David Golumbia on Thu, 3 Feb 2011 20:33:58 +0100 (CET)

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Re: <nettime> Egyptian Revolution: 2nd decolonialisation for all

i have been wanting to remark for a while on a silence is not
just deafening, but revelatory. it makes these lists seem like "places to
talk about politics so long as and only in so far as you think politics are
being radically transformed by one electronic technology or another." in
such a context, the fact of resistance is more important than its success,
so that we can talk about failed uprisings as revolutions.

the members of the various lists you mention are among the smartest and most
attentive people i know in the world. Obviously nettime, idc, aoir, etc.,
are not forums for discussion of world politics. Yet their transient dips
into such topics (like those of mass media pundints) come to seem both
interested and strangely quietist. "we're interested in your
revolution/catastrophe/big political change if it is fueled by
twitter/facebook/AJAX and if one government or another uses the internet to
access or block parts of the huge political conversation; otherwise, don't
care much."

very few of the egyptian protestors appear to be using electronic devices
when they are protesting, even as our pundints narrate over the pictures
with stories about facebook transforming the political fabric.

this is not to deny the role of various forms of social media in all forms
of political activity. it is to ask what exactly are we talking about, and
in what way do we see our discussion itself as contributing to contemporary


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