Beyond the Blogosphere

Information and Its Children

by Aaron Barlow and Robert Leston


The gates to a flood of amateur-produced media have been opened. The Internet has become a world—and we have become a species—that shares everything. When information is shared, fact and fiction blend, and we find ourselves beyond the blogosphere: an uncharted place where it's easy to get lost among the mesmerizing, convoluted networks of information.

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Cover image for Beyond the Blogosphere

December 2011


Pages 269
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Current Events and Issues/New Media and Journalism

This book looks at questions and answers pertaining to the organization, usage, and ownership of information in the Internet age—and the impact of shifting attitudes towards information ownership on creative endeavors.

In the competing traditions of Marshall McLuhan and Langdon Winner, authors Aaron Barlow and Robert Leston take readers on a revealing tour of the Internet after the explosion of the blogosphere and social media. In the world Beyond the Blogosphere, information has surpassed its limits, the distinction between public and private selves has collapsed, information is more untrustworthy than it ever was before, and technology has exhibited a growth and a desire that may soon exceed human control.

As Langdon Winner pointed out long ago, “tools have politics.” In an eye-opening journey that navigates the nuances of the cultural impact the internet is having on daily life, Barlow and Leston examine the culture of participation in order to urge others to reconsider the view that the Internet is merely a platform or a set of tools that humans use to suit their own desires. Provocative and engaging, Beyond the Blogosphere stands as a challenge on how to rethink the Internet so that it doesn’t out-think us.


  • Provides a nuanced understanding of the implications of the digital revolution for information utilization
  • Attempts to make sense of the changes in the production and organization of information resulting from Internet culture
  • Takes the discussion to the next level in terms of the meaning and trajectory of this form of communication and its impact
  • Discusses the meaning of information ownership vis-a-vis artists who are proponents of free culture, including Paul D. Miller (a.k.a. DJ Spooky that Subliminal Kid), William Burroughs, video artist Bill Viola, Negativland, Radiohead, Nine Inch Nails, and others
Author Info

Aaron Barlow, associate professor of English at New York City College of Technology, Brooklyn, NY, is the author of Praeger's The DVD Revolution: Movies, Culture, and Technology; The Rise of the Blogosphere; Blogging America: The New Public Sphere; and Quentin Tarantino: Life at the Extremes.

Robert Leston, assistant professor of English at New York City College of Technology, Brooklyn, NY, specializes in contemporary American rhetoric and its relations to technology, psychoanalysis, and animal studies. Actively pushing the boundaries of academic publishing by working in the mediums of image, text, video, and sound, he has authored a number of peer-reviewed articles and web-texts in both print and electronic journals.



"This book is a clarion call for people to influence technology before it expresses a desire running 'counter to the well-being of the human.' The authors see the Internet as having the capability to help people 'embark on a course of unrealized human collective potential.' . . . Recommended."—Choice

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