Technology

A Net Skeptic's Conservative Manifesto

Anti-tech grump Evgeny Morozov overstates his case.

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To Save Everything, Click Here: The Folly of Technological Solutionism, by Evgeny Morozov, Public Affairs, 415 pages, $28.99

Evgeny Morozov's latest book, To Save Everything, Click Here, follows the same blueprint as his first book, 2011's The Net Delusion. He takes the over-zealous ramblings of a handful of Internet evangelists, suggests that Pollyannas like them are all around us, and then argues, implausibly, that their very ideas threaten to undermine our culture or humanity in some fashion. Along the way, he doles out generous heapings of unremitting, snarky scorn.

In the earlier book, Morozov used this formula to challenge the hyper-optimism that has infused debates over the Internet's role in advancing human freedom and even regime change. In To Save Everything, the target is the way people invoke "the Internet" as the cure-all to every problem under the sun.

Morozov rejects the idea that "technology can make us better," and he rails against "technological solutionism," defined here as "recasting all complex social situations either as neatly defined problems with definitive, computable solutions or as transparent and self-evident processes that can be easily optimized" through algorithms or other digital fixes. These include, among other things, efforts to improve politics and elections through digital transparency, efforts to shore up the publishing business via crowdsourcing, and the use of various self-tracking technologies to monitor and improve our personal health.

He castigates those who would engage in a "mindless pursuit of this silicon Eden," cautions that "attaining technological perfection, without attending to the intricacies of the human condition and accounting for the complex world of practices and traditions, might not be worth the price," and argues that solutionism "should be resisted, circumvented, and unlearned."

Morozov effectively pricks the bubble of irrational exuberance that has always accompanied new digital technologies. But as with his previous book, he refuses to quit while he's ahead. Instead, he unsuccessfully labors to convince us that the very concept of "the Internet" holds no inherent meaning and that we have all been suffering from a sort of mass delusion about its existence. Worse yet, he offers only a limited and sometimes contradictory roadmap for building a better world and integrating new information technologies into it along the way.

The result is a treatise that is difficult to embrace, despite its sagacious advice not to allow our tools to become ends in and of themselves. Morozov wants to make sure technology never trumps our humanity, but in the process he presents a vision of reality that is virtual at best.

Pummeling the Pollyannas

Morozov's first mission in the book—one that he generally accomplishes—is to prove that changing the world for the better is damned hard, and that no amount of blustery tech boosterism can solve such difficult problems as overcoming tyrannical rulers, curing disease, reducing crime, ending hunger, or better educating children. With wicked wit and palpable glee, Morozov demolishes simplistic notions that technology is a magical elixir for the world's worst maladies.

More profoundly, he cautions that the very act of trying to address these problems by reducing them to efficiency-enhancing algorithms is potentially dehumanizing. "We shouldn't mistake the easy availability of quick technological fixes for their moral desirability," he argues. No matter what the Net boosters say, good intentions plus cool technology does not always equal positive results.

Morozov's enemies list in this regard hasn't changed much since the previous book. There are villains from the business world (Google's Eric Schmidt and Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg), the commentariat (Clay Shirky, Jeff Jarvis, Kevin Kelly), and the government (former State Department Senior Advisor for Innovation Alex Ross). These and other techno-evangelists earn Morozov's unrelenting scorn because, he claims, their brand of "Internet-centrism" has "mangled how we think about the past, the present, and the future of technology regulation" and has diverted us "from a more robust debate about digital technologies."

But Morozov overstates things here considerably. There isn't any lack of "robust debate" about digital technologies and how to think about or even regulate them. Name just about any information technology you can think of—broadband networks, social networks, email services, ecommerce sites, smartphones and their various apps, geolocation technologies, texting, Twitter—and you'll find plenty of critics and regulatory proposals.

There has grown in recent years a veritable cottage industry of cyber-cranks who publish a constant stream of books and essays with titles like, "How the Internet is Killing Our [fill in the blank]."  For every pundit guilty of overly exuberant Internet solutionism, you can find another guilty of over-simplified Internet victimization.

Against Technological Determinism

Morozov's approach to technological criticism is somewhat unique in that it rejects all varieties of technological determinism, or the belief that—for better or for worse—technology drives history. There are "hard" and "soft" varieties of technological determinism that vary by the degree to which scholars believe technology shapes history. But Morozov doesn't have much patience with any variant. He also doesn't place much faith in the argument that human beings eventually adapt to new technological realities and gradually assimilate new tools into their lives. He equates such thinking with what he calls it "technological defeatism," or the belief that "resistance is futile."

