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I think Keen takes himself a bit too seriously. He makes some good points, but always in the negative, against the so-called "amateurs" who can post whatever they want on the Internet without having credentials. Yes, we know they do that; but we still have the discernment to reject what is not authentic and look for more authoritative sources.
Unlike a good reporter, which seems to be one of Keen's models, Keen does not give both sides of the story. He keeps harping only on how amateur postings have ruined culture. Rarely, if ever, does he point to anything good about this new style, with his Web 2.0 has permitted. Thus, he is not really reporting, but rather ranting against something he fears. In this, he violates his own precepts.
Also, it's not at all clear how identity theft, Internet pornography, and Internet gambling have to do with the cult of the amateur. Sure, these are bad things that need to be addressed, but the amateur is not responsible for these things. If anything, these are "pros" in their own fields, hackers, gambling impresarios, and pornography vendors.
Keen did not convince me that the cult of the amateur is a bad thing. He scared me with the ID theft chapter, but that's nothing new.
I think he's just picking a fight, and a I suppose, as he indicates, he's got it. He said some of his email correspondents have called him a "Luddite." I think he's just still learning. He notes at the end that this is his first book. Let's see what he comes up with next.
 

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Andrew Keen has quite a pessimistic view when it comes to social media. The Cult of the Amateur is definitely exaggerated, but it definitely provides us with an interesting point of view on social media.
If you would like to see social media from a different point of view then I would advice to read this book - however, some skepticism isn't a luxury.
 

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Keen makes a point and sticks by it: the Internet and it's social networking sites are causing our culture to become weaker and weaker. All forms of media besides the Internet are suffering, because people are reading blogs, and taking their opinions as facts.
This is what got me: Keen throughout the book speculates that blogs are causing people to believe an artificial truth wil no solid back up, which is exactly whan Keen is doing. He explains to us that YouTube and MySpace are ignorant and narcissistic, yet in the introduction it becomes apparent by his style of writing that he is indeed ignorant and a tad narcissistic. He fails to give proof that the Internet is causing us as a nation to have a lower IQ, assumes that MySpace instantly makes you ignorant, believes that any content posted on YouTube is to promote and advertise one's qualities, and thinks that blogs are written to be taken as fact, when we're expected to take his beliefs as fact.
Interesting point of view, but a rather hypocritical way of presenting it.
 

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