A Funny Think Happened on the Way to the Forum of Ideas

I miss Zero Mostel. I wonder how he'd use laughter to ponder and probe our Web World of today and tomorrow, and how Zero would raise concerns about the Web's privacy protections. But that's a blog for another day...

Today, a friend sent me the link for Professor Mike Wesch's University of Kansas Digital Ethnography animation of the Web's conversion on ideas, and transmission of ideas, called Web 2.0 … The Machine is Us/ing Us:.

It's a fascinating look inside the lines of code you're reading now, much like the roller coaster ride animation in 3D I remember seeing at the 1964 New York Worlds Fair.

The digital linking of ideas can be achieved even though the expressions of ideas remain locked in the 20th century lore of copyright, patent and trademark. Telling you to turn left at the corner of the Peninsula Diner on Hamilton Street in Palo Alto does not give you the right to a free extra thick chocolate milkshake there. Calls for the end to music copyright and the other constraints on informational content ownership in the print and hard copy world defy the reality of creative transactions and links to them.

As the Digital Ethnography animation ends, it poses apt questions for our digitizing age.

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