October 24, 2007

My _Guardian_ column - a letter to Lessig on "corruption"


"A modern version of snake-oil hucksterism is invoking 'the internet' as a cheap simplistic remedy for political malaise."

This time around, I can live with the title they gave it - "We have nothing to fear, except those who have something to sell". Though the column is really more about my own fear that Lawrence Lessig's corruption studying would fall victim to the siren song of net evangelism.

By Seth Finkelstein | posted in cyberblather , press | on October 24, 2007 08:30 PM (Infothought permalink)
Seth Finkelstein's Infothought blog (Wikipedia, Google, censorware, and an inside view of net-politics) - Syndicate site (subscribe, RSS)

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I thought it was an excellent article. Although I'm sure we all have different *specific* people and policies in mind, so who you see as an unwitting shill I might see as a fearless activist and vice versa, the general message of trust not in princes is a useful one even if it is only a standard bit of realistic analysis.

Posted by: Chris at October 26, 2007 04:51 AM

Why can't they just leave your titles as-are to begin with? Do you not submit a title? Are your titles so horribly written they would make loyal readers unsubscribe and flee? Are they full of spelling errors? Do you use long complex abbreviations in your titles which no one ever gets? Do you kidnap titles to self-advertise FinkelsteinsV1agraStore.com?

Posted by: Philipp Lenssen at October 27, 2007 09:14 AM

Chris: Thanks, always good to know someone's reading!

Philipp: I don't know. My title for this one was "A Letter To Lessig On Corruption". I know that it's the most attention-grabbing possibility, but it was a more accurate description.

Posted by: Seth Finkelstein at October 27, 2007 08:19 PM

Seth-- Very good. "One might even call the process 'corrupt'." -- that's putting it mildly! I like the way Shelley summed it up: "Will Mr. Lessig, then, begin his battle at homeľamong the attention brokers that surround him? Whom he calls friends, and compatriots?"

Not to lose faith in Shelley, but if there was a *different* event/story which had caught her up to the news about Lessig, I was curious what it was...

BTW, what's with the Guardian favoring TinyURL's? They're opaque and unfriendly. Your link to "ability to be heard" is this:

which improbably goes here:

Posted by: Jon Garfunkel at October 28, 2007 11:34 PM

Jon - Unfortunately, I don't have any connection to the Guardian's web URL policies.

Posted by: Seth Finkelstein at November 27, 2007 04:24 AM