[Air-l] hmm,thinking about internet stories

jeremy hunsinger jhuns at vt.edu
Fri Mar 22 12:10:59 PST 2002

This could be done as a wiki too, perhaps as part of the wikipedia 
project.  but for me, i am less actually interested in the facts of the 
history, I am much more interested in the stories, true or not, that we 
tell about that history.  I think that when I give my 15 minute internet 
history, I tell certain short parts for certain reasons to certain 
people and not to others and i give certain spins to various groups. 
 This is the creation of the fictions, supported by some construct of 
the events, that really intrigue me.  It is the fictions of the canon 
that tell the story about the disciplines, not the canons themself.  

Some stories i tell are:
"the invention of packet switching"
    this one is a standard short history story that i usually tell on 
the fly
"the history of the undernet or what it means to talk to someone in 
taiwan in real time along with 20 other people"
    this centers around my experiences during the early years of the 
undernet irc network, and my experience being myself in a wide         
variety of roles, channel manager, participant, being banned, etc. etc.
"finding myself on the web; egosurfing and search engines"
    how many of you tell the story of when you first found information 
about you that you did not create on a page?
 there are other stories, this is just a short list, there are probably 
100 or so that i can tell for various reasons.

i tell them because i find they point to some aspect or another about 
the current discussion that I'm in, not so much about the truth of 
history, but about understanding situations, and events.  

It is sort of like the difference between listening to Utah Philips 
versus reading a book about the labor movement, the sense of the event 
is different in the spoken story, whether it happened like that or not.

>    This tool has proven to be valuable for its intended use, and the
>empirical studies of the results form an important part of my
>dissertation.  There is a demo version that is allows use of every
>part of the system except the actual posting of commentary.  

jeremy hunsinger		http://www.cddc.vt.edu/jeremy
cddc/political science		http://www.cddc.vt.edu
526 major williams hall 0130	http://www.dromocracy.com
virginia tech			-under construction
blacksburg, va 24061
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