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My chapter was basically about a bunch of different scenarios where people’s personal search engine history was leaked so that anyone could see what people had been searching.  It talks about how in 2006 AOL leaked the search histories of 658,000 people.  It talks about how easy it is for identity thieves to break into databases and steal people’s identities offline.  With more places like hospitals and credit card companies keeping their records online, this risk has become even higher.  Search engines like Google, AOL, and yahoo have no responsibility to get rid of data.  They are allowed to keep records of what we search, and they do this using cookies which enable them to keep records of what we do online.  You can disable these cookies, but a lot of sites including Yahoo won’t allow you to use certain services if you do so.  The chapter ends by talking about the repercussions of posting many things online.  People have not been hired for a job or accepted into college because of what they post.  Student athlete’s have been punished for posting negative things about their college coach on social media sites.  It talks about the idea of a world with complete digital surveillance and how it seems cool, but is actually kind of scary.  

 Keen, A. (2007). The cult of the amateur: How today’s internet is killing our culture. (pp. 164-183). New York: Doubleday Broadway Publishing Group. 


Chapter 6 is called “moral disorder”.  Keen begins the chapter by discussing the issue of illegally downloading music.  He talks about how when this became possible many people doing it “didn’t realize” that it was illegal.  They thought that it was okay and didn’t question it.  It has become so common place that even the most law abiding citizen can do it without thinking twice.  This illegal downloading problem now goes beyond a few songs.  People steal letters, pictures, videos, research projects and many other things that are on the internet.  More and more students use information found on the internet to cheat their way through school.  In 2005, 70% of college students admitted to cheating and 77% didn’t think that plagiarism was a problem.  

Keen mentions Lawrence Lessig’s ideas about internet sharing being a social benefit, and how he wants to replace read-only culture with a write-only culture.  He says that Lessig does not recognize that whatever is on the internet was created by someone with their own creativity and talent.  He argues that stealing other’s work is not just illegal, but immoral, shoplifters don’t steal in front of shop owners.  

Keen also talks about the culture of online gambling.  He talks about how easy it is to rack up thousands of dollars in debt in just days.  It is like an online Las Vegas where you can bet 24/7.  In 2005 1.2 million people under 22 were gambling online regularly.  People become so addicted that they spend all of their time on these sites.  There is so much easy access to internet on college campuses that students can gamble in class.  While online gambling is illegal in the United States, not a single online site was indicted until 2006.  Keen also mentions how addicted people become to online dating websites.  Another is online multi-player games where users can creates characters and engage in any kind of real life activity online including creating families and buying homes.  

Keen concludes that we are entering a very dangerously addicting internet culture.  That children are becoming more exposed to real world violence and less able to communicate.  The internet allows us to be deviant and destructive without seeing the effect it has.  

 Keen, A. (2007). The cult of the amateur: How today’s internet is killing our culture. (pp. 141-163). New York: Doubleday Broadway Publishing Group. 

For today, I had to find two sources that discuss the Limits to Growth computer model of economic and population growth with finite resources.  The first source that I found is a youtube video that explains things from the book “The Limits to Growth” from 1972.  The book was created in order to look at the trends of growth.  They were trying to understand long term physical demands on the planet.  In the 70’s when they were doing the research they predicted that anywhere between 2012 and 2030 is when the planet would start to see limits.  The video illustrates that the population is going up while our resources are consistently going down.  It was one of the first times that the future really started coming into question and it really surprised people.  

The Limits to Growth- Is the Prediction of 1972 Going to Happen? YouTube. YouTube, 13 May 2010. Web. 07 Mar. 2013.]

The second source I found was a video on the Club of Rome which was all about the book Limits to Growth.  It gave a video summary of the entire project and each chapter of the book.  It talked about growing physical impacts on a finite planet.  The conclusions they made was an analysis of futures.  It said that the limits to growth would be reach within 100 years of the 1970s.  It is possible to alter the growth trends.  The sooner we try and change the outcome, the greater chances we have.  

“40 Years “LIMITS TO GROWTH”” Club of Rome. Club of Rome, n.d. Web. 07 Mar. 2013.


This chapter is basically an extension of the previous chapter.  It begins by talking about books, and how U.S. publishers used to be able to freely copy the works of British authors without paying anything.  He argues that the internet now with the ability to infinitely copy the words of anyone will overthrow copyright laws.  It is suggested that in the future authors can sell access to themselves or for personalizations instead of paying the author for his actual work.

