Re: [-empyre-] old discussion, and pieces of history

On Thu, 8 Jan 2004, wrote:

> What I am beginning to sense from some participating in this on-line
> discussion is a subtle posture of covert defensiveness in regard to the
> construction ( if necessary at all ) of this term:  New Media.

I think the term is being explicitly attacked and defended, so perhaps I'm
missing the subtleties.

The term isn't necessary for everyone: if the computer is just a tool,
platform, or means of delivery to you ("or is it simply just another
mechanism?") rather than a new way of thinking, presenting simulated
worlds, and connecting and computing upon media in radically different
ways, you may be more interested in the fruits of the new media field than
in participating directly in the investigations, explorations, and
discussions that are taking place.

But the work being done in new media today certainly does seek to remedy
the bifurcation of art and technology that you mention, drawing on many
different traditions but focusing on what they mean in light of the

> There are some core power dynamics being played out here ... on this
> list as well as elsewhere in this nascent field.

Hopefully some of that play of power dynamics is a genuine attempt to
understand what the interesting aspects of new media work are (whether we
like the term or not). People are doing different sorts of work and have
different interests, so of course there will be different answers, with
some people thinking that transitions in media, or the avant-garde, or
particular directions in critical theory are more important than the new
capabilities afforded by the computer.

-Nick Montfort
 My new book, Twisty Little Passages:

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