Monday, April 7, 2008

Srinivasan and Glocalization

While listening to Srinivasan speak this morning, I started to think about the relationship between “glocalization” and immediacy. This first occurred to me when I was reading the “Tags, RSS, Weblogs and other responses to diversity” section of “Return to Babel.” In it, Srinivasan writes, “RSS feeds can now add a whole new level of trusted local knowledge to different individuals' and communities' web worlds, which encompass weblogs, tagging and other social computing systems. Crucially the trust in the knowledge and the decision to accept a feed both reside in the subscribing individuals. (8)” I think perhaps I have a different knowledge of RSS than Srinivasan; the feeds that I subscribe to don’t really give me any more freedom or sense of community. They just serve as a sort of shortcut for letting me know when my favorite sites are updated. Even though I find their usefulness to be of less significance than Srinivasan, however, the fact remains that my access to new, specific kinds of information becomes much more immediate and recent. As part of the community of feed-readers, I suppose we create a sort of community of internet-dwellers who have the same information at the same time. This thought process, though, did not lead me to a knowledge-scape of Appadurai’s writing, but instead to Goertzel’s World Wide Brain idea. As Professor Chun mentioned in class today, this WWB is not a Matrix-type system in which the human brain becomes a battery; we get to retain our “minds” as well as our “brains.” But if I am the recipient of an RSS feed, I am effectively submitting my brain into the glocal network of informed internetters. Although I retain my autonomy, I don’t really retain the independence of my knowledge, since everyone else receiving the feed knows exactly what I do, when I do.

And, just to be totally creepy:

No comments: