I want to drown in the dialogue of our time
August 16, 2010 6:21 AM Subscribe
Where do the über-smart people collaborate and hold dialogue online?
Back in the day (circa 1996) I seem to remember a lot of deep philosophical and critical dialogue and debate happening on the Internet. Maybe this is pure fantasy, and maybe my memory is deceiving me. It seems the depth of discussion is much less than it used to be. It seems I discover a lot less unique thought, innovative positions today, and a lot more group think and attention-grabbing mediocrity.
Case in point: this morning I peruse Slashdot and am shocked at the general superficiality of the conversations. There are a few gems in the comments, but overall it's a surface-level conversation. Again, maybe I am deceiving myself but I seem to remember the early Slashdot being a community for very deep discussion. Is this a general retreat of the intellectuals? Slashdot has always been technology-focused, but there were other types of conversations going on in the mid to late 90s as well: on the WELL, Salon.com, Usenet, even Yahoo.
Where did all of these people go? Do they just blog on their own sites now? Or, are there still communities out there that are advancing thought through dialogue and dialectic? Is there a social community that exists today of people way smarter than most of us, unafraid to delve deep and wildly into topics? Maybe people just have a lot less time now to pontificate?