The chapter also talks about the movie industry and how piracy is becoming a very large problem there.  In 2006 the movie industry lost 6.1 billion dollars to piracy, a number that I am sure is much, much higher today.  In 2005 box office revenues in move theaters had dropped to their lowest levels since 1997.  2007 was the first year that movie sales would decline in the United States.  More and more movies are becoming available online the day that they are released, so people don’t need to go spend the money to go to a theater.  

The television industry is suffering as well, with less and less TV dramas and more online access and behind the scenes things online.  Another industry losing revenue is the radio.  Teenagers have historically been the most devoted radio listeners and now fewer and fewer numbers of teenagers are listening to the radio because they all have their music on their ipods and computers.  

Newspapers and magazines are also greatly suffering from all of the advertising and free information that is on the internet.  Many newspapers and magazines from all over the country are having to cut hundreds of employees and shrink the physical size of their product.  Advertisers are switching to online media because they feel they will have a larger audience.  The biggest question is where we will get all our our news if the real journalists who work for printed physical magazines and newspapers are out of jobs and the news only exists online.  Mass media is turning completely viral and leaving the physical and the money situation just isn’t going to be the same, the money won’t be there anymore.  

Keen, A. (2007). The cult of the amateur: How today’s internet is killing our culture. (pp. 114-140). New York: Doubleday Broadway Publishing Group.

The second chapter in this book really just went into further detail about what Keen talked about in chapter one.  The title of chapter 2 was called “The Noble Amateur”.  He begin the chapter by discussing what an amateur really is.  He talks about how it is defined as a person who has an interest or hobby that does not make money from doing things in their field of interest. Keen proceeds to talk about how “amateurism” is something that people are excited about and celebrate. People are quick to praise and look to Wikipedia for their information than they are to do the same for The Oxford Dictionary or Encyclopedia Britannica. He then goes on to talk about why Wikipedia is not as great of a sign as it seems. The biggest problem is that with Wikipedia the information is not alkways right, and there aren’t enough people who can filter through all of the apges fast enough to make sure that no one is receiving incorrect information. He mentions a case from 2007 where a wikipedia editor who had edited thousands or articles who’s profile said he was a professor with four different degress was actually a 24 year old high school graduate. Another story that Keen cites is that of Dr. William Connolley who worked for Cambridge and was considered en expert on global warming. He ran across some very incorrect information on Wikipedia’s page on global warming and started correcting the information. Wikipedia ended up limiting him to one edit per day because he was changing too much information. His real point in this section was that unfortunately, you can’t fight against what is free.
Because so much of the information we read is incorrect it’s going to force more and more of us to become amateur cirtics and editors to try and sift through all of the information and figure out what is correct and what is not. Keen says that journalism is the same as things like Wikipedia and that blogs are taking over journalists. He says the main difference between the two is that journalists report on real news and bloggers do more review-type things. Journalists can go to jail for what they write, but no one pays attention to what all the bloggers are writing. Blogs are mostly very opinionated and slanted one way or the other where only certain sections of newspaper are allowed to be opinionated. At the end of the chapter, Keen talks about how there are people who want to do away with print books entirely and put them all on the internet. He says that these people think that books can be reduced to single pages, paragraphs, or words and be put back together and mixed with other text from other books and be put into a new creation. Kind of like musical remixes. He also talked about how some companies are creating commericals with amateur people to make them seem more real. He concludes by reiterating his point about how amateurs have a very negagtive effect on the reliability of all of the information we read.

Keen, A. (2007). The cult of the amateur: How today’s internet is killing our culture. (pp. 35-65). New York: Doubleday Broadway Publishing Group.

I found this journal in one of the library’s databases.  While it is a little different I think it fits loosely with my topic.  In my book it talks about how technology is hurting the professional world.  This article talks about how people are increasingly turning to the internet for medical advice and information.  It says that most people still generally go to their health providers and pamphlets first, but that people do use the internet.  It said that those who used it most were people with long term diseases.  Mental Health topics are some of the most searched topics on the internet.  It talks about how health professionals need to have more of a role in helping people understand what they find online because the information could be misleading or inaccurate.

