My cat’s name is Orwell, so it’s needless to say that I Â buy into the concept that 1984 is our reality right now, and not just in some imagined dystopian future-scape. Here’s yet more compelling evidence, not that we needed it…
Why 2024 Will Be Like Nineteen Eighty-Four (from Slate)
How Amazon’s remote deletion of e-books from the Kindle paves the way for book-banning’s digital future.
By Farhad Manjoo
Let’s give Amazon the benefit of the doubtâ€”its explanation for why it deleted some books from customers’ Kindles actually sounds halfway defensible. Last week a few Kindle owners awoke to discover that the company had reached into their devices and remotely removed copies of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and Animal Farm. Amazon explained that the books had been mistakenly published, and it gave customers a full refund. It turns out that Orwell wasn’t the first author to get flushed down the Kindle’s memory hole. In June, fans of Ayn Rand suffered the same fateâ€”Amazon removed Atlas Shrugged, The Fountainhead, and The Virtue of Selfishness, with an explanation that it had “recently discovered a problem” with the titles. And some customers have complained of the same experience with Harry Potter books. Amazon says the Kindle versions of all these books were illegal. Someone uploaded bootlegged copies using the Kindle Store’s self-publishing system, and Amazon was only trying to look after publishers’ intellectual property. The Orwell incident was too rich with irony to escape criticism, however…
Click here to read the complete article.
…and here’s a Book We Want to Read -
“Beyond Life Inc: Talking with Douglas Rushkoff
by Peggy Nelson
In his new book, Life Inc., media ecologist and author Douglas Rushkoff tells the story of how the corporation has made us over into its own image, how we have altered our reality to serve its needs, and how we can take it back. In this conversation, Douglas illuminates the Dark Ages, reveals why there’s a God on our money, and explains what we’re really buying into when we buy that mortgage. We have the code to open-source everything, he says. Time to go to work!”
Click here for more on this from Reality Sandwich.