"Man is God. He is everywhere, he is anybody, he knows everything. This is the Prometeus new world. All started with the Media Revolution, with Internet, at the end of the last century. Everything related to the old media vanished: Gutenberg, the copyright, the radio, the television, the publicity. The old world reacts: more restrictions for the copyright, new laws against non authorized copies. Napster, the music peer to peer company is sued. At the same time, free internet radio appears; TIVO, the internet television, allows to avoid publicity; the Wall Street Journal goes on line; Google launches Google news. Millions of people read daily the biggest on line newspaper. Ohmynews written by thousands of journalists; Flickr becomes the biggest repository in the history of photos, YouTube for movies. The power of the masses. A new figure emerges: the prosumer, a producer and a consumer of information. Anyone can be a prosumer. The news channels become available on Internet. The blogs become more influential than the old media. The newspapers are released for free. Wikipedia is the most complete encyclopedia ever. In 2007 Life magazine closes. The NYT sells its television and declares that the future is digital. BBC follows. In the main cities of the world people are connected for free. At the corners of the streets totems print pages from blogs and digital magazines. The virtual worlds are common places on the Internet for millions of people. A person can have multiple on line identities. Second Life launches the vocal avatar. The old media fight back. A tax is added on any screen; newspapers, radios and televisions are financed by the State; illegal download from the web is punished with years of jail. Around 2011 the tipping point is reached: the publicity investments are done on the Net. The electronic paper is a mass product: anyone can read anything on plastic paper. In 2015 newspapers and broadcasting television disappear, digital terrestrial is abandoned, the radio goes on the Internet. The media arena is less and less populated. Only the Tyrannosaurus Rex survives. The Net includes and unifies all the content. Google buys Microsoft. Amazon buys Yahoo! and become the world universal content leaders with BBC, CNN and CCTV. The concept of static information – books, articles, images – changes and is transformed into knowledge flow. The publicity is chosen by the content creators, by the authors and becomes information, comparison, experience. In 2020 Lawrence Lessig, the author of 'Free Culture', is the new US Secretary of Justice and declares the copyright illegal. Devices that replicate the five senses are available in the virtual worlds. The reality could be replicated in Second Life. Any one has an Agav (agent–avatar) that finds information, people, places in the virtual worlds. In 2022 Google launches Prometeus, the Agav standard interface. Amazon creates Place, a company that replicates reality. You can be on Mars, at the battle of Waterloo, at the Super Bowl as a person. It's real. In 2027 Second Life evolves into Spirit. People become who they want. And share the memory. The experiences. The feelings. Memory selling becomes a normal trading. In 2050 Prometeus buys Place and Spirit. Virtual life is the biggest market on the planet. Prometeus finances all the space missions to find new worlds for its customers: the terrestrial avatar. Experience is the new reality."
[Despite the clear problems with such techno–utopian predictions this clip highlights the significance of our current convergence inclination.]
"Spotify has come to the attention of those forward–thinking folks the work in record publishing, and has now been forced to restrict some of their playlists, and indeed remove many tracks altogether.
Basically, Spotify is a revolutionary web–based streaming service with an awesome collection of tunes and an excellent interface to create and share playlists.
Of course, it's just the sort of thing that makes record companies sweat. Despite the fact that there's no way to download or own any tracks on Spotify, this seems a concept too far–streaming and sharing music for discovery and enjoyment.
In a statement released last week, the Luxembourg company that owns Spotify said that it is removing songs and adding restrictions acording to country. This is because licensing varies from country to country, so something that we can play in the UK for example, may not be legal to broadcast on a playlist you share with someone from Sweden."
(Linsey Fryatt, 02 February 2009)
"Remember Apple's ad campaign during the heyday of Napster? It was 'Rip, Mix, Burn.' (video) The message was clear ? clip and mix your music your way. After all, it is your music. You bought it. Unfortunately, Apple ran into a bit of hot water over the campaign because the music industry (e.g. the content creators) felt it encouraged CD ripping and file sharing.
Today a similar controversy is bubbling, sparked by the Google Toolbar's new Autolink feature. It inserts links into online content that were not put there by the publisher. Now Time magazine is reporting that Marissa Mayer at Google says that the company will unlikely back down unless users demand it. Marissa, what are the bloggers, chop liver?
The question at heart is what right does a user have to change the content of a non–editable Web page they didn't create? Cory Doctorow says..
"It's my screen, and I should be able to control it; companies like Google and individuals should be able to provide tools and services to let me control it."
"This is such a slippery slope. Do you really want to go down this slope? If you allow Google to do this, you are opening a pandora's box that you'll never close."
I agree with Scoble. This is a pivotal discussion that bloggers, journalists, PR professionals and marketers need to jump into. Do you really want Google, Microsoft, George W. Bush, God or anyone adding links to your content? You know my position here. If I were you, I wouldn't want this ? unless the site is intentionally part of the read/write web, such as a wiki or a blog that is open to comments. Your content is your content. If you care about the Web, I urge you to sign this petition that I created and spread the word. We need to send a message to Google and others that messing with content is just plain wrong."
Steve Rubel (Senior Vice President, Edelman)
"I wanted to explore ideas about information visualisation, the Internet as a social construction as well as reveal an aspect of the relationships of the ruling class. Hopefully that process of revealing the connections is fascinating as well as provocative. I am still excited by the potential of the Internet, but the fruits of this socially produced network are still controlled by private hands. The potential is revealed every–day; Napster, Lexus Nexus, etc. but it is always held back by private interest. Anybody should be able to search for any image, or published work and locate it and view it or listen to it. We have the technology, we just need a social structure that can keep up with it.In They Rule I wanted to exploit the social nature of the Internet. The first thing that most Internet connected computer users do when they turn on their computers is check their email. The Internet has millions of potential social relations that can be formed, yet the formats for these communications has only just begun to develop. Designers of the communication channels on the Internet can affect the form that those relationships take. I could make a chatroom where swearwords are prohibited, or only the letter e could be typed, or only the person who had been in there the longest was able to type, or a chatroom in which everyone had to type in order to stay there, the possibilities are endless. Some formats will enable large–scale participatory debate, and other formats may be better suited for one to one personal communication. Companies are looking to shape these relations in specific ways, they see the relations in terms of customer and retailer, business to business, advertiser to consumer, advertiser to game player, advertiser to reader, etc. etc. The tools they build reflect the specific needs of these relationships. Therefore, much of the innovation on the Internet has come not from the commercial sector, despite their hype, but rather groups of people who have wanted to forge relationships other than those normally practiced in the commercial arena."
(Josh On: UnPlugged 2002)