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Media Virus!: Hidden Agendas in Popular Culture
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Media Virus!: Hidden Agendas in Popular Culture

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  254 ratings  ·  6 reviews
The most virulent viruses today are composed of information. In this information-driven age, the easiest way to manipulate the culture is through the media. A hip and caustically humorous McLuhan for the '90s, culture watcher Douglas Rushkoff now offers a fascinating expose of media manipulation in today's age of instant information.
Paperback, 368 pages
Published February 6th 1996 by Ballantine Books (first published 1994)
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This book helped me to better understand the concept of the meme. I also appreciated the look at the "guerilla" media as well as the history of television daytime talk shows. Rushkoff gives a nice progression of how the medium started out as a serious look at current issues with a studio audience being allowed to interact with guests (think Donahue) and how it moved on to lose the intellect and zero in on entertainment (think Springer). Also, Rushkoff's theories on the subversive content in such ...more
Jim Jewell
I read the hardcover in 1995, my first few months in Seattle, after it jumped off a library shelf at me. Changed my thinking in a dynamic and lasting way.

I dig Douglas, all of his stuff, unabashedly. He's not for everybody, as the parade of friends who returned this book to me unread will attest, but his style works for me and ideas appeal to me.
You can't hold its dated-ness against it. That said, the second half of the book did not hold up to the promise of the first half - he seems to lose his focus on the meme.
Read this awhile ago. It will probably read as very dated nowadays unless they've added some new material in the latest editions. Interesting reading nonetheless.
Captaine Hoo-hoo
Good preliminary guide to the realization that a lot of our thoughts aren't thoughts and aren't put there by our own doing...
Wayne Porter
Excellent text on the construction and dissection of media viruses and memetic propogation.
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Douglas Rushkoff is a New York-based writer, columnist and lecturer on technology, media and popular culture.
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