Pohjanoksa-Mäntylä, M., Bell, J. J., Helakorpi, S., Närhi, U., Pelkonen, A., & Airaksinen, M. (2011). Is the Internet replacing health professionals? A population survey on sources of medicines information among people with mental disorders.Social Psychiatry & Psychiatric Epidemiology46(5), 373-379. doi:10.1007/s00127-010-0201-7


This blog I found is titled “Does Technology Makes Us Smart Or Stupid?”  The blog begins by saying that technology either turns us into optimists or skeptics.  Optimists thinking that the internet will make us smarter, and that it has helped us with almost all aspects of life, inclduing living longer.  The skeptics think that it will make us stupid.  They point to the studies that show that we are communicating less and less in person and more and more behind screens.  They also point out that cases of ADHD in children are rising because of the way they are communicating.  He concludes by saying that he thinks technology is neither good nor bad.  While we lose some things when we move on with technology we also gain many things.  We had to lose things from the past to get to this point where we are now as well.  He says that it is up to us and completely in our power whether we turn the internet into something that is good, or something that is bad.

Danaylov, N. (2012). [Web log message]. Retrieved from

The online article that I found is called “Five Ways the Internet is Destroying Society”.  In this article, Crampton talks about how the internet is changing things in society.  He begins by talking about  how people are in such a rush now because they have everything right at their fingertips.  People don’t wait to sit down and watch an entire TV show, or wait for the highest quality product to come, they are just as happy to watch the clip, or read the summary instead of waiting for the entire finished, full product to come out.  His second point was that real news, important news is becoming over shadowed by gossip, rumors and funny videos.  He basically said that it was like America’s Funniest Home Videos taking over The World News every night.  People pay more attention to things like AFV than The World News.  His third point was that we are able to customize alerts via e mail or on our electronic devices to give us the news that we want.  By doing this, we ignore so much of the important news that is out there and only listen to what we want to hear.  We become ignorant.  His fourth point was that the internet was ending “authorship”.  People are downloading things for almost free, and it’s easy for things to be copied which ruins the originals by the author.  People don’t care about paying for the original as long as they have some kind of copy.  The fifth and final point was that people today are using the new media and internet to criticize and respond to older media that was created before the internet boom.  While he says that this isn’t terrible, we are in a way killing the old media with new media.

Crampton, T. (2010, May 20). 5 ways the internet is destroying society. Retrieved from

In the first chapter, Andrew Keen discusses his original experience with the internet in the 1990’s – how he checked out of the “internet gold rush” just as quickly as he became on board with it.  When the internet became a hit he created one of the original online music websites called  It was his hope that this site could bring music to many people everywhere.  After spending two days camping with two hundred other leaders in the internet boom he came to realize that this internet sensation was becoming more about the audience and their opinions rather than a place for professionals to publish their work and truthful information.  He found it to be a place where everyone was focused on themselves and not on listening to what others had to share.  The information found and works published by professionals are being undermined by “amateurs” who can now blog, review, and upload anything they want in a split second.  Anyone can upload a video to youtube, post a song or write a movie review.  There is no credibility behind it, it is all their own opinion, their own truth rather than what is actually true.  Bloggers can write about whatever they want, and while most of it is opinion, we as readers and followers often take what they have written as true.  This causes the truth to be altered and many people to be misinformed.  

Beyond this, Keen talks about how we don’t really ever know who is behind the silly youtube video or song, who wrote the blog, or the movie/book review, or the wikipedia page.  When so many people have access to the internet and the ability to post whatever they want whenever they want, we lost control of knowing what information we see is true and where it is coming from.  Since all of this information (credible or not) is right at our fingertips with the click of a button it is very easy for anyone to steal anyone else’s information.  With two or three clicks you can copy paste someone else’s information and claim it as your own.  How are we supposed to know who owns information when it may have been copied multiple times from many different sources and authors without documentation?  Since the line between the professionals and the average joe has become very blurred, the line between what is fact and what is fiction has also become blurred.  Keen concludes the chapter by discussing how these amateur posts and uploads are a financial burden to the professional world.  Since we are able to download music and movies fairly easily without paying for them, and put ads online instead of paying to put them in a newspaper, producers, publishers, and artists are all losing money.  Also, the free online sites that are taking these over, are not making much money to replace the money that the original non-online companies were making before.  


Keen, A. (2007). The cult of the amateur: How today’s internet is killing our culture. (pp. 1-34). New York: Doubleday Broadway Publishing Group.