“First, we forgot how to write letters. Then we stopped using the telephone. In a way we went back to writing letters, though in the truncated and fragmented form of threaded email and instant messages.
“After a time, we were given the tools to add voice, video, and still images to our electronic communication, but it was a tedious process. It wasn’t until the ability to link these things in a convenient matter came along that we started using more than just our words, but things were already stripping themselves down into literal sound bites. Short-form video grew popular, and then heavily edited to produce often humorous results.
“Here’s a good time to remind everyone that by and large these methods of communication have been used for humor, distraction, and entertainment. Serious discussion is largely absent from public forums, the place where one might expect such discussion to occur. We wanted jokes, we wanted to laugh, we wanted to be diverted from the horror of our realities.
“Is it any surprise, then, that the absolute forefront of the digital communication age happens on a heavily monitored public platform in fragmented, threaded, often impossible-to-follow ‘nonversations’? Thousands of participants fabricate an infinity of alternate realities where they are always right and fear of being left out or behind rules the day.
“Me? I still write letters.”
2014.09.08 – 2023.05.04