I’m even less happy with this selection, in part because it almost didn’t happen.  The writing is even rougher than usual, and while it’s meant to fit in at the beginning of the chapter (a part of the intro I hadn’t written yet) I think it will need a lot of work before it goes anywhere (not least because it strays from one topic to another too easily).

I knew the honeymoon couldn’t last forever, but I didn’t expect the second of these to be so gut-wrenching… but maybe it will get easier?  I’m going to have to put some of these together at some point, too…

Here’s the text (possibly not even as long as it should be):

My argument in this project stems directly from the idea that as soon as people started quantifying time with technology and measuring the success of a technology by its contribution to speed, society began moving toward the changed conception of time that we have now.  So to that extent, what is happening is nothing new.  I also want to argue, though, that the earlier version of this still had a sense of time as divided, of discursive time as a separate entity from event time.  Things happened, and were then later written about and talked about.  The discursive world lagged behind the “real” world, and while the amount of lag was changed with various technologies, the idea of “simultaneity” was not really introduced until maybe the telegraph.  Even then, given the limits of that technology and the lack of widespread adoption, the reality for most people was still a bifurcated perception of events.  Wireless technologies and the Real World Web (WWW systems designed to be closely integrated with activities and experiences IRL) are pushing us toward a society in which the perception of events happening and the creation of a discursive world for those events is simultaneous.  What that means: not only are we now able to watch certain events as they are happening (streaming video from a Web cam sent to my iPhone through an app called “Live Cams,” for instance), but those events can be happening in far flung places, and I can be watching them from wherever my phone gets a signal.  I can immediately comment on those events, solicit comments from others, etc.  There is a movement here toward omnipresence, a state of being that eliminates the time-delay of news “travelling.”  News doesn’t travel anymore; it is accessed.  Or rather, the travel that occurs is so fast, so easy, and so routine, that it seems to disappear.  Twitter users posting updates about the riots in Iran didn’t have to think about how to get the information they were posting to people outside of their country; speed and ease-of-use make borders, distances, and delays seem to disappear (to a certain degree, and in some situations; the breakdown of this phenomenon is also worth mentioning, at some point).  This chapter focuses on the current “newspaper crisis,” and the ways in which that crisis contributes to (and is itself, in part, caused by) a changing perception of discursive time.

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