Carmen Hermosillo had become one of the earliest believers in the new community of cyberspace. Her online name, was “Humdog”, and she lived on the west coast. But then she lost faith, and she posted an attack that caused a sensation online.
“It is fashionable to suggest” she wrote. “that cyberspace is some “island of the blessed” where people are free to indulge and express their Individuality.”
“This is not true.”
“I have seen many people spill out their emotions, their guts online, and I did so myself until I began to see I had commodified myself.”
“Commodification means that you turn something into a product that has a money value. In the 19th century commodities were made in factories by workers who were mostly exploited. But I created my interior thoughts as commodities for the corporations that owned the board that I was posting to, like CompuServe or AOL, and that commodity was then sold on to other consumer entities as entertainment.”
“Cyberspace” she wrote, “is a black hole, it absorbs energy and personality and then re-presents it as an emotional spectacle. It is done by businesses that commodify human interaction and emotion, and we are getting lost in the spectacle.”