I publish, therefore I am. Publishing as a duty

The tools that we believe make our lives easier simultaneously enslave us.
The Internet is not just an opportunity, a gift of progress. It is an obligation that contemporaneity imposes upon us. When we go to the depth of the country, for some reason, and without fail, we tell our friends that we will not have any Internet access. We seem to be apologising for this. If John Doe disappears for a while from a forum or from Facebook, his friends begin to ask, “Where is John? What’s wrong with him?” If nobody is looking for him, poor John, right? Nobody is interested in him; he’s out of society.
If we want to buy a package holiday from a particular tour agency and we can’t find any information about that agency on the Internet, we won’t use them. In modern business, a company cannot function if it has no Internet presence. An Internet presence is no longer an additional business opportunity – it’s a matter of existence. If you’re not on the Internet, you’re not in business. We’ll soon say the same about human beings. No links – no human.
I publish, therefore I am. Publishing is turning from an opportunity into an obligation. And the further we go, the truer this becomes. This is only logical, because publishing has become a means of socialisation in this environment.
Among two billion or so Internet users it is unlikely that there is anyone who uses the web exclusively to receive content. Users are inevitably drawn into deeper, bigger forms of engagement. This brings to mind Marshall McLuhan’s idea: the medium shapes the user.  If the Internet gives people the possibility to become actively involved, the individual gets drawn into this possibility and begins to behave accordingly. This remarkable quality of the Internet is beginning to be felt: what is possible becomes obligatory.
…On the 27th of September 2013 US President Barack Obama and his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani spoke by phone. What they discussed is not so important here – it is the very fact that they had a conversation that matters. It was the first contact between the leaders of these two countries in over thirty years. This fact was so important that President Obama called a special press conference to publicly announce his conversation with his Iranian colleague. But “Rouhani scooped the president’s announcement of the phone call, tweeting news of it just minutes before Mister Obama spoke to reporters.”
This would have been a perfect bit of news if only it had somehow featured adorable kittens.
(So be it)

Andrey Miroshnichenko

Extracted from: Human as media. The emancipation of authorship – by Andrey Miroshnichenko
Available now on Amazon


Categories: Emancipation of Authorship, Future of journalism, Human as media book, Media ecology

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2 replies


  1. The Duty of Being LinkedIn | Exploring Social (Dis)Connection

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