carl guderian on Mon, 25 May 2009 16:18:07 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> The California Ideology is back, in the 2009 edition

Just changed the name, really. Is he still dining out on this? Then  
again, if Kajagoogoo can do a reunion tour based on a couple of  
singles, why not?

> *Kevin Kelly:
> "We're not talking about your grandfather's socialism. In fact, there
> is a long list of past movements this new socialism is not. It is not
> class warfare. It is not anti-American; indeed, digital socialism may
> be the newest American innovation. While old-school socialism was an
> arm of the state, digital socialism is socialism without the state.
> This new brand of socialism currently operates in the realm of culture
> and economics, rather than government—for now.

In fact, this new definition is so far divorced from the old one  
that, when tested on a focus group of the internet's Sensible  
Liberals, it didn't cause them to clutch their pearls, glance about  
for the nearest fainting couch or worry about being banished from the  
Internet cocktail and weenie circuit.

> "I recognize that the word socialism is bound to make many readers
> twitch. It carries tremendous cultural baggage, as do the related
> terms communal, communitarian, and collective. I use socialismbecause
> technically it is the best word to indicate a range of technologies
> that rely for their power on social interactions. Broadly, collective
> action is what Web sites and Net-connected apps generate when they
> harness input from the global audience. Of course, there's rhetorical
> danger in lumping so many types of organization under such an
> inflammatory heading. But there are no unsoiled terms available, so we
> might as well redeem this one.

Makes me shrug, actually. From here it looks less like socialism than  
mutual-aid anarchism, and not very much like that either. But Kelly  
needn't worry. Socialism, being spelled with an "s" escapes being  
readily associated with those "c" words. Or "c" phrases, like "class  
warfare." And it's rhetorically safe to lump so many types of  
organization under a marketing-friendly heading (well, more so than  
"net communism," anyway).

> "When masses of people who own the means of production work toward a
> common goal and share their products in common, when they contribute
> labor without wages and enjoy the fruits free of charge

and the usual corporations have repeatedly shown they can capitalize  
on all this free labor

> it's not unreasonable to call that socialism...."

FTFY. Yep, it's Socialism 2.0, owned (sorry, pwn3d, as the kids say)  
by Rupert Murdoch and provided with a fink link for reporting  
creeping communism.

> *Lots more hot new American techno-socialism right over here!

We really need a for this kind of thing.

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