Cult of the Amateur Analysis – Part 2

Not too surprisingly, Keen’s book Cult of the Amateur caused controversy against those who disagree with his ideas. This has notably occurred with one of the book’s major targets, Lawrence Lessig, who has fought back against the claims made by the book.

Who do I find most convincing? I believe that the honor ultimately goes to Lessig. For starters, I find it interesting that Lessig chooses to combat Keen’s points through the implementation of the very mediums that Keen attacks. It may seem like an obvious point to some, but I feel that Lessig’s argument is that much more effective when it is done through the blog and wiki styles. Not only can he directly counter Keen’s points, but he can do so while subtly showing how the blog and wiki enhances the points he makes in defense.

Another point I find of interest is Lessig’s ability to acknowledge Keen’s points for what they are, even going so far as to agree with him on the most basic of ideas. I feel as though many arguments cannot be fought effectively while doing nothing but downplaying the things you are attacking. There are often some remote benefits and ideas to be had from the things you argue against, and it is important to note these for what they are, even if you just use them to further your points. Lessig is willing to acknowledge that Keen is right on the fundamental level of how we should be careful in using these mediums. Yet Lessig’s tone is never as radical as Keen’s, and that creates a more convincing argument in the end.

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1 Comment

Filed under Miscellaneous

One response to “Cult of the Amateur Analysis – Part 2

  1. A. Schwenk

    While I completely share your opinion on Lessig, I didn’t actually put it together that he was attacking Keen in the very mediums that Keen is plotting against. This is a great point, coupled with Lessig’s maturity to acknowledge Keen’s points. Looks like Lessig beat Keen at his own game.

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