “jump the shark” moment.