Media Virus!: Hidden Agendas in Popular Culture

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Ballantine Books, 1994 - Social Science - 338 pages
4 Reviews
Finally, there is a way to understand the bizarre relationship we Americans have with our information technology: the media is alive. Welcome to the "datasphere", also known as the late twentieth century. Here, good news, bad news, any news, travels in the blink of an eye. And not just news, but information: ideas, images, and icons; fads, fashions, and fantasies; truths, lies, and propaganda. While cable television, fiber-optic telecommunications, satellite dishes, computer modems, camcorders, fax machines, and videocassettes form the crisscrossed arteries of a vast "information superhighway", we must ask ourselves: What sort of messages are these brave new medias carrying into our culture? Bold, daring, and provocative, Media Virus! examines the intricate ways in which popular media both manipulates and is manipulated by those who know how to tap into its power. And it considers - with something between amusement and mild alarm - the ever-widening ripple effect of the successful "media virus". As culture critic for our wild times, Douglas Rushkoff shows that where there's a wavelength, there's a way to "infect" those on it - from the subtly, but intentionally, subversive signals broadcast by shows like "The Simpsons", to the odd serendipity of a classic New York-style sex 'n' family values scandal (a la Woody and Mia) exploited by the Republicans during their convention. What does it all mean? Unless you've been living in a cave that isn't cable-ready, you're already infected with the media virus. But don't worry, it won't make you sick. It will make you think....

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Review: Media Virus!: Hidden Agendas in Popular Culture

User Review  - Kim - Goodreads

You can't hold its dated-ness against it. That said, the second half of the book did not hold up to the promise of the first half - he seems to lose his focus on the meme. Read full review

Review: Media Virus!: Hidden Agendas in Popular Culture

User Review  - Captaine Hoo-hoo - Goodreads

Good preliminary guide to the realization that a lot of our thoughts aren't thoughts and aren't put there by our own doing... Read full review

Contents

The Nature of Infection
3
The Datasphere
19
TV Forums
45
Copyright

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About the author (1994)

Douglas Rushkoff was born on February 18, 1961. After graduating from Princeton University he received an MFA in Directing from California Institute of the Arts. He has written numerous magazine columns on topics including cyberculture and has been aired on CBS Sunday Morning and NPR's All Things Considered and published in The New York Times and Time magazine. Rushkoff has taught at the MaybeLogic Academy, NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program, and the Esalen Institute, and he teaches media studies at the New School University. Rushkoff lectures around the world about media, art, society, and change at conferences and universities. He consults to museums, governments, synagogues, churches, universities, and companies on new media arts and ethics. Rushkoff won the first Neil Postman award for Career Achievement in Public Intellectual Activity. He is on the Boards of the Media Ecology Association, The Center for Cognitive Liberty and Ethics, Technorealism, The National Association for Media Literacy Education, MeetUp.com, and Hyperwords. His bestselling books include graphic novels, Cyberia, Media Virus, Playing the Future, Nothing Sacred: The Truth about Judaism, Get Back in the Box: Innovation from the Inside Out, Coercion, and Life Inc.

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