2007: Year of the Kitteh!
When future archeologists maneuver their space-chariots over the smoldering ruins of our long-dead cities, they will discover–like broken shards of pottery suggesting our fallen civilization–the Internet. What cultural icon will stand as testament to our generation’s lives? I think it will be something to do with cats.
Cats. The Internet really likes cats (or “kittehs,” as they’ve come to be known).
Internet denizens have come up with thousands of creative riffs on the primate’s simple appreciation for the feline: there’s the near-protean permutations of the humble lolcat, chattycats and ceiling fan cats, and even cats in sinks. To honor the year in which the cat finally took over the world wide web, Neatorama has posted a roundup: The Year In Cats. The basic joke behind these “cat memes” is at first nearly impenetrable. But once you get it, you’ll be giggling to yourself for minutes, and your friends–whose inboxes you will soon flood with cute kitty pictures–will stop being your friends.
Photo by Rachel Pumroy.
Open Systems and Glass Ceilings
Has the over-representation of “well-off white men” led to the creation of a glass ceiling in the digital realm, where despite the lack of a barrier to entry, minority voices are still marginalized?
Wikipedia’s Balancing Act
Wikipedia’s standards have never been higher, but the site needs to attract a new generation of editors to survive.
Social Networking for a Better World
The rise of
corporate-owned social media raises many flags about our online security and
the future of the digital commons. The solution, says theorist Michael Albert,
is a different kind of network altogether.