Just last year, TIME Magazine named You as their person of the year. Yes, you.
Who are these people? Seriously, who actually sits down after a long day at work and says, I’m not going to watch Lost tonight. I’m going to turn on my computer and make a movie starring my pet iguana? I’m going to mash up 50 Cent’s vocals with Queen’s instrumentals? I’m going to blog about my state of mind or the state of the nation or the steak-frites at the new bistro down the street? Who has that time and that energy and that passion?
The answer is, you do. And for seizing the reins of the global media, for founding and framing the new digital democracy, for working for nothing and beating the pros at their own game, TIME’s Person of the Year for 2006 is you.
I was skeptical. Sure, you can occasionally sift through the online dross and discover gold. But Sturgeon’s Law hasn’t been repealed. 90% of everything is crud, and that percentage might be higher on the Internet.
Then I began seeing evidence that user-generated content and aggregated effort could work wonders. Joshua Micah Marshall set the readers of Talking Points Memo to searching the Justice Department’s 3,000 pages of information on the potentially political dismissal of U.S. attorneys. People figured out the lonelygirl15 hoax. The lolcat phenomenon took off.
And now I have proof positive that You, by which I mean all of us schlubs on the Internet, are the future of media and democracy. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you High School: A Big Waste of Time, by Bambi, as seen on Associated Content.
The article starts out promisingly by undermining any point it might make:
The following article is based on my own high school experience and may or may not be what you experienced or how your high school may have been set up.
It takes off from there. The article discusses how “[m]any teachers seem to be just that, teachers, not teachers.” It explains how school is all about things you don’t need for real life, like Algebra 2. And finally:
In addition, I’ve been out of school for not even 6 months now. I can’t think of a single thing that I remember.