- Hardcover: 256 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin's Press (May 22, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0312624980
- ISBN-13: 978-0312624989
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 8.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #962,874 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Digital Vertigo: How Today's Online Social Revolution Is Dividing, Diminishing, and Disorienting Us Hardcover – May 22, 2012
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“Unlike most commentators, Andrew Keen observes the internet as if from a distance. Digital Vertigo may be one of the few books on the subject that, twenty years from now, will be seen to have got it right. Neither blinkered advocate nor hardened cynic, he identifies the good and the bad with a rare human and historical perspective. ” ―Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO, WPP
“Andrew Keen has found the off switch for Silicon Valley's reality distortion field. With a cold eye and a cutting wit, he reveals the grandiose claims of our new digital plutocrats to be little more than self-serving cant. Digital Vertigo provides a timely and welcome reminder that having substance is more important than being transparent.” ―Nicholas Carr, author of The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains
“Andrew Keen is that rarest of authors: one has taken the time to understand the benefits of technological innovation before warning us of its risks. In Digital Vertigo Keen finds himself in a dizzying world where it is not just possible to share every detail of our professional and private lives, but actually expected. While a growing number of his friends -- including those in the upper echelons of Silicon Valley society -- preach the gospel of total transparency and cyber-oversharing, he refuses to blindly click the "accept" button. Instead he takes us on a guided tour of the history of privacy, solitude and the technology of socialization -- before encouraging us to take a long, hard look at our lives before we blindly allow others to do the same. A vital and timely book that's terrifying, fascinating, persuasive and reassuring all at the same time. And one that will make even the biggest Facebook-o-phile or Linked-in-a-holic think twice before adding another contact to their network.” ―Paul Carr, author of Bringing Nothing to the Party and The Upgrade
“A bracing read. From Hitchcock to Mark Zuckerberg and the politics of privacy, a savvy observer of contemporary digital culture reframes current debates in a way that clarifies and enlightens.” ―Sherry Turkle, author of Alone Together
“Web 3.0 has catapulted society to new technological heights, yet afflicted us individually with a profound sense of vertigo as we stand naked for all to see. It is almost too late to ask whether we would live our digital lives differently if we had known that privacy would become the scarcest commodity on the Internet. But in this timely and important book, Andrew Keen once again thinks one step ahead of social media pioneers, posing questions they will need to answer or risk facing a digital uprising. Equal parts philosophical and informative, Digital Vertigo brings us back to 19th century debates that have an eerie relevance to today's technological dilemmas, while also laying out the latest corporate strategies being deployed to decipher and commercialize your most intimate thoughts. Better than any other multi-media expert, Keen challenges the false promise of the virtue of sharing.” ―Parag Khanna, Director, Hybrid Reality Institute, and author of How to Run the World: Charting a Course to the Next Renaissance
“Despite the unfortunate lesson throughout the 20th Century of the dangerous allure of utopian thinking, the Digital Age has inspired a whole new generation of fabulously successful entrepreneurs who preach the revolutionary future of Web 2.0, Web 3.0, . . . That's why Andrew Keen's work is so important. He's a voice of informed caution, a Silicon Valley insider warning against false prophets and a future that may destroy as much as it creates. In Digital Vertigo, he examines the fantastical claims for and astounding growth of social media, countering the vision of excited gurus with sober, reality-based queries and judgments. The book is a tonic for individuals who are tired of the hype and coercion and display of online contact.” ―Mark Bauerlein, author of The Dumbest Generation
“Digital Vertigo provides an articulate, measured, contrarian voice against a sea of hype about social media. As an avowed technology optimist, I'm grateful for Keen who makes me stop and think before committing myself fully to the social revolution.” ―Larry Downes, author of the e-commerce bestseller Unleashing the Killer App: Digital Strategies for Market Dominance
About the Author
ANDREW KEEN, author of The Cult of the Amateur, is a Silicon Valley entrepreneur whose writings on culture, media, and technology have appeared in The Weekly Standard, Fast Company, The San Francisco Chronicle, Listener, and Jazziz. He lives in Santa Rosa, California.
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Top Customer Reviews
Still, in the final part of the book, I got somewhat overwhelmed by his presenting all apps that are "social" and therefore collecting
our patterns and private information. It would be nicer to hear his frank opinion to support the book cover synopsis. On why this is the new "1984". But as the say goes: You cannot bit the hand that feeds you.... But it is a very interesting essay, and I recommend it.
With Digital Vertigo, Andrew Keen takes us on an engaging, thought provoking, and eye-opening journey, which starts at the London's University College where the corpse of Jeremy Bentham - an utilitarian philosopher of the 19th century - is displayed in a glass case, and ends at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam with the author reflecting in front of the painting "Woman in Blue" realized by Vermeer in the 17th century.
In between, Mr. Keen writes a cautionary message to the people of the 21st century: will the future be social - as the social networks' makers and millions of enthusiastic users claim it should be - or will it allow us to regain some privacy and mystery- as the author believes we should fight for?
I was already sold to Andrew Keen's cause when I purchased the book: I forgot I opened a Facebook page, only days after I created it.
What I found the most interesting in this book is how the author manages to keep us engaged for almost 200 pages on the topic of privacy versus exhibitionism. Thanks to a modern and distinctive voice, he pulls us seamlessly through loads of names, facts and data as if he had written a novel instead of a nonfiction book.
I found the comparisons to Vertigo, Hitchcock's cult movie, particularly relevant, and clever that the book makes a full circle, beginning with an extreme case of exhibitionism and ending with a quiet visit at the museum.
The only negative note regarding this fascinating book: the author seems to have an almost personal issue with Mark Zuckerberg. It is true that Facebook is the most important social network and has already faced privacy issues. Yet other online activity makes us as visible as being on Facebook.
Ironically as I was ready to post this review, Facebook is again making the headlines. A scandal related to private messages publicly posted on Facebook's walls and involving political figures has just exploded in my native France. Privacy in France is as sacred as food and wine.
Andrew Keen's cautionary message has never been timelier.