Clay Shirky’s sharing the same title of this blog tosses readers into an anecdotal flurry right off the bat.  We’re introduced to a tale of petty thievery and an individual’s unending ambition to retrieve the stolen item.  It delves further into this theme, intricately weaving to and fro’ the perspectives of both parties.  This is a wicked representation of the power of a body of people.  One could easily relate this story to the entirety of the book’s main concepts due to how communication itself in both technology and humankind itself are potent when mixed.  Shirky muses on the effectiveness of social networking and if in identifying the criminal of only sixteen; Evan (the hero) crosses a line.

Although the ideological representation of justice; the other side is one of a more ugly nature.  There are resources taken advantage of; police systems bullied when otherwise better suited for priority crimes; and an online shame-fest following that is nothing short of expected.  Shirky says in as many words that this achievement was unlikely 5 years ago, but unimaginable as far back as 10.  Is that perhaps rightly so?  Reportedly, anonymous message board filed countless threats upon the girl, Sasha; both in physical and sexual harm.  This is something that Evan could have had very little control over, but nonetheless spawned in the process of organizing this manhunt.  He did so for a mobile phone.  One such that had been replaced already with the valuable content restored, exhausting more funds than the phone was initially worth.

It is concluded that whether just or not, the principle of the matter was enough to cause a massive media uproar.  It’s pinned to the front of “Here Comes Everybody” due to the ways in which this topic is relevant to how far communication has come in impacting our ability to assimilate and bring change upon our surroundings.


Vowell, Sarah. The Wordy Shipmates. New York: Riverhead, 2008. 1-72. Print.


When sampling some of the articles found on Timothy McSweeney’s Internet Tendency; one may find themselves knee-deep in a state of social misanthropy.  Has technology really given birth to such dangerous ground for creation?  More so, as it would seem in the entry “Internet-Age Writing Syllabus”, that self-definition has become a form of narcissism due to the effectiveness of social networking.  The sad fact of the matter is that people haven’t changed.  Unless you’re a practicing Tibetan Buddhist; you would be just as self-involved with or without four hundred followers on Tumblr (which goes without saying for any number of social networking media).  Although at times mildly jocular, the aforementioned article crosses the border of absurd at points:

“Especially since most readers of books, magazines, and newspapers are elderly and are thus already more likely to suffer from back ailments.”

To be frank, this blogger adores to curl up with any form of printed literature and is acquainted with many a kindred soul in that regard.  Though the main point or “joke” of this pseudo-syllabus is to poke fun at this generation of self-proclaimed “deep” and “1337” (leet) transcendentalists; and certainly no hard feelings are to be had in that respect, the process of weeding through for relevant or even chuckle-inducing remarks can become tedious.  Looking back, there are redeeming qualities beneath the ruins.  While both egocentrism and downright laziness are nothing new to society of today OR yesterday; an important point is made about two things.  For one, the term TMI or “too much information” is not only encouraged . . . It’s the standard.  Whether you’re coming out of the depths of a closet or just plain putting your experience with illegal substances out there:

“There’s no such thing as oversharing when you’re a writer.”

Now that’s a theme I can boogie with, readers.  Time and time again, we learn things about coworkers or even mentors that we just plain do not want to know.  This evil is accepted because their innermost thoughts and feelings are urged from them on Tumblr or via Tweets.  The other more obvious topic of interest is how darned accessible plagiarism has become through copy&paste capabilities.

The second assigned article in the same domain is noticeably more feasible in its humor.  It strikes a little closer to home in terms of truthfulness, as this generation loves to make excuses for its poor behavior.  Being a wordsmith becomes a gateway in sliding through with this mentality.  The joke here is obvious in the downright awful linguists attempting to take advantage of such a system in its anecdote-based foundation.  “College Writing Class Assignments with Real World Applications” plays on these extreme fabricated cases to express a viewpoint on common insincere text excuses and email cop-outs.  It makes for an entertaining piece with a unified theme; and in comparison to length from the first article it exceeds in substance.

See you, space cowboys.


Internet-Age Writing Syllabus

(Robert Lanham)

College Writing Class Assignments with Real-World Applications

(Cameron Dodd)