Monday, June 4, 2007


First off, what I found the most interesting when I started reading this was that I was able to understand to what Terranova was talking about when she spoke of MUDs, MOOs, and the "unreal" empty space. That being said, I think that our society, as fast paced and growing as it is, is still relatively naive about the Internet as a whole. The larger part of our society is completely unaware of these so called empty spaces, much less the labor that goes into making them tick. Because of our constantly changing world, the word "labor" becomes such a broad term. Terranova speaks of the Internet in particular, describing it as a "flexibility of the workforce." This idea of free labor is hard to fight in a time and age like ours where a lot of the things online are taken for granted and basically free. The Internet opens up doors that is a giant Pandora's box. "Free labor is the moment where this knowledgeable consumption of culture is translated into productive activities that are pleasurably embraced and at the same time often shamelessly exploited." As bad as it sounds, we as consumers love free stuff, and are not afraid of, as she puts it, exploiting. With all the scares of fines and arrests, people still download free music and free movies all the time without a second thought, yet when asked to give up something for free, no one wants to. It is interesting what she says about the open source movement, though: it relies on this free labor, and had even gotten $7 million a month for AOL. The big thing I realized though, is that it is a necessary to building the open source market.

King asks, "What are the politics of making distinctions between the oral and the written?" This is followed by a series of questions clarifying exactly what she researches including questions about assumptions, power, historical divides, and the practical. King uses feminism to research the "technologies of knowledge-making." How I see it, is the relationship between technology, the improvements of culture throughout the years, and the real world. I have never heard of "writing technologies," and am interested in what it is exactly. King says that it is to engage the objects intertwined with stories, and that these stories are important in the overall picture. It is because of these stories that technology has glamour and depth, yet I'm still confused on what stories of technology entails. Maybe it is my need for a definition and the lack of a concrete one, that prevents me from understanding.

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