Welcome to the Machine

You can't say that here


Some guy standing on a streetcorner prosthelytizing as everyone walking by ignores him or shuns him. Either way, ignored or shuned, when no one is listening, who is he talking to but himself? Most people would characterize talking to yourself in public as a form of mental illness. That is, unless they could see you weren't really talking to yourself. People walk down the street all the time talking to people who aren't there. Talking on cell phones. The device makes it okay, that person is normal.

What puts the guy on the streetcorner without the cell phone out there on the margins of sanity and persuasiveness is his poor use of communications tools. He just doesn't get it. He seems to think somehow that people will listen to a human voice. No one listens to the voice of another unmediated or unaltered by technologies of all kinds. What is the nature of the voice we listen to?