Wrecking The Web?

Dec 21 2012 @ 12:36pm

Navneet Alang asked Tim Carmody of The Verge whether the Internet is getting worse as we become more dependent on big services like Facebook, Twitter, Netflix and Google’s suite of products:

This is the paradox of the contemporary internet, in which the structures through which social, political and commercial activity occur are monetized in ways that seem, if not exploitative, then at least remarkably traditional and counter to the web’s early goals.

Anil Dash makes related arguments. Felix Salmon explains why these complaints fall on deaf ears:

[A]s the number of people online has exploded, there’s always going to be a feeling that things were much better and more civilized back when Usenet was actually useful, or when links hadn’t been monetized by Google, or when everybody freely gave out their email address because no one worried about spam. But any network becomes messier as it grows, and one of the things that Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and Pinterest do is that they declutter the web and make it user-friendly.