Sunday Book-Thought 72

Writing turned a spotlight on the high, dim Sierras of speech; writing was the visualization of acoustic space. It lit up the dark.
A good quill put an end to talk, abolished mystery, gave us enclosed space and towns, brought roads and armies and bureaucracies. It was the basic metaphor with which the cycle of CIVILIZATION began, the step from the dark into the light of the mind. The hand that filled a paper built a city.
The handwriting is on the celluloid walls of Hollywood; the Age of Writing has passed. We must invent a NEW METAPHOR, restructure our thoughts and feelings. The new media are not bridges between man and nature: they are nature.
The MECHANIZATION of writing mechanized the visual-acoustic metaphor on which civilization rests; it created the classroom and mass education, the modern press and telegraph. It was the original assembly-line. Gutenberg made all history available as classified data: the transportable book brought the world of the dead into the space of the gentleman’s library; the telegraph brought the entire world of the living to the workman’s breakfast table.
Marshall McLuhan (designed by Harley Parker), Counterblast (London: Rapp & Whiting, 1969), pp. 14-15.

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Sunday Book-Thought 66

The concept and theory of produsage which is introduced in this book, I hope, will provide a useful tool to understand and describe the present shift away from industrial modes of production and towards collaborative, user-led content creation. In keeping with the core principles of produsage itself, where knowledge remains always in the process of development, and where information remains always unfinished, extensible, and envolving, this book is intended as the starting point, not the closing statement , in a conversation about produsage and its implications; it should not be read as providing a final definition of produsage and its processes that must remain fixed in stone (or at least in ink on paper) forever.
That said, I realize the irony of offering this opening statement of an ongoing conversation about produsage in a form which epitomizes the very model of traditional, industrial production which produsage so thoroughly departs from – in the form of a printed book. The book format is also a useful indication, however, that, for all the enthusiasm about produsage and related forms of user-led content creation, the process of establishing produsage as a credible and reliable alternative for industrial production has only just begun; the final balance between production and produsage (none is likely to replace the other entirely, of course) remains yet to be determined.
Axel Bruns, Blogs, Wikipedia, Second Life, and Beyond: From Production to Produsage (New York: Peter Lang, 2008), pp. 6-7.