on the nature of conversation on the social web

Just substitute the word “conversation” in your head each time they say “argument”

Monty Python: Argument Clinic

So much of the “conversation” on the social web slash web 2.0 isn’t really conversation. At best, it’s a series of parallel monologues, occasionally overlapping or feeding each other. Or, they are (almost) nothing but superficial fluff, with the puffed up posture of “making a difference” or “changing the world” or “doing my part”.

Bullshit. Text posted to the internet (including this post) is just text. It’s not changing the world. It’s not making a real difference in the way we actually live our lives. It’s what we choose to do with the ideas floated around that can make a difference.

Conversation, on the social web, doesn’t really exist. It’s a mirage. An illusion. A shared mass delusion. And as long as we continue to participate in that delusion, we’re preventing any real, deep, meaningful conversations from taking place.