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Disneyfication

I just put something together in my walnut-sized brain:

The web could be dying.

I don't know why this didn't strike me sooner, but while watching hockey on ESPN the other day, I noticed a fuckload of ads for the new portal site "GO.com". The damn thing isn't even open, so don't bother going there yet, and even when it IS open you shouldn.t bother going there.

Why?

Because it's owned by fucking Disney, that's why. The corporate hydra that just didn't seem fulfilled untill they could controll a little news (abc) and make sports a wee bit more wholesome (espn).

The rolling Juggernaut of marketing and media power is now putting up its very own bleached-out, whitebred, kid-friendly portal. Why? Because they heard there are a lot of people online (true, yet false) and Yahoo! stock went through the roof for some reason known only to the morons on wall street.

Seeing an oppotrunity to make their trillion dollar a year profits expand by one thousandth of a percent they went forth and created yet another web portal. A site you're supposed to use as your starting page when you connect to the internet with your web browser (more on THAT concept in a minute).

Of course, this won't be the end of it.

Fact:

There are a wee bit over 76 million people on the internet in the United states (roughly 30% of the population) and only 149 milion online in the entire planet (a measley 2.4%).

This number, in the states at least, is almost 3 times as big as it was a mere 3 years ago, when corporate sites usually consisted of one page with a toll free number you could call to get a packet of marketing garbage sent to you via snail mail. Then all of a sudden the media got a hold of it and after making up a few new buzzwords and showing the general populace how easy it was to get your hands on porn, the internet became a status symbol.

"BE A HAVE! GET ON THE INFORMATION SUPERHIGHWAY!"

This, of course, prompted all the rich snots who now drive SUVs to jump online solely so they could say "I'm not home much, here's my AOL email address." The floodgates opened wide up for those who had no idea other that "they bought the most expensive one in the place" to start roaming around online like a lost man who hasn't the slightest inclination to learn how to get where he's going but is sure as hell going to bitch the entire time about how badly everyone else drives.

When you get that many people with disposable income floating around, corporate america notices. When you get that many people with disposable income around and the media can make a lot of buzzwords with it, corporate america geta a hard on fit to rip through their unknowledgeable pants.

...and thus started the death of the web.

The "average american", to put if bluntly, is an uneducated overcoddled knee-jerk reacting simp with the patience of a child and the attention span of a gnat. This is where the wisdom of the old men and their money come in:

"Heeeeyyyy... getting online is HARD, you don't want to have to worry yourselves with that nonsense, let us take care of it. We'll make it as easy as starting your car!"

"What? Can't figure out the dofference between a search engine and a web index? Well, don't you worry your little head about that, buster. We do all the thinking for you! Don't waste your time figuring out hot to use a silly boolean operator!

We'll find your sites for you.

You can trust us, look at everything we've done for you before..."

Yeah. Thanks a whole fucking lot. Now I have to compete for bandwidth with some unfulfilled housewife who's spending all her time online chatting with her cyber-lover while her husband is away on a business trip using the laptop the company gave him to play solitare on during long plane flights or in his hotel room to search for porn meeting the criteria "big dig hairy"

When they've spent their now twisted libido's its off to the local online version of the Mega-Mall, linked through corporate partnerships to the latest "Web Portal" whith Sports links brought to you courtsey of Coca-Cola! Have A CLICK AND A SMILE! Maw and Paw Jones can safely surf the web through corporate-guided channels, never wandering off the beaten path where they may run into the nefarious hackers or god forbid - the dreaded independent thought.

Thanks to go.com now even junior can mindlessly wander cyberspace (by the way, the term was invented by William Gibson, not Dan Rather) as easily at 5 as they popped The Little Mermaid or 1001 Dalmatians into the VCR at 2 so they could watch it for the umpteenth time instead of playing with their parents - possibly even using a little imagination in the process.

Thank you Disney for making the next great new babysitter. Thank you for giving us something that the kids can not only be use to keep themselves out of their parents care, but also bursh up on learning important "computer skills" like typing and double clicking on templates so they can make their own homepages from pre-cut graphics. Skills they will soon need when their unexercised little minds have been run through highschool and they get prestiege jobs doing data-entry from 8-5 (with an hour lunch even though its unpaid...) so they can play softball and drink beer in the evenings and afford the next generation of "well, my parents wanted grandkids, and I guess I owe them sompin'" children.

Fuck you, Disney. Fuck you very much.

The only good thing about these web-portals and the corporate weed sprawling all over the web?

The little snots like me that will spend their whole time online findng "underground" sites like filedumps for real hackers, thinkers like Melty, or even kooks like myself; and their parents won't have the wherewithall to find out, even though the box is sitting right there in front of them.

They will be the revolution. Let's give 'em some ammo.

Slap out.

21 Feb 98

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