Plato on the Internet
miércoles 17 de febrero de 2010
Two passages from Phaedrus:
Plato's (or should I say Socrates') complaints about the shortcomings of writing open, or perhaps continue, a long history of complaints against information technologies. We should not forget that Plato is writing at a crucial moment, when literacy is for the first time becoming available as a means of cultural exchange (and philosophical inquiry) to a relatively numerous class of people—an aristocracy, ok, but actually several aristocracies, in the different city-states. It is the age in which the sophists are providing the earliest equivalent of a secular humanistic higher education. Plato's conservative complaints against writing are ambivalent, as Derrida commented, being put in writing themselves. The spread of printed books in the Renaissance provides a similar period of crucial technological transition. And the age of universal linking (eg in blogs or in Google sidewikis) and self-publishing, ushered in by the Internet and especially by the Web 2.0, just like the earlier transitions, leads many people to complain about the decay of the old media. Quite commonly they do so using the new medium, if they want to keep pace with the times and be heard at all. Will the Internet make us dumber? I recommend to pursue the discussion in Kevin Kelly's recent post in The Technium: http://www.kk.org/thetechnium/archives/2010/01/the_2-billion-e.php
—As to the second passage, blogs and social networks might be just the thing Plato was looking for: a text which can answer back, or a text which has its father/author next to it. Whether that will clarify things or complicate them is of course open to question, because of course the Internet does superpose audiences and contexts—desirable and undesirable ones—in a way Plato finds quite alarming.
con referencia a: Plato on writing – Mumblings of a Platonist (ver en Google Sidewiki)
Martinus Scribloguerus, "Peri Bloghous"