The critical delusion of the condition of digitisation

TitleThe critical delusion of the condition of digitisation
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2004
AuthorsDafermos, G
Date PublishedDecember

This essay analyses how digital media prosthetics, institutionalisation (in particular the manifestations of copyright and patent law which lurk behind vested interests in controlling the transition to a vastly more powerful new world), and the imperatives of corporate planning have come into a conflict so fierce that shared lived experience, increasingly, is forced to undergo a rapid process of commodification. This struggle, which can no longer be defined through the lens of geography or class alone, in turn, points to a not too distant future in which commons-based peer production/consumption is exploited within the context of intense social taylorism and digital fordism with the ultimate goal to turn culture into a paid-for experience, and hence moving the terrain of struggle away from the surplus value of labour to the legitimacy of knowledge sharing and pervasive networking, and how the latter can be monetised and controlled in accordance with anarcho-capitalist agendas. Obviously, the question which we ought to pose to ourselves is how the revolutionary demands of hacking can be guided, assembled, and reproduced, so that this process of commodification is consciously resisted by technology developers and users alike, artists, and all those whose creativity and desire for socially conscious technological innovation and emergent social co-operation have been enhanced by the digital condition we're increasingly in the centre of.

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