Cal Newport‘s Latest Blogpost
On Social Media and Its Discontents
“The social internet describes the general ways in which the global communication network and open protocols known as “the internet” enable good things like connecting people, spreading information, and supporting expression and activism.
Social media, by contrast, describes the attempt to privatize these capabilities by large companies within the newly emerged algorithmic attention economy, a particularly virulent strain of the attention sector that leverages personal data and sophisticated algorithms to ruthlessly siphon users’ cognitive capital.
I support the social internet. I’m incredibly wary of social media.
Understanding the difference between these two statements is crucial if we’re going to make progress on the issues surrounding social media that have, during the last year, finally entered our mainstream cultural conversation.”