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To Save Everything, Click Here: Technology, Solutionism, and the Urge to Fix Problems that Don't Exist
 
 

To Save Everything, Click Here: Technology, Solutionism, and the Urge to Fix Problems that Don't Exist [Kindle Edition]

Evgeny Morozov

Kindle-Preis: EUR 11,16 Inkl. MwSt. und kostenloser drahtloser Lieferung über Amazon Whispernet

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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

A devastating exposé of cyber-utopianism by the world's most far-seeing Internet guru (John Gray, author of 'Straw Dogs')

Evgeny Morozov is the most challenging - and best-informed - critic of the Techno-Utopianism surrounding the Internet. If you've ever had the niggling feeling, as you spoon down your google, that there's no such thing as a free lunch, Morozov's book will tell you how you might end up paying for it (Brian Eno)

A clear voice of reason and critical thinking in the middle of today's neomania (Nassim Taleb, author of 'The Black Swan')

This hard-hitting book argues people have become enslaved to the machines they use to communicate. It is incisive and beautifully written; whether you agree with Morozov or not, he will make you think hard (Richard Sennett, author of 'Together')

Praise for The Net Delusion: Gleefully iconoclastic ... not just unfailingly readable: it is also a provocative, enlightening and welcome riposte to the cyber-utopian worldview (Economist)

A passionate and heavily researched account of the case against the cyber-utopians ... (Bryan Appleyard New Statesman)

Selected by the New York Times as one of the 100 Notable Books of 2011 (New York Times)

Kurzbeschreibung

To Save Everything, Click Here, the new book by the acclaimed author of The Net Delusion, Evgeny Morozov, is a penetrating look at the shape of society in the digital age, of the direction in which the 21st Century may take us, and of the alternate paths we can still choose



Our society is at a crossroads. Smart technology is transforming our world, making many aspects of our lives more convenient, efficient and - in some cases - fun. Better and cheaper sensors can now be embedded in almost everything, and technologies can log the products we buy and the way we use them. But, argues Evgeny Morozov, technology is having a more profound effect on us: it is changing the way we understand human society.



In the very near future, technological systems will allow us to make large-scale and sophisticated interventions into many more areas of public life. These are the discourses by which we have always defined our civilisation: politics, culture, public debate, morality, humanism. But how will these discourses be affected when we delegate much of the responsibility for them to technology? The temptation of the digital age is to fix everything - from crime to corruption to pollution to obesity - by digitally quantifying, tracking, or gamifiying behaviour. Yet when we change the motivations for our moral, ethical and civic behaviour, do we also change the very nature of that behaviour? Technology, Morozov proposes, can be a force for improvement - but only if we abandon the idea that it is necessarily revolutionary and instead genuinely interrogate why and how we are using it.



From urging us to drop outdated ideas of the internet to showing how to design more humane and democratic technological solutions, To Save Everything, Click Here is about why we should always question the way we use technology.



'A devastating expos� of cyber-utopianism by the world's most far-seeing Internet guru' John Gray, author of Straw Dogs



'Evgeny Morozov is the most challenging - and best-informed - critic of the Techno-Utopianism surrounding the Internet. If you've ever had the niggling feeling, as you spoon down your google, that there's no such thing as a free lunch, Morozov's book will tell you how you might end up paying for it' Brian Eno



'A clear voice of reason and critical thinking in the middle of today's neomania' Nassim Taleb, author of The Black Swan



'This hard-hitting book argues people have become enslaved to the machines they use to communicate. It is incisive and beautifully written; whether you agree with Morozov or not, he will make you think hard' Richard Sennett, author of Together



Praise for The Net Delusion:



'Gleefully iconoclastic . . . not just unfailingly readable: it is also a provocative, enlightening and welcome riposte to the cyberutopian worldview' Economist



'A passionate and heavily researched account of the case against the cyberutopians . . . only by becoming "cyberrealists" can we hope to make humane and effective policy' Bryan Appleyard, New Statesman



'Piercing . . . convincing . . . timely' Financial Times



Evgeny Morozov is the author of The Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom (which was the winner of the 2012 Goldsmith Book Prize) and a contributing editor for The New Republic. Previously, he was a visiting scholar at Stanford University, a Scwhartz fellow at the New America Foundation, a Yahoo fellow at the Institute for the Study of Diplomacy at Georgetown, and a fellow at the Open Society Foundations. His monthly column on technology comes out in Slate, Corriere della Sera, El Pais, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and several other newspapers. He's also written for the New York Times, The Economist, the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times and the London Review of Books.


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Amazon.com: 3.8 von 5 Sternen  33 Rezensionen
56 von 60 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Morozov pulls no punches 9. März 2013
Von Will Jackson - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
Wow, this one will surely prove controversial. Morozov is like Mike Tyson of Internet punditry: from the very first pages of "To Save Everything...", he goes straight for the jugular, accusing a coterie of fellow Internet intellectuals for treating what he calls "the Internet" - he uses it in square quotes throughout the book - as a fixed entity, with its own logic and inspirit. What he wants instead is a more dynamic, constructivist account that would recognize the sheer diversity of logics that "the Internet" represents. This is Morozov's critique of Internet-centrism.

