Monday, December 18, 2006

Time Magazine's Person of the Year

It's a mirror! Honestly. Buy the magazine and what you find is a mirror on the cover. This is a smart way of saying that YOU are the Time Magazine's Person of the Year. Though not "you-you" but some mythological type of "you":

It's about the many wresting power from the few and helping one another for nothing and how that will not only change the world, but also change the way the world changes," said Grossman, Time's technology writer and book critic.

"The tool that makes this possible is the World Wide Web," he said. "It's a tool for bringing together the small contributions of millions of people and making them matter."

So why didn't they name the Web the person of the year? I guess it's because the Web is not a person. But then neither are millions and millions of us "a person". In any case, the concept of the Person of the Year has changed from being the Person of the Year with Testicles to being a Good Person of the Year Who Had an Effect. Osama bin Laden never made it, even though he clearly was the person with the most effect on the world in 2001. The effect was horrible, true, but the initial definition for winning this competition didn't require goodness.

There is a point to the selection, though, if only we called the competition the Time Magazine's Trend/Fad/Fashion of the Year. But we don't call it that.

I get the reason for the selection, of course, and people on the internet can indeed be marvelous to each other, all sorts of political power is being grabbed and the powers-that-be are desperately trying to grab it back. But there are also trolls on the net. Just saying.