Two essays we mentioned in class today:

“Fixated by Screens, but Seemingly Nothing Else” by Perri Klass

“Even in Real Life, There Were Screens Between Us” by Caitlin Dewey (winner of the Modern Love College Essay contest)


It’s a phenomenon worth witnessing, in its original form on Craigslist, or in altered, art form: in these lovely drawings by Sophie Blackall, or in these fake Missed Connections by various authors, posted with the real responses they garnered when actually posted on Craigslist.

How does today’s Internet affect breaking news?

… in her essays “Living Singles” and “Magic and Loss,” among her last “Medium” columns for The New York Times Magazine. Is this another case of Never-Better gone Better-Never?

Here’s the New Yorker interview with Mark Zuckerberg that Zadie Smith refers to in “Generation Why.”

And here he is on The Today Show in 2009 (he comes in around minute 2:00).


“Remember, just because someone types something in a computer, that doesn’t mean it’s the truth.”

— 1998

Reposting Adam Gopnik’s New Yorker article, “The Information: How the Internet Gets Inside Us.”

“The Never-Betters believe that we’re on the brink of a new utopia, where information will be free and democratic, news will be made from the bottom up, love will reign, and cookies will bake themselves. The Better-Nevers think that we would have been better off if the whole thing had never happened, that the world that is coming to an end is superior to the one that is taking its place, and that, at a minimum, books and magazines create private space for minds in ways that twenty-second bursts of information don’t. The Ever-Wasers insist that at any moment in modernity something like this is going on, and that a new way of organizing data and connecting users is always thrilling to some and chilling to others—that something like this is going on is exactly what makes it a modern moment. One’s hopes rest with the Never-Betters; one’s head with the Ever-Wasers; and one’s heart? Well, twenty or so books in, one’s heart tends to move toward the Better-Nevers, and then bounce back toward someplace that looks more like home.”