Against the Machine: Being Human in the Age of the Electronic Mob
Against the Machine is a fascinating look at how the Internet is reshaping the way we think about ourselves and the world. Siegel explores how the internet affects culture and social life, particularly the psychological, emotional and social cost of high-tech solitude. Arguing that the internet's widespread anonymity eliminates boundaries and encourages otherwise polite people to be downright abusive, Siegel discusses the half-fantasy, half-realism of online personae. By experiencing virtual selves rather than other individuals, we run the risk of being reduced to avatars that other internet users manipulate for their own ends. Insightful and written with convincing evidence to support the author's polemic, this book is a welcome addition to the debate on the personal ramifications of living in a wired world.