Mostly, Morozov doesn't approve of the way these debates are framed because he doesn't believe that "the Internet" even exists: It's just a meaningless abstraction pushed on us by those utopian Net enthusiasts, he insists. The book is filled with scare quotes around concepts the author finds nonsensical: "Internet freedom," "Internet values," "online," "marketplace," "ideas," "crowds," "networks," "social media," "architecture," "problems," "solve problems," "open," "openness," "open government," "transparency" and many others.

Morozov's argument mimics the linguistic analysis of the term "technology" that the historian Leo Marx set forth in essays such as "Does Improved Technology Mean Progress?" (1987) and "Technology: The Emergence of a Hazardous Concept" (2010). Marx worried about "treating these inanimate objects—machines—as causal agents" and "invest[ing] the concept of technology with agency." Strangely, Morozov never mentions Marx, even though he has borrowed the Marxian approach and applied it to the Internet.

But Morozov pushes this semantic critique to absurd lengths. His incessant scare-quoting of "the Internet" on virtually every one of the book's 350 pages quickly becomes exhausting. If Pollyanna pundits have brainwashed us into thinking too monolithically about the Internet, Morozov aims to deprogram us by relentlessly pounding home its alleged non-existence. The book threatens to devolve into a jeremiad against language itself. One half expects Bill Clinton to make a guest appearance to question the meaning of the word "is."

But no matter how many ways one seeks to deconstruct the Internet and disassemble it into all its individual components and influences, when those pieces are reassembled it is hard to ignore the significance of the resulting thing before us. One need not drink Marshall McLuhan's Kool-Aid about the medium being the message to nonetheless believe that medium impacts message, while having a profound impact on modern social, cultural, and economic developments.

 This globally interconnected, interactive, always-on, decentralized network of networks is qualitatively different from the telegraph, the telephone, the radio, and television. It combines attributes of each of those previous mediums and exacerbates their impact. And it is innately resistant to control in a way that those previous technologies were not. These realities must now be factored into virtually every technology-related business and policy decision, no matter how much Morozov wants to dismiss them.

Adversarial Design

Morozov's approach shares much in common with earlier media and technology critics, including the French philosopher Jacques Ellul, the German historian Oswald Spengler, the American historian Lewis Mumford, and the America social critic Neil Postman. These writers were concerned about the subjugation of human beings to "technique" or "technics," and they worried that, as Henry David Thoreau quipped in Walden, "men have become the tools of their tools."

A hundred and thirty years after Thoreau, Postman would decry the rise of "technopoly"—"the submission of all forms of cultural life to the sovereignty of technique and technology"—that would destroy "the vital sources of our humanity" and lead to "a culture without a moral foundation" by undermining "certain mental processes and social relations that make human life worth living." In a similar way, Morozov insists that "We must resist the temptation to accept 'the Internet's' gift, which might be little more than a curse in disguise. We must not fixate on what this new arsenal of digital technologies allows us to do without first inquiring what is worth doing."

So what does Morozov consider "worth doing"? This is where things get confusing. After spending the first 300 pages of the book debunking "solutionism" of all varieties, he then reverses course and suggests that some techno-solutions might be worth pursuing if they fit into the sort of adversarial culture he hopes to inspire—a culture that calls into question the worth of new technologies while also disrupting the ease with which we integrate them into our daily routines.

Specifically, Morozov wants to inject "adversarial design" principles into modern technologies to counter the "cult of efficiency" that he believes is somehow sapping our humanity. This means adding "friction" to the process of innovation by encouraging the development of "erratic appliances" that are "technological troublemakers," forcing us through their intentionally inferior design to slow down, contemplate the ramifications, and make hard choices. For instance, a flower-like lamp that constantly dims unless its petals are touched, apparently reminding its owner to conserve energy.

Morozov hopes that this sort of technological sabotage would create "endless antagonism and contestation of social and political norms" to "make people think with their devices" and "turn us into more reflective, caring, and humane creatures." But this is just another form of "solutionism," of using technology to produce desired outcomes. The only difference is that Morozov is in the very small minority of people who would prefer that technology worked less well, in order foster the "endless antagonism" of norms that he desires.

