Californian Ideology
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Jean-Philippe Halgand

Une Pensée de Pericles
a comment from France

As I probably will never have the opportunity to buy David Hudson's Rewired, I was very pleased to read your critical review of it.

In France, it now is quite easy to find Wired amongst other international magazines in bookstores. And if there's a hype about it in a few tech & arty Parisian circles, it is not that important. I even wonder if people ever read it. I heard about Rewired for some time now but never checked the site, feeling it was Americans talking to other Americans. Private clubs of some sort. Maybe that is why I enjoy so much reading the posts on Nettime where the 'debate' isn't focused on neo-liberal tech hipsters and 'antediluvian' Luddites. As if things were black and white this way...

There's in France some kind of techno scepticism which is not a fear of new technics ( not new technologies, please): do I really need this? What am I to do with this ? And what you say about the French Minitel is true. Unfortunately even French prime minister Lionel Jospin said the Minitel set back the development of the Net in France. Which is of course completely wrong: development for who? Since I created a virtual studio Pericles devoted to 'web-specific projects' two years ago, I've been exchanging ideas with many artists from other countries. I'm really happy whith this yet what appears in the end is that if the Net brings the illusion of erasing borders, it also says 'we don't live in the same worlds'. Sending signs to other people faster than before has little to do with communication.

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