Free Time Has Become a Commodity to Be ExploitedWhat we're seeing in social media is the rise of a small handful of imperial platforms [Google+, Facebook, Twitter] ready to use the productivity of the users for profit.
The social relations and associations captured in the various networks and platforms and media are a productive force of their own, a commons.
The development of techno-capitalism shows us how 'the exploitation of the worker' has become the exploitation of our 'free' time. Capitalism captures the work we do to maintain our friendships as a kind of productivity.
Networking technology has made it possible to archive the product of this social work and find more capitalist applications for it. Social relations are produced socially; their shape is determined to a degree by social needs, or in other words, the general intellect.
With social networks increasingly becoming the medium of friendship, the purpose of friendship has likewise been affected.
It now takes the form of all this concrete data-processing labor online, which goes by the benign enough name of “sharing.”
The productivity of social networking seems like the cutting-edge manifestation of a tendency where more free time, for ultimately get reappropriated by capital.
The individual has changed as a result of a large amount of free time. He indulges in cultural consumption and a sort of ‘power to enjoy’.
Most of us will recognize that the Post-Fordist laboring process actually takes advantage in its way of this very transformation albeit depriving it of all emancipatory qualities.
What is learned, carried out and consumed in the time outside of labor is then utilized in the production of commodities, becomes a part of the use value of labor power and is computed as profitable resource.
Even the greater ‘power to enjoy’ is always on the verge of being turned into laboring task.
That's why it is worth complaining about social networks being private for-profit entities. The general intellect loses its autonomy, its capacity to function as a public sphere. Instead, it’s just another digital assembly-line product. Source
Banksy via Romany WG Collection
What Kind of Revolution Do You Want?
What does punk have to do with Empire?
What does singularity have to do with identity?
What does the logic of rock ‘n’ roll aesthetics
have to do with a politics of representation?
What does the concept of the multitude have to do with neoliberalism?
Illustration: Ben Jelf
What Do Android Geeks Dream Of?
Android fans that want to really get their geek on and develop their own accessories and physical devices to work with their smartphone might want to check this out.
It’s from a company called SparkFun and the product is dubbed Electric Sheep. It’s not really a sheep, but rather a board that hooks to your Android device via USB, and lets you design things.
Similarly to the Arduino Mega ADK board, the Electric Sheep board will connect to your Android device using the Open Accessory protocol and that gives you access to the phone’s functions.
You can use the board to tie the phone to just about anything electronic or mechanical you can dream up, then control it from your phone.
The board has an ATMEGA2560-16AU microcontroller on it and a pre-loaded Mega 2560 bootloader. It has an onboard USB host header for connecting your Android gadgets, and can control devices without having to write any Java code – when used in concert with HandBag for Android.
The Electric Sheep board is available now for $79.95 (USD) over at SparkFun. Source
In lowering its outlook from "stable" to "negative" on the top AAA rating for US Treasury bonds, Standard & Poor's spoke Monday for the entire financial mafia that is headquartered on Wall Street.
The ratings firm declared in a press release that failure to reach an agreement in the coming months to reduce the federal deficit by at least $4 trillion over the next decade "could lead us to lower the rating."
This amounts to a threat to crash the US and global economy and undermine the status of the dollar as the world reserve currency. The move is part of an internationally orchestrated drive by the major banks and speculators to push through devastating attacks on the living standards of the American working class.
They are applying to the United States the extortionate methods used previously to stoke up speculative attacks on the sovereign debt of a number of European countries, including Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Spain.
S&P and its major ratings rivals Moody's and Fitch have issued strategically timed credit warnings and downgrades to create a crisis atmosphere, which governments have then utilized to override popular opposition and impose mass layoffs and wage cuts and shred social programs.
John Chambers, chairman of the sovereign ratings committee at S&P, virtually admitted as much, according to a report in Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal. The Journal wrote: “If the US reaches a British-style resolution, S&P will restore the US outlook to stable, Mr. Chambers said.”
In May of 2009, S&P lowered Britain’s credit outlook. It reversed the action 17 months later after the newly elected Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government announced a program of draconian cuts that will shatter the country’s social safety net.
What is S&P’s standing to be issuing such ultimatums? The Senate report on the Wall Street crash describes the corrupt process by which S&P routinely slapped AAA ratings on worthless securities marketed by the banks as follows:
“Credit rating agencies were paid by Wall Street firms that sought their ratings and profited from the financial products being rated… The ratings agencies weakened their standards as each competed to provide the most favorable rating to win business and greater market share. The result was a race to the bottom.”
Senator Carl Levin, the chairman of the subcommittee, described what the investigation uncovered as “a financial snake pit rife with greed, conflicts of interest and wrongdoing.”
By rights, the top S&P executives who presided over this fraud and pocketed multi-million-dollar salaries in the process should be sitting in prison.
Instead, still at their posts and having suffered no consequences, they are using the disaster of their own making to gut bedrock social programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security upon which tens of millions of people depend.