Another bit of Morozovian solutionism was on display in a November 2012 New York Times op-ed in which he decried Silicon Valley's supposed "new prudishness" and its "dour, one-dimensional algorithms, the mathematical constructs that automatically determine the limits of what is culturally acceptable." He even accused Valley engineers of being too "deeply conservative." To fix this apparently pressing problem, Morozov proposed conducting "regular independent audits of the design, development and modifications of computer systems," although he offered zero detail about how such algorithmic meddling would work.

Yet in To Save Everything, Click Here, Morozov ends with the lament that "The problem with engineers is not that they are conservative; it's that they are not conservative enough." So in sum he is revealed as favoring the Goldilocks formula for getting algorithmic engineering just right, without letting us in on the secret of the cooking process.

The absence of details is a recurring feature of Morozov's tech punditry. He never bothers delimiting the boundaries of his adversarial approach or considering the cost, practicality, or legal issues that might be associated with it. Would product liability law need to be reworked to account for intentionally crippled Morozovian devices?

Nor does he adequately defend the benefits of "friction" and "endless antagonism" relative to the benefits we enjoy daily from enhanced efficiency in product design. People will protest vociferously when their devices and services arrive in an intentionally crippled state simply so that we can satisfy Morozov's cranky goal of "making people think with their devices." To the extent that his plot would succeed in getting people to think about their devices, it would likely be along the lines of "How soon can I get my device fixed?"

'Small C' Cyber-Conservatism

Taken as a whole, Morozov is building a body of work that is deeply small-c conservative in character. He blends traditional social skepticism about the promise of emerging technologies with a strict rejection of determinism as applied to tech. He then attaches these values to an insistence that people be required to think and make affirmative decisions about their choices, rather than just letting machines or algorithms make those decisions easier for them. He stands as a guardian over existing institutions and norms, trying to beat back the onrushing technologies that threaten to disrupt them.

In this sense, Morozov's approach is reminiscent of "a certain attitude towards change and innovation" that British philosopher Michael Oakeshott eloquently articulated in his famous 1956 essay "On Being Conservative." "The man of conservative temperament," Oakeshott wrote, "prefers small and limited innovations to large and indefinite" and "favors a slow rather than a rapid pace." He is "cool and critical in respect of change and innovation" and understands that "a known good is not lightly to be surrendered for an unknown better."

Morozov's disposition isn't quite as grim as Oakeshott's ("Changes, then, have to be suffered," Oakeshott lamented), and no one should mistake Morozov for a political conservative in the contemporary sense. But what Morozov shares with Oakeshott is the belief that, as Oakeshott insisted, "not all innovation is, in fact, improvement," and that "rational prudence" is the wise disposition when considering the worth of new technologies, especially those that come wrapped in the promise of achieving utopia.

It remains unclear just how far Morozov would go to defeat "the cult of efficiency" that he says haunts us. Would he join Oakeshott in insisting that "the onus of proof, to show that the proposed change may be expected to be on the whole beneficial, rests with the would-be innovator"—in other words, applying the precautionary principle to technological change?  Morozov's solutionism of "erratic appliances" and "technological troublemakers" would certainly constitute a preemptive, precautionary approach to digital regulation, should anyone attempt to apply them.

But in the end Morozov seems more interested in changing cultural norms than public policy. He aims to be the father of friction, inspiring a new generation of social critics and technology developers to intentionally complicate the network of networks that shall never be called the Internet. "Technology is not the enemy; our enemy is the romantic and revolutionary problem solver who resides within," he proclaims in his final paragraph.

Would the world really be a better place without any "romantic and revolutionary" thinking? Would the benefits of skepticism outweigh the cost of cutting dreamers off at the knees? Morozov seems to think so, but one wonders what the world would look like if we all adopted his Mr. Techno-Grumpy Pants attitude and stopped trying to make the world a better place with technology.

Toward Rational Optimism

Perhaps there is a middle ground here: We can jeer at over-zealous techno-solutionism while still cheering on solution-seeking. There's no reason to stop trying to fix hard problems in the name of clipping some tech evangelists' wings.

