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From Deleuze to LOLCats: the Story of the BuzzFeed Guy
December 10, 2013 12:20 AM   Subscribe

"It is difficult to isolate a particular ideology from the image-repertoire of late capitalism. What is noticeable is not the content of the images but the efficiency and rapidity with which they are circulated and consumed."

Jonah Peretti wrote a paper titled "Capitalism and Schizophrenia: Contemporary Visual Culture and the Acceleration of Identity Formation/Dissolution" in which he analyzes, using the language of continental philosophy, the exact social situation and schizophrenic style which he would later exploit and dominate with a viral media empire including Buzzfeed and The Huffington Post.
posted by Alterity (10 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
Just here to say that Jonah is smart and thoughtful. He’s also responsible for the 2001 Nike sweatshop shoe kerfuffle, making him just one of two people I know who have (ab)used Nike’s custom shoe services for good.
posted by migurski at 1:03 AM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Or, is Peretti a subversie genius who is using Buzzfeed to destroy our mode of production. Even the New York article begs the question: does this Buzzfeed ad model create sales? Peretti’s article leaves open the possibility that Buzzfeed is one giant resistance.

I'm quite sure the motivation is entirely $$ with a side order of laughing on the way to collect it.
posted by panaceanot at 2:48 AM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Previous example of Buzzfeed resistance on MeFi
posted by Bwithh at 2:58 AM on December 10, 2013


I do not trust those cats. I expect that they are agents provocateur of the Capitalists, although I know, deep down, they are only wage workers. The are the time and the message of the time, as it were.
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:30 AM on December 10, 2013


Buzzfeed may not in fact be the resistance, but anyone can make lists on it, and at least one user is using the tools of Buzzfeed for good.
13 Benedict Cumberbach GIFs that are all the same.
The follow-up, 18 Identical Jennifer Lawrence GIFs...
One more: 9 Facts That Will Make ’90s Kids Feel SUPER Old
posted by gauche at 6:28 AM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Those listicles are great, and should maybe get an FPP...
posted by Going To Maine at 6:44 AM on December 10, 2013


I heartily recomend this list and the other work of Buzzfeed jokster/surrealist Spacedog Escargot.
posted by Jazz.bot at 7:11 AM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ever since The Listiclock I've wondered at whether Buzzfeed is really some sort of self-aware or ironic and elaborate ruse set to expose our relationship with online content and advertising. The material in this thread does deepen those suspicions.
posted by onwords at 8:23 AM on December 10, 2013


I do not trust those cats. I expect that they are agents provocateur of the Capitalists, although I know, deep down, they are only wage workers. The are the time and the message of the time, as it were.

Lenin Cat and Chairman Meow disapprove of your attempts to slander the purrletariat.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:35 AM on December 10, 2013


I am not surprised that someone very knowledgeable about post-structuralist critiques of capitalism might go on to use that knowledge to become a better capitalist. It is far more surprising that this does not occur more frequently. Leftist academics like Deleuze or Butler have put more time and effort into understanding how capitalism actually functions than most of the authors one would find in a business major's reading list.
posted by adecusatis at 8:05 PM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


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