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The internet, like time, is a trip

The internet, like time, is a trip


omg the clock just went from 1:59 to 3:00!!!

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Here's what I genuinely love about the internet: it elevates the trivial to the phenomenal with brute force. Sometimes there are mixed results. When a bunch of amateur internet sleuths caught the wrong Boston bomber, the internet was Bad. When a bunch of people ganged up to deliver pizza to a two-year-old cancer patient, the internet was Good. But mostly it seems like the social internet is one big real-time repository for mundane existence.

The internet is incredibly intimate

Some people say the internet has eroded the depth of our involvement with other people, and with the world. I sure feel like that sometimes. But that's not true, at least not entirely: some of our experiences are just packaged differently now. We might not know the handful of people surrounding us in our villages as intimately as our ancestors did, but we can see the intimate thoughts of 3,000 people anytime we want by pulling a little glowing rectangle out of our pockets.

Being able to see hundreds, or thousands, or tens of thousands of people unwittingly having the same thoughts at the same time in plain view is, ironically, something that makes the internet really intimate. Maybe the most intimate thing that people have ever created. Before the internet, a lot of these thoughts would have never left someone's brain and entered into communal existence. The ability to see them now — to see so many of them at once — is a new kind of human awareness. And it's rad.

Today, lots of people watched as their clocks leaped forward an hour thanks to daylight savings time: a time zone system invented in 1883. Here's how people are reacting to it 132 years later:

We're apart, but we're all together.