Social media offer us an opportunity more spectacular than purchasing video greetings from American Idol contestants for our Facebook friends. They offer us the ability to play an active, conscious role in the development of our networked human future: from distributed communications networks impervious to the censorship of corporate or government regimes to new modes of value creation and exchange, or new open source democratic participation to collective consciousness and expression."Party Like It's 1992" (rushkoff.com)
So, in a world now overflowing with networking events, I decided to launch a new conference – Contact – a counter-conference, if you will, dedicated to folding the edges of net culture back to the middle where they belong.
The Internet was prefigured not by Wired but by BoingBoing and Mondo2000. The net revolution is happening on the streets of Cairo, not the Facebook page of PepsiCorp. And social networking is less a tool for kids to agree upon a brand of sport shoe than the unemployed workers of Cleveland to support their collective renaissance.
I’m tired of bemoaning the commercialization of the net, and would rather simply take it back or build another one capable of realizing the tremendous evolutionary potential that these media appeared to hold in store for us as they emerged twenty years ago.
Contact 2011 (contactcon.com)
David Pescovitz is Boing Boing's co-editor/managing partner. He's also a research director at Institute for the Future. On Instagram, he's @pesco.