So that whole social media “platform” this was an interesting ride, wasn’t it? Turns out, nothing is ever free, the new captains of industry are as selfish and narrow minded as the old ones, and we are just the product. Oh wait, we knew that already:
I submit that the materialist answer to the question — What is the commodity form of mass-produced, advertiser-supported communications under monopoly capitalism? — is audiences and readerships (hereafter referred to for simplicity as audiences). The material reality under monopoly capitalism is that all non-sleeping time of most of the population is work time.
Sure, it’s more complicated than what Dallas Smythe laid out in 1977, but is it also still as he laid it out in 1977. The irony is the social media companies, and media industries in general as more cynical about “content”–code for everything that fills up media, from the most meaningful personal thoughts and experiences, to text generated to draw in searches for medical information–than any Marxist professor ever could be.
There’s value in controlling the rights to one’s own writing–and more importantly, one’s own thoughts–and putting it out there on a website that doesn’t control who sees it and who doesn’t. For now I’m still on the big 3 social media companies, but I’m sick of writing thoughtful stuff and it disappearing on Facebook (“read more” is designed so you don’t), and I’m sick of trying to be clever on Twitter. Yay long form.
I missed blogs and blogging, so I am doing something about it.
Probably this will be more or less the same random collection of musings as before, except I’ll talk more about music and music tech because, why not? Also I’m in two bands and Carrie plays drums now. And I owe the world a NAMM 2019 report. Don’t know what NAMM is? All the better.
I still have cancer (coming up on 10 years), my voice still ebbs and flows, and I still love cats.
Other changes: I’ve moved from a shitty for-profit hosting company (ipowerweb, oh how I hated them) to an awesome local not-for-profit company. With their help, the back catalog is cleaned up*, so you can read about Pierre the Nationalist Dishwasher Salesman (and my very early days of learning about Quebec politics) without weird diacritical marks everywhere.
The words “I must respond to” have been banned from my thinking about my public writing. The internet is so full of that. If I want to talk about wave shapers or crip science while the world races to melt the polar ice caps, kill off legions of species, and flood coastal cities; while political leaders say and do awful things; and celebrities (regular and academic) continue to die and/or do stupid shit, I will do just that. Life is short. This is just writing.
*This blog is so old that WordPress changed the character set they use for their database. Also, I started on B2, because I didn’t know about WordPress.
PS–on academia.edu: I told you so. Academics should use websites they control themselves, or use their universities’ repositories. But more on that another time.