The Internet was not always this Thing that it is. At first, it was a little baby idea, a thing with great potential but which had no body or mind to substantiate any greater visions of importance. Slowly, that changed.
Internet Relay Chatrooms (IRCs) became a thing, and suddenly we were all connected more than we could’ve ever imagined, sharing files rapidly (well, relatively) and expanding the reach of culture. This was thanks to the developers of the infrastructure, sure, but also to key players in the system, like Dell Glover. The New Yorker‘s story of the CD manufacturing plant employee is a long, winding one, full of cryptic acronyms and possibly criminal motivations.
Perhaps Glover wasn’t a real innovator. But he was an unwitting player in the game of the freeconomy, which, good or bad, is at least interesting. That whole thing could’ve died this year, with companies trying to leverage internet speeds for wealth and joining forces for the lesser good. That didn’t happen though, because the public got real angry about it. Which doesn’t always happen for the right reasons. The public should get angry more often, except about meaningful things and not, like, someone losing football.
One thing the public will never get angry about is literature, because the “public,” as a collective noun that fits into quotation marks, does not care enough about literature to get angry about it. If only they knew, though: reading literature, and reading it carefully, would probably help the “public” with its anger issues. It doesn’t even have to be a first edition book, man. Even though first editions are super common in films today, nobody is going to judge if you’re reading like a 20th edition pocket-sized version of The Great Gatsby — at least not because it’s a 20th edition.
Old things are great, though, like this newly reprinted 1994 Jay McInerney profile of Chloë Sevigny. New things looking old is not always great, though, as can be seen by this breakdown of the last, lackluster Superman film, and how it looks with the color plugged back into it.
Now, go forth, and frolic in the weekend sun. Or don’t. Because sometimes, having no plans is better than having any plans at all.