Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Naomi S. Baron's Always On: Language in an Online and Mobile World

Always On by Naomi Baron is one of the most original and profound works on the changes wrought by our modern communication technologies. As for me, two and half years into blogging, I'm still fascinated by the form and though I've anounced (see sidebar) that I update on Mondays and Wednesdays, I generally blog almost daily. But I loathe cell phones, watch a gnat's portion of television, and am still not ready for facebook. As for LinkedIn, I have my doubts. Once in a while I accept an invitation to link, but it gets weird. The other day I tried to invite a fellow novelist to link, but LinkedIn refused to recognize my password--- which brought on multi-layered meditations on the bungle-fangled capitalist appropriation of social networks. Yesterday, on the advice of a fellow writer, I joined Goodreads.com, thinking it would be interesting to explore and perhaps help gain some visibility for my books. But why (when that's my publisher's job)? Or, why not (when it might be both fun and useful)? The eternal conundrum: what to do, what not to do?

One of Naomi Baron's conclusions:
"most of us have more freedom than we realize to shape our own usage of language technologies. We have substantial say over the extent to which we multitask."

More anon, probably.