- Find sex partners (ladies, see my email link in the right sidebar)
- Identify and vilify external enemies (physicists)
- Venerate religious idols (Barry Wellman)
For all its brilliance, Shirky's essay suffers major flaws. He argues that "learning from experience is the worst possible way to learn something." I refer readers to group behavior pattern #1 for my first counter-example to this bizarre claim. Shirky also says, "Prior to the Internet, the last technology that had any real effect on the way people sat down and talked together was the table." By my estimation, the table pre-dates literacy, and so Shirky is ranking broadband access as more significant to talking than both reading and writing. Does that sound right to you?
I hope that my readers will check out Shirky's highly stimulating essay and come back to Connectedness for when I argue that the very title of his essay, "A Group Is Its Own Worst Enemy," is as problematic as the above two quotes.
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