A Synthesis of the Posts on this Site as Provided by the Site-Runner Himself, Which is Me, in the Form of a Critique of Said Posts and Other Thoughts
I expected my posts to be more cynical than they were after reading my first one, which was, broadly, a claim that the main internet companies work to “manufacture consent” among their users, obstructing truth to keep us uninformed and therefore wanting to use their services. With this as my starting piece, I thought that my others would follow suit. Yet, rereading my work, I found a distinct lack of cohesion on this front: the post on Feed was more purely literary analysis, the one of the algorithms at work in Google’s search engine was surprisingly optimistic, and “The End-Times dot dot dot” was an upbeat, first person memoir about end-of-the-world speculation. There was, simply put, a shift from the dire sentiments of the first post to an almost over-the-top buoyancy provided by the latest.
What could account for such a change?
This semester, we pretty opaquely labeled most of the large internet companies as Evil, capital E required. Why? They store our personal data in remote locations, sell it to third party companies, and profit off of our information. They ignore privacy concerns and continue to grow exponentially without remorse. They seem better built for destroying communities than bringing them together as they claim. They are almost perfect examples of the technological imaginary, showing just how terribly technology can seem to be a way to bring us to some new utopia, but are rather the harbinger of dystopia.
So why the ridiculousness in my posts? I can think of only one explanation: Absurdity. Albert Camus, existentialist philosopher of the 1940s-50s, claimed that Absurdity is a confrontation or opposition between human beings’ desire for meaning and the cold, empty meaninglessness of the universe. How does this relate to my posts (other than, say, allowing me to continue to ask myself rhetorical questions, which I seem to really like doing)? After my initial post disparaging the internet companies as hell-bent on keeping us uninformed, I think I recognized pretty quickly the meaninglessness of technology and internet culture, the way in which is serves mainly to pull us apart from one another. What else is there to do then, in the face the new Evil Empire that is Google, Facebook, Apple, etc.? Embrace absurdity. Embrace the ridiculous. Live it in spite of them. What else can we do?
My other option is to continue the one thread that has remained consistent in my posts. What is that you may ask? Be excessively long-winded. Go over the word limit by over double if possible. Because, why not?
I did not know what sort of gif I was looking for, but I think this fits, in a perfectly absurd way. From: https://giphy.com/gifs/art-film-interesting-8QJ9GnItSwjyU
word count: 448