This more practical disposition toward technological change is what author Matt Ridley calls "rational optimism." At a macro level, the rational optimist is generally bullish about the future and the prospects for humanity but is not naive about the challenges associated with technological change. At the micro level, the rational optimist seeks practical solutions to intractable problems through constant experimentation and learning through trial and error, but is not wedded to any one process or particular technology to get the job done.

This is the approach seen in the works of Herman Kahn, Julian Simon, F.A. Hayek, Aaron Wildasky, Ithiel de Sola Pool, and Virginia Postrel. These thinkers are optimistic about the role technology played in advancing social and economic progress, but their optimism is rooted in empiricism and rational inquiry, not blind faith in any particular viewpoint or ideology. Rational optimists don't hold an unthinking allegiance to technology as an autonomous force or savior to civilization's woes. Indeed, the blueprint that rational optimists offer is not utopian but anti-utopian: Precisely because difficult problems defy easy solutions, we should look to devise a plurality of strategies to tackle them. New technological innovations might be among those strategies, but not be the only ones we rely on.

Rational optimists would not discourage dreaming and daring, however. If those "romantic and revolutionary problem solvers" want to give it a go, then more power to them. Some of that entrepreneurial activity will yield socially beneficial results. Far more importantly, it would likely produce many failures, and society would then learn from those mistakes and improve future experiments accordingly.

The goal is not to "save everything" with "the folly of technological solutionism." Rather, it is to seek to solve some problems through the application of practical knowledge to social challenges, via incessant experimentation with the new and different approaches to hard problems. Sometimes technology—even Morozov's dreaded "Internet"—can and will play an important role in that process. We shouldn't let his or anybody else's relentless pessimism get in the way of that.

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  1. certain mental processes and social relations that make human life worth living.

    I know it is considered a self-evident truism among Luddite fucks like this asshole that the internet is evil because it’s killing “in-person, real-life interactions” that make up the only “real connectedness”, but that’s incredible bunk that falls apart under any kind of scrutiny at all.

    I would submit to you that “in-person, real-life interactions” actually kind of…suck.

    They’re generally incredibly formulaic, devoid of content, and perfunctory.

    Think of the kind of prosaic, empty conversation you have at, say, a family reunion.

    “Hey, how have you been?”

    “Great, yourself?”

    “Fine, fine. How are the kids?”

    Blah blah blahdy fucking blah. And so forth, for ten minutes, communicating nothing that would not have been covered in two or three Facebook updates, and taking exactly zero steps outside of the ritual formula for such occasions.

    There’s more actual content, more actual give and take, more communication in your average YouTube Comments section (to use a particularly derided example) than in 99% of the conversations that take place in real life worldwide.

    1. I can prove your point with an example from H&R.

      The death of JsubD, who I never met in person, affected me more than plenty of deaths of people I had actually met.

      1. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job Ive had. Last Tuesday I bought a gorgeous Lancia Straton from earning $4331 this – 5 weeks past. I began this 7-months ago and right away started to earn at least $69, per-hr. I use this website,,
        http://goo.gl/4z9pn

    2. Yes, but your the people on your you-tube channel aren’t giving you sex.

      1. Honestly, I can think of several women I fucked who had less impact on my life, in the final analysis, than Joe from Lowell.

        If human life is a thing of the mind.

        And I think it is.

        1. Yep. One of the most wonderful things about the Internet is that it allows people who previously had no or few friends due to their interests or inclinations to find thousands or millions of people just like them.

          How many gay teenagers in less tolerant home or community environments are able to use an online community as a support group?

          You know, some parent bitching because their kid spends all their time playing multiplayer games. “Go see people, go hang out with the kids your age!!!” The stupid ones? The ones who pick on him? Fuck that, he’s got a hundred people on his Warcraft friends list that share a hobby and form a distributed community.

          These are the same people who lament the loss of control that having only three TV channels gave them.

          1. These are the same people who lament the loss of control that having only three TV channels gave them.

            TOO MANY CHOICES – my older brother

          2. I remember one of the first times I went on an internet forum and I’m having a conversation with someone inAbu Dhabi. I’m like the world just got a whole lot smaller. Most of the intelligent conversations I have are on the Internet. I’m a social person and I enjoy in person interactions as well but I agree that most of the time those conversations are pretty shallow and often repetitive.

          3. “some parent bitching because their kid spends all their time playing multiplayer games. “Go see people, go hang out with the kids your age!!!”

            Yeah, and fuck the supposed “social” scene at High School and their shitty get-togethers.