There's also a second, parallel critique that he advances in the book: that of solutionism - which he defines as the tendency to define problems as problems based solely on the fact that we have nice and quick technological solutions for solving them. The book then traces how these two intellectual pathologies - solutionism and Internet-centrism - interact in the context of recent efforts to fix politics, promote transparency, track and gamify everything, make crime impossible through situational crime prevention and predictive policing, and so forth.

It's not an easy book to read, not least because Morozov draws on what must be hundreds of thinkers to make his point. (And, wow, his range is impressive: I'm yet to read a book that references both Paul Ricoeur and Jeff Jarvis!) While it's a challenging read, it proves very rewarding, especially as the book progresses. The sections on design are to kill for.

There's a bit of "everyone but me is wrong" feel to this book but it's hardly a good reason to ignore it - what if Morozov is, indeed, right that everyone is wrong? Whatever one makes of him and his style, this book is so far the most significant challenge to the mindset of Silicon Valley and its apologists in the tech media and the lecture circuit (Morozov helpfully namechecks most of them in the book!)
55 von 61 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Finally, a decent critique of Internet as ideology 9. März 2013
Von Peter Socolow - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
Snarky? Check. Contrarian? Check. Demanding? Check. That's enough checks for me: most books don't go that far. So, to be blunt: whatever its flaws, this book deserves to be widely read and argued about. Is it perfect? Hell no. Morozov doesn't know when to stop and he is occasionally too full of himself to be enjoyable; at times, this book reads like "Imagine That: Some People Are Wrong on the Internet About the Internet." (Morozov, of course, would say that this last sentence is pure nonsense, for "the Internet" doesn't exist. Okay, Professor!) He's lucky his relatives are no Internet theorists - or he would destroy them as well (that's a Pavlik Morozov joke right there!)

The book somehow manages to stay extremely funny (Morozov has a great eye for the ridiculous and the surreal; his epigrams are hilarious - especially the Franny Armstrong quote comparing soccer and the Internet) and also very serious (too serious at times; there's way too much theory in it - it could easily lose some Dewey and Giddens, not to mention of that other enfant terrible, Bruno Latour).

There's a certain schizophrenic flavor to this text: after all, here's an Internet pundit writing a biting manifesto against Internet punditry. Morozov's critique is both of substance that underpins much Internet thinking - it overlooks deeply political and moral questions and only focuses on efficiency and innovation - and of its style - it presents the Internet as a coherent and revolutionary force, a theoretical move that we have taken for granted for far too long.

There is also a very weird structure to the book: a short first chapter on "solutionism" (which looks as if it were inserted at the last minute), followed by a very long treatise on "Internet centrism," with a chapter dedicated to various mainifestations of both in action. What this book doesn't have is the typical Gladwellian "Let me tell you a story about a counterintuitive thing that happened to this interesting man/company/academic..." that has come to define the genre of Internet punditry (look no further than Clay Shirky for a perfect example of such narration; luckily, Shirky is one figure who gets the worst drubbing in this book).

This is not to say that Morozov shies away from anecdotes and examples - they are plenty - but the bulk of the book is dedicated to what can only be called "ideology critique," with lots of quotations and close readings of Internet thinkers. That someone can pull it off in a trade book is an interesting development all by itself.

Does Morozov repeat himself? Yes. Can the book be shorter? Easily. Is it way too angry? Perhaps. But none of this spoils the final product: it is highly idiosyncratic but it is also the best analysis of all the pitfalls that have stalled our thinking about the "digital."

To sum up: Morozov is like Zizek, minus all the ticks and wrinkled t-shirts. Perhaps, it does take a very cynical Eastern European to point out just how facile, cheap and ridiculous most of our "thinking" is.
42 von 51 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Journalist cum Jester 1. Mai 2013
Von Dionysos - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Morozov's newest entry in tech criticism bursts with what is now his trademark polemical critique of "tech-evangelists" whereby Morozov finds most other tech thought to be the stuff of children. At best, Morozov, humorous and sharply sardonic, points out Silicon Valley Kumbaya myths that tech geeks willfully repress and laymen ignore. In the text, we attack the many arguments of Rational Idealists who have decided that the Internet is the saving grace and potential force for Good.

Yet, in these times of the impending Google Glass, many of those previously ambivalent are prepared to define the limit of tech interference in common life. Morozov states that the "lines are drawn" and the "battle will take a new shape," yet the book gives hardly any indication how or what resistance may look like. Why? He thirsts instead for e-debates with low hanging fruit, bravely debunking the endless cascade of pedantic details that journalists hope will inspire your "click". For one, he argues as if pro-tech practitioners and commentators of all levels of influence and stature can be seen as a coherent mass of Silicon Valley Worshipers or "Internet-Centrists." Clarity is obscured by references to products and people that you probably will never have heard of had Morozov not decided they fall under the category of "imminent threat to liberal democracies." For example, much ink was spilled concerning an "innovator" who hoped measuring the variables of his bowel movements would bring further enlightenment.

