Cutting words to create consumers
Lee Siegel laments the rise of anonymous thugs and the sharp sword of gossip on the Internet in a new book.
He also has something to say about the Internet and civic empowerment: You have a situation now where the audience is so exalted and catered to that at the end of a Broadway play you will have the actors applauding for the audience, and the audience will take a bow. That's the power of the Internet, where consumers are seen to have such powers that they must be heeded. What this masks is a crude commercial pitch. Getting people to participate is just a way of getting people to consume.