            However, I have two younger brothers who do nothing but play XBox and spend all their disposable money on games/subscriptions. It gets to a point in which its not healthy. At least go outside for a walk or something. I was at the school last month that I’m going to next year. On the patio of almost every dorm room were fishing poles and beach umbrellas. Thats how you should spend most of your time, IMHO.

    3. Hmmm.

      My wife was the sysadmin for an advanced cooking forum that I participated in. That’s how I met her. We would not have met otherwise, since she lived thousands of miles away and traveled in totally different social circles.

      My best friend of the past 20 years was a fellow whom I met on a wine forum run by Prodigy. We had such fun with one another, we arranged to meet up and spend a weekend. This ended up with me choosing a job near where he lived so that we could get together three or four times a week (no homo). We would not have met otherwise, since he lived 400 miles away and traveled in totally different social circles.

      One author whose stuff I’d been reading for 30 years (a European guy) was on a forum I participated in, and seemed to have the same smart and witty personality in near-real-time as he had in his writing. We struck up several conversations, and started a correspondence. When I went over to Europe on business, we had dinner and an amazingly good time. Now, besides the correspondence, we spend a week or two every year at one another’s homes, and he arranged for my scribblings to be published.

      Perhaps my favorite scientific author and I met up in London after having interacted on another internet forum. Likewise, we now write to one another daily, visit several times a year, and have taken several boozy road trips together. He was kind enough to put me in the dedication of his last book.

      1. Did I mention one of my favorite blues/funk guitarists of the ’60s and ’70s? Wikipedia mentions that he’s very reclusive and that his location these days is uncertain. I can tell you that for a week every year, he’s in Santa Barbara, where we share a rented place and do some serious food and wine stuff, thanks to an interaction on a wine and cooking forum and ensuing email correspondence. He also helps me with my chord construction…

        I can’t say enough about how the personal relations in my life has been enriched by the internet. Evgeny is a turd.

    4. I would say that “kinda suck” probably because you lack tangible social skills. Probably because you spend a lot of time online and not in the company of real people.

    5. Cooper. even though Russell`s story is super… on friday I bought themselves a Chevrolet from having made $9334 this past five weeks and over $10k last-month. it’s certainly the most financialy rewarding I have ever had. I actually started eight months/ago and pretty much immediately earned more than $72.. per/hr. I use this web-site,, http://www.wow92.com

  2. I also have to laugh at this clown’s desire to make devices work poorly.

    It’s pretty clear that what he wants to achieve is to force people to have to concentrate on interacting with devices, because he sees concentration itself as valuable, apart from the output of achieving something with the device. If you value concentration in itself, it’s would be better if Google didn’t work well, because then instead of instantly being able to get an answer out of it, you’d have to work at it.

    And that seems almost reasonable, at first glance. Surely we are “more human” when we have to concentrate more?

    Except it’s more bunk. Again.

    It falls into the trap of mistaking a parlor trick imitation of intelligence for the real thing. Since all our devices were poorly engineered in the past (or, at least, progressively less well engineered than they are now), and since information was difficult to retrieve in the past, the person who could quickly discern how to overcome bad engineering and the person who could memorize lots of trivia occupied a sort of privileged social space, where his Clever Hans type abilities looked like intelligence to most people. As devices become better engineered and as a trick memory becomes less important, people like that actually have to create something, see something new, to be perceived as intelligent. And they fucking hate it.

    1. Ha, you nailed it. Rote memorization used to be a monetizable skill; not so much any more with instant information retrieval. And the memorizers hate it.

      1. Yeah I can still wreck pub trivia though. No smartphones allowed there.

        I keep trying to get Jeopardy, but they won’t let me.

        1. Ned Hastings: When traveling at a subsonic speed during the last one hour of hyper sleep, which vector of the Romulan Nebula will suffer the wrath of the impenetrable quickening? And, for extra points, how many wraths to the nearest molton? Be specific. This is a real question.

          Frylock: Aw, hell.

    2. If just anybody can operate fancy machines, then how will smart people distinguish themselves?

    3. ‘Knowing stuff’ is still really important career wise and social wise. People can only retrieve info they know they are ignorant of and if they know where to get it. Most people don’t know what they don’t know.