His true literary talent lies in sarcastically turning the techspeak of Valley wonks and trendsetters against them, in a classic reductio ad absurdum. My personal favorite sections in this regard are "Gutenberg in the Kingdom of Geekistan" and "The Imperialism of Numbers," although most titles admittedly are not so melodious (For example, "The Ryanairation of Privacy"). The content itself is expansive, yet we become inundated by Morozov's inclination towards gratuitous and tenuous links to historical figures or theoretical allies, to the abandonment of useful dialectic. In a protest against numerical and "Big Data" overload, Morozov responds by instead drowning the reader in an endless string of non sequiturs.

Despite these criticisms, Morozov has made the stories, ideas, and philosophies of influential techies accessible, a worthy task. However, he cannot hide his pathological desire to levy repetitive and often paranoid criticisms, which surely give him libidinal delight. Furthermore, he does not generally employ his own well-trodden thoughts, but searches the archives for potentially useful "soundbites" of various other intellectuals. I starred many useful writings in my notations, but rarely did anything come from Morozov himself. The character that emerges from the text is not one of an earnest leader prepared to drive the debate, but instead a maligned shut-in who follows his enemies religiously on Twitter searching for foul-ups of any magnitude. Only forcefully can he lock them away in his safe so that he can prepare a verbal attack (this is actually true). A popular definition of a pseudo intellectual is, "someone who acts pretentiously and wishes to win an argument or impress, rather than trying to find the truth - a focus on surface and rhetoric over content." A more pithy description of Morozov could not be written. In the end, the investment in time and money into the book is not warranted for most when much of the content is already online.
8 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A Thomas Jefferson against solutionism 27. Juni 2013
Von Isaac - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
This is one of the most profound books I have ever read. For once, someone is brave enough to stand up to the flowery technologists and thrust their "out of this world" back in to orbit. As someone who respects true computer science and taught themselevs C++ , I am worried to see such corrupt people tear at the field. This book is a must for everybody ranging from the solutionists to the Luddite.
50 von 64 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen To Save Yourself, Read Him 27. Februar 2013
Von Aaron Eisen - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
"[I]n truly free societies, there are few restrictions on what freedoms can be pursued. As such, no algorithm or set of laws can ever be designed to resolve the ensuing conflicts and clashes" (136-7).

The flippant and reductive tone of Amazon reviews convinces me, even now, especially now - having finished Evgeny Morozov's helpful, and instructive new book - that I betray myself, and betray his intellectual efforts in this limited, certainly non-neutral, space. But the book is too important for its merit to be left to the typical self-congratulation of those who replaced our book critics.

In the age of memes and "big ideas," it's tempting to whittle "To Save Everything: Click Here" into a paint-by-numbers outline of its arguments and key points, thus suggesting the rest of the work is Morozov dutifully filling in space when we can already see what picture he's trying to draw. But Morozov, though the victim of an underwritten Wiki, pens dense (in the good sense) volumes that require every page.

As it's colloquially called, the "big data" movement is rich with statistics but poor on disciplined rhetoric. Morozov is equipped with both. Addressing prominent technophiles and technophobes - from Nicholas Carr, to Clay Shirky, to Jeff Jarvis, one-at-a-time to the kissing booth (blow them away) - Morozov finds many contemporary thinkers rhetorically similar, if intellectually diverse. That is, most people who talk of the Internet, talk of "the Internet," an invented but useful catch-all concept to describe what the hell is this thing we're all looking at. Morozov calls such figures "Internet-centrists," and one of the book's core projects is to demystify the fascination regarding (protecting) technology that has prevented more serious inquiry since the age of Marshall McLuhan. Hence, Morozov is the kind of scholar who deserves more of our zealotry: a skeptic.

There are issues to take with this. First, Morozov himself benefits from the divine glow we ascribe to our screens (like the `third party' candidate who accuses both sides of hypocrisy, but is still, nevertheless, a politician) and has to make us believe in the hype of "the Internet" if only for himself to deflate it. Certainly a book titled "To Save Everything: Click Here," even if ironically, will be hard-pressed to argue against the bombast of digital rhetoric. Moreover, and this will annoy many people, Morozov's goal is primarily negative. As The New Scientist writes, in its review: "the book, essentially, is a series of rebuttals of prominent technologists. There is little in the way of practical alternatives."

But this prejudice ("oh yeah? If you think it's so bad, you try and do better") and contemporary hatred of the critic should not alter what is our fundamental, or my fundamental, gratitude for this book. As a college student, who, like a digital Midas, has seen everything I've touched in life turn into a computer - friends, education, activities - Morozov reveals what soon might be missing. Because the "Internet-centrists" are very often "solutionists," he says, who use technology to create perfunctory "fixes" in various fields. Not only are such fixes unhelpful, misguided, and perhaps unnecessary; but they are done in bad faith, with engineers applying schemata - data sensors, social networking, infantile reward systems - to commodify and replace storied institutions with the justification of solely efficiency.

Even more than "ideas" it presents, this intelligent, enjoyable, pro-humanist work - with wide-reading, knowledge of history, and head-clearing analysis - makes an argument for the kind of scholarship still relevant: even if standing alone.

Finally, I thought, our age has its thinker.
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