on 2/5/02 11:04 AM, Josephine Bosma at [log in to unmask] wrote:

> ... I sometimes call net art
> the merging of media art and more traditional art. Finally the two merge
> almost by default, through a media space which is used by 'everyone'.
> Yet the connection which also happens there with other cultures (design,
> activism, popular culture, folklore even) makes that in the end we see
> something that is more then just media art and more traditional art
> combined. Should we not adress such a big cultural phenomenon (as it
> also affects art) as art critics? We miss an opportunity to analyse the
> situation well and act to it if we keep the two seperate.

You describe what Lawrence Lessig calls "the commons", where resources can
be rivalrous (my use of it competes with your use of it) or nonrivalrous (my
use of it does not inhibit yours). The Internet is such a commons. Most of
the time it seems to be a nonrivalrous "space" that each can use as much of
as they wish to (or can afford). The tragedy of the commons is that when it
becomes a rivalrous space we act in our own best interests and deny the
resource to others and, eventually may even destroy the resourse altogether.

Not to dwell on this point too much but I have always viewed the
actions as an attempt not to self-promote but as a warning (404) that with
this contact between different cultures there will be attempts to curtail
the freedom we take for granted on the Internet if we don't think through
our response better. This is Lessig's big point in his book.

Obviously, post 9/11, this is a big cultural phenomenon that goes beyond
media/traditional art. Do we trust our handlers/curators to know what to do?