  3. Although I do not agree with Morozov in everything he says, I think he has a point in this case. The idea the technology determines history is common among liberal “historians,” ignoring the role of culture, of genetics, and of individuals. And when contemplating the idea that technology can create utopia, remember the parable of the scorpion and the frog. Human nature exists, and, in an industrial civilization, it can be highly destructive. Technology solved the problem of hunger, but then we get the problem of obesity. We raised the poor to a level of wealth unimaginable in pre-industrial times, but we find that the poor still act like the poor. We find movements toward statism still running strong, as it is a part of human nature. We see men still beating their wives and women still swooning over violent men. Technology will find a hard time solving these problems.

    1. “Technology will find a hard time solving these problems.”

      So how will it solve these problems, eugenics?

      1. It’s American. THE ANSWER IS ALWAYS EUGENICS.

        This is your brain on American style racism.

    2. Technology will find a hard time solving these problems.

      Most of those problems can be solved with drugs.

    3. Yeah, solving one problem may lead to other problems; so what? Sure, obesity is bad, but I guarantee that starving is worse. Same thing with the “poor”. The “poor” in the industrialized countries have a standard of living, and the longevity, that once only the very wealthiest and powerful could hope to achieve. Same thing with global warming caused by an efficient fuel source (hydrocarbons): I’d rather be able to afford air conditioning on a warm planet than struggle to heat a hovel in an ice age.

  4. The Victorian Internet: The Remarkable Story of the Telegraph and the Nineteenth Century’s On-line Pioneers [Paperback]
    Imagine an almost instantaneous communication system that would allow people and governments all over the world to send and receive messages about politics, war, illness, and family events. The government has tried and failed to control it, and its revolutionary nature is trumpeted loudly by its backers. The Internet? Nope, the humble telegraph fit this bill way back in the 1800s. The parallels between the now-ubiquitous Internet and the telegraph are amazing, offering insight into the ways new technologies can change the very fabric of society within a single generation….

  5. Nowhere does Theirer examine exactly how Morozov would accomplish his sabotage, but it doesn’t take a lot of thought before it’s obvious it won’t be through market forces; who in hell would buy a computer that is designed to be difficult to use?
    Sorry, this guy is a ‘conservative’ in exactly the way progs are conservative; they think the world was just ducky in 1955 and they’re more than willing to use your money and their force to return to those golden days.

    1. more like 1933

    2. Judging from this review his premise seems to reduce to: “technology might change the world from something I think I understand into something I don’t and it therefore must be resisted.”

    3. He’s a neocon aka a righty prog.

    1. See?! See?! The internet didn’t solve that!!

    2. Time to ban assault meteors. Call your Congressional representative and tell them that Wolcott deserves a vote!

      1. “90%! 90%! 90%!”

      2. “Vote Earth. Vote Sirius A. Manson.”

  6. “”Adam Thierer on Evgeny Morozov…””

    why do i feel something was misspelled?

  7. he unsuccessfully labors to convince us that the very concept of “the Internet” holds no inherent meaning and that we have all been suffering from a sort of mass delusion about its existence

    I refute it thus! *launches Good Times virus*

  8. Morozov is seriously trying to put toothpaste back into the tube here (though that might be the sort of ‘crippled’ technology he’d go for). It sounds as if he’s using the pre DotCom bubble burst bagmen who’d be out trying to raise money to built the #2 BBQ sauce portal online b/c in the future everyone would buy BBQ sauce on line and the ‘BBQ.com’ domain was already taken. These types have already been pilloried over and over again for their hyper enthusiasm/brazen scamming of investors. Yet that doesn’t negate the fact that in so many industries the Internet *has* changed the world and simultaneously ‘solved problems’ while disrupting the status quo (qv: the music biz). The fact that a few people were wrong about the application of a new technology doesn’t invalidate its significance. And if the kooky ‘flower petal lamp’ ever did come to market it would be less than an hour before someone hacked it to stay on all the time and the instructions to do so (and to install an Android OS based ROM to operate it) posted online.

    1. …”Yet that doesn’t negate the fact that in so many industries the Internet *has* changed the world”…

      My company would not exist without the net.
      The costs of advertising, print material, market research, etc, without the web means it would never have even started (even presuming it would have qualified for SB gov’t funding; don’t know and don’t care).

    1. I did OK, but (spoiler alert) the presence of a Mars bar shows that this was put together by a Brit. I would’ve done better if they’d included more of the standard American fare, such as Snickers and (need I say it?) Twix.

