"Untangling the Web covers the spectrum of stuff we need to think about…to topics to which we don’t pay enough attention"
Prof John Naughton, who’s most recent book about the Web is worth a read, reviewed Untangling the Web: What the Internet is Doing to You in this weekend’s Observer:
Untangling the Web, is a collection of 17 thoughtful essays on the impact of comprehensive networking on our lives. These essays cover the spectrum of stuff we need to think about – from the obvious ones (such as privacy, identity, the concept of online “friendship” and the psychological and social impact of the net) to topics to which we don’t pay enough attention (such as the ways in which online anonymity empowers those who are physically disabled or disfigured, and what medics sneeringly call “cyberchondria" – the ways in which the net can increase health anxieties)
The Serendipity Engine also gets a mention.
Read the whole thing here.
Buy Untangling the Web at the Guardian bookshop (get 50% off with code UTW07FG), on the Faber & Faber website, on UK Amazon or on US Amazon. Other territories are available too!
Your encouragement and readership throughout the four year research and writing process of Untangling the Web: What the Internet Is Doing to You, from when it was a twinkle in The Observer and The Guardian's eyes all the way to dead tree publication, is seriously appreciated.
I want to celebrate that.
So come back Monday for my gift to you.
"Most governments have focused on technical solutions, believing
that removing or blocking radicalising material on the internet will
solve the problem. Yet, this report shows that any strategy that relies
on reducing the availability of content alone is bound to be crude,
expensive and counterproductive. Radicalisation is largely a real-world
phenomenon that cannot be dealt with simply by ‘pulling the plug’."
Stevens, T. and Neumann, P.R. (2009). Countering Online Radicalisation: A Strategy for Action. The International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence, Kings College: London.
(full text pdf)
I spoke with the report’s author Tim Stevens for The Guardian’s Tech Weekly about how things have and have not changed since this report was written in 2009. Results up shortly.
"What mainly goes up… is not the core network but the number of casual contacts that people track more passively"
The Social Brain Hypothesis (Dunbar, 1998) tested on Facebook, using generic behavioural closeness metrics (number of friends who people a) post on their wall, status updates or photos; or b) message/chat with), by the social network’s in-house sociologist Cameron Marlow.
from The Economist (26 Feb 2009): Social networks: Primates on Facebook