I don't ever go on the..
I don't ever go on the Internet. I don't even know how it works.
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I think the large part of the function of the Internet is it is archival. It's unreliable to the extent that word on the street is unreliable. It's no more unreliable than that. You can find the truth on the street if you work at it. I don't think of the Internet or the virtual as being inherently inferior to the so-called real.
But I'm acutely aware that the possibility of fraud is even more prevalent in today's world because of the Internet and cell phones and the opportunity for instant communication with strangers.
What is new is the multiplying reach and volume of the Internet, concentrating the toxicity of destructive emotions and circulating them in the political bloodstream with unparalleled velocity.
It always seemed to me ironic that the McCain campaign kept referring sneeringly to Obama's meager resume - 'a mere community organizer!' - before he entered electoral politics. It was Obama's experience as a community organizer that proved such a killer app when he applied that skill to the Internet.
We judge on the basis of what somebody looks like, skin color, whether we think they're beautiful or not. That space on the Internet allows you to converse with somebody with none of those things involved.
Once you have speech, you don't have to wait for natural selection! If you want more strength, you build a stealth bomber; if you don't like bacteria, you invent penicillin; if you want to communicate faster, you invent the Internet. Once speech evolved, all of human life changed.
Now, many public libraries want to lend e-books, not simply to patrons who come in to download, but to anybody with a reading device, a library card and an Internet connection. In this new reality, the only incentive to buy, rather than borrow, an e-book is the fact that the lent copy vanishes after a couple of weeks.
I'm not up on the Internet, but I hear that is a democratic possibility. People can connect with each other. I think people are ready for something, but there is no leadership to offer it to them. People are ready to say, 'Yes, we are part of a world.'
I think people respond to dystopian stories because they're ways of acting out anxieties that we have and fears that we have about the future. So much media's coming at you over the Internet, your brain gets overloaded. You don't know what to do with it. And one thing you can do with it is read a story.
An Internet meme is a hijacking of the original idea. Instead of mutating by random change and spreading by a form of Darwinian selection, Internet memes are altered deliberately by human creativity. There is no attempt at accuracy of copying, as with genes - and as with memes in their original version.
In the original introduction to the word meme in the last chapter of 'The Selfish Gene,' I did actually use the metaphor of a 'virus.' So when anybody talks about something going viral on the Internet, that is exactly what a meme is, and it looks as though the word has been appropriated for a subset of that.
We tend to forget that in those days before the Internet and HBO and Imax and 3-D cinema, opera was the thing. Opera and theatre. If you were a man of the world and you mingled among the happy few, you would be at the opera.
There's less critical thinking going on in this country on a Main Street level - forget about the media - than ever before. We've never needed people to think more critically than now, and they've taken a big nap.
With 'The Social Network,' I got into it at first because frankly I thought there was a cool courtroom drama to be had with the intellectual properties. And then what further drew me in was that the most extraordinary social networking device ever created was created by the world's most antisocial person. I liked that story.
The way we divorce in this country hurts people on the deepest level. The ripple effect and resonance of it is remarkable, vast - vast - and if I ever went into Parliament, I would become very involved in that.
The dangers of not thinking clearly are much greater now than ever before. It's not that there's something new in our way of thinking - it's that credulous and confused thinking can be much more lethal in ways it was never before.
I have all of the Apple products. Everything I've ever written, I've written on a Mac. My first computer, my roommates and I chipped in, and we got that first Macintosh - 128K. It had as much memory as a greeting card that plays music.