      1. Yeah, I only missed the Smarties and the Mars bar.

        I was WTF on the Smarties until I looked it up and saw that it’s a completely different candy from what is marketed as Smarties in the US.

      2. pretty sure I have seen Mars Bars here in the U.S of A.

    2. THEY’RE ALL TWIX!

  9. Navajo the chosen one for new ‘Star Wars’ language dubbing

    In the new translation of “Star Wars,” Darth Vader is Luke’s bizhe’e.

    1. Will Disney/LucasFilm just dub “A New Hope” or all three Star Wars movies?

  10. Sounds like a solid plan to me udde.

    http://www.GotzMyAnon.tk

  11. . . .silicon eden . . .

    What a great name for a band!

  12. I don’t see the internet freeing disenfranchised citizens in ANY authoritarian society worth its dictatorial salt. I’m not a Luddite by any means but the reality I tend to side with is one that works to comprehend feasible strategies employed by strangling authority to ceaselessly limit freedom.

  13. See? Without the internet, Marcus and this guy’s cousin’s step mom would have to get real jobs!

  14. Morozov is exhibit A for why academics are really poor at understanding what is going on around them. I’ve worked in engineering for 20+ years and only an idiot couldn’t see how profoundly the internet has changed the way things are done. One example: I can design a part in CAD, send it through the internet to a connected 3D printer and have it printed and sent back to me nearly overnight. The only human intervention is the guy on the other end unloading, cleaning and packing the part for shipping.

    The equivalent task used to mean I had to make a CAD file, go down to the computer department and get a tape or disk made, drive it or mail it to the prototype shop where another CAD jockey reads the file in and took a couple of days to create shop drawings that are printed out and sent to the shop floor where two or three guys spend another 3 or 4 days translating the print to CNC code and mill and machine the part, which then was shipped back to me a couple days after that.

    How can the internet not be a useful technology when it can transform workflows as radically as my example?

    1. The equivalent task used to mean I had to make a CAD file, go down to the computer department and get a tape or disk made, drive it or mail it to the prototype shop where another CAD jockey reads the file in and took a couple of days to create shop drawings that are printed out and sent to the shop floor where two or three guys spend another 3 or 4 days translating the print to CNC code and mill and machine the part, which then was shipped back to me a couple days after that.

      Look at all those high paying jerbs destroyed by technology!!

      /Luddite nitwit

      1. In reply to your Luddite nitwit:

        Whereas the fellow above you sends out his files to other fellows keeping them busy… My small invention partnership has now moved prototyping in-house with the readily available Replicator 2 hooked up to my workstation. We’ve likely impacted a few jobs somewhere with this move.

        It is inevitable that cheap machines will change the economy in ways few could have predicted. Not recognizing this might be its own form of Ludditism. The changes will be largely beneficial to bright and flexibly-minded individuals… the rest will be divided even more so by the brutal reality of standard economics.

  15. You know what I like? This book has a Kindle edition.

  16. Eva. although Michelle`s blog is shocking… on sunday I bought a top of the range McLaren F1 since I been earnin $4227 this – four weeks past and would you believe, ten k this past-munth. this is really the coolest work Ive ever done. I actually started 7-months ago and immediately made myself at least $84 p/h. I work through this website,,
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  17. I met my wife on a dating site, and we aren’t a rare case these days. We’ve also made a lot of friends through Meetup events.

    So, the Internet, being a huge impersonal human-destroyer, allows us to make what is probably one of the most intimate connections that two people can make.

    Yeah, Morozov is a moron.

  18. Fear/distrust of technology is fear of humanity – fear of civilization. Technology is what separates us from other species, it is what makes us human. This is not some New-Age thinking, it is Rational Thinking. Humans are Tool Makers; computers, smartphones, the internet, satellites, etc. – these are the “advanced” tools of the 21st century. Just like the Written Word was the “advanced” tool of ancient times. Morozov’s argument is self-contradictory and absurd. If he’s against technology, why is he using technology (the written word, printing press, money, etc.) to make his point? Technology CAN solve a lot of problems, if those who design and engineer it have a clear vision and intelligence to make it happen. Technology is also probably the only way we can put humanity on a path to sustainable growth and prosperity (as is evident here: http://www.geopolitics.us/?p=1645 )

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