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Content: Selected Essays on Technology, Creativity, Copyright, and the Future of the Future Paperback – 2 Oct 2008
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...more than just insightful, brilliant, and to the pointit’s also funny and fun to read.”
Electronic Frontier Foundation
If you want to know what’s happening at the sharp end of digital publication and new ideas about the relationships between authors and their readersdo yourself a favour and listen to what he has to say.”
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The good thing about the short stories is that they are easy to go through, so I found myself just wanting to read one more. The bad side of putting that many short stories in there is that the stories can be a little tiring when many of them are about the same subject.
Being as each article in its original format needs to be self-contained, it becomes obvious why an author might have to reintroduce a subject time and again. This is where I think that these books fail.
If you want to collect various essays and articles into a single book then I think it would be more beneficial to edit each article so that they fit together as part of a cohesive narrative that carries the reader through the information in the most economical way possible. Will this create a lot of work for the author? Of course it will. But we will be left with a much more streamlined book that is easier to read and less repetitive.
If you have read 'Information Doesn't Want to be Free: Laws for the Internet Age', a book by the same author that I highly recommend, you will find a much more cohesive version of the information in this book. That's not to say that this book does not have new and useful information, but there wasn't quite enough of it for my tastes.
Overall this is still an interesting read, possibly one that would be better had I not already read Information Doesn't Want to be Free, and was looking at this material with fresh eyes. It is well written and well researched, but I felt that it was slightly lacking overall.
My final thought would be to repeat my recommendation of two paragraphs ago. Read that book which tackles the same important subject, but does so with more skill in my opinion.
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My son is now involved in film-making and editing for an add agency in LA. Since "content" is a broad issue that involves his own work I sent it to him for whatever relevance it may have. But, a lot of water has gone under the bridge since Doctorow wrote this one. Just the same, it serves as a marker for what "content" was recently all about,and those in the business of knowing may need that marker for making judgements now or in the future.
Come on Cory, make your next book a little less visionary and a little more about WRITING.