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"The medium is the message" is one of my favourite cliches. It always punctuates the same recurring insight.

Socrates' had famous thoughts on the importance of medium choices in his day: reading, writing and libraries or people in gardens trading questions and answers and using memory.

The choice of medium isn't neutral. Imagine 5 people in a garden talking about their feelings, political views, or whatever. Alternatively, imagine them writing essays, making youtube videos or discussing on a HN thread or creating a wiki... same topic, same people.

The content would be totally different. The thoughts that people shared (or even had) would be different. The perspectives, emphasis and everything else about the content would be different.

The internet is like a queen-medium. It spawns an endless brood of different mediums, digital and otherwise. Twitter, Tinder, Meetup, Youtube... and thousands of smaller ones. Not one of them is a good "replacement" for another type of medium, but they do replace them.

I agree with the jist of this article, I think.

Where internet "mediums" replace important personal ones, we're at risk of replacing "home-cooking" with "junk food," and the results will be the same.




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