Question: Human nature… human nature seeks facts that support your point of view. That speaks against truth.
Dave: Let’s take it as read that it doesn’t change human nature. But what if it allows an older human nature to come out? We used to sing songs around campfires and didn’t worry about being perfect. Why worry about something awful happening until it happens? I get more flamed than anyone; if I can stay optimistic, so can anyone.
Chris: What needs to happen about globalization? What about the rest of the world? What about Eastern Europe?
Adam: What about Europe? This conference has been very US centric. What about world issues? Did you know in Brussels they’re building a single European government with a single currency?
Question: What if our interconnected network comes under attack in such a way that it all falls over? Or what if it becomes subject to something like the rise of Hitler via evil memes? Jim: Yeah, I’m worried about it. But all I can do is write positive memes into it and keep experimenting. We’re in early times.
Kevin Marks: The Net is a mirror—you see things that you look for in it. You can see dark things or good things. —On the Net you see power distributions. I plotted out lists of popularity. On the Web it goes all the way down to one incoming link. In other media it suddenly tapers off because of the barrier to entry. You can get enormous returns.
Britt Blaser: This is utopia, by our grandparents’ standards; the only reason we think it’s so hard is because our dreams are so high that it sucks in comparison. But we had this happen once before, in the explosion of the printing press fueled by coffee. Individual essays, widely disseminated. Dave is Samuel Jonson.
Dan Gillmor: This is like the emergence of MIDI in music, which allowed music to be made accessible.
Question: It’s not the tool, it’s whatever we’re doing here that’s different. We need to figure out what it is that we’re really doing here and protect that.
Doc: What’s happening here is that the demand side of journalism has been enabled to supply. The same thing has happened with education. My sense is that weblogs have exploded the masses. I don’t see masses when I blog.
Amy Wohl: I gave speeches and had no way to find out what my listeners wanted to hear until I started blogging. And the same thing is happening with people all over the world.
The optimism panel: There is a soul and heartbeat in this medium, and that in itself is a promise of transformation.