Google Truth

I have been thinking about what I'm going to paint about next - decided to go over to my painting studio later on this afternoon – rather than earlier - and instead of painting from the figure, as I often do (I'm lazy – the subject is there for you, all you have to do is "frame it") I decided I'd like to paint about my life, about Google.

Yes, hearkening back to an older New York Times article from 2003, I'm picking up the idea of …."Is Google God"?   Is Google's version of what we see now more likely the Truth or version of Truth we'll consider than anything else?  I recall something that Seth Godin just wrote yesterday on Welcome to Twitterworld.

"..For an hour, hundreds of news stories stated (with authority) that John was going to leave the campaign because of Elizabeth's relapse. And then the campaign announced the real news. So in the next hour, one by one, all the media which minutes ago had been so certain of the facts turned around and printed new facts. And the thing is, it looks like someone in the Edwards camp changed their mind, when actually, there was exactly one announcement.

In the old asynchronous days, of course, we would have only heard the last story, the real one.

Same thing happens with rats at the KFC or with your brand. When the news cycle is reduced to seconds, rumours become facts even when they're not true."

And most people get that flow of information from …Google, in one form or another.

Thomas L. Friedman wrote a OP-ED that has continued to linger in my subconscious only to pop up in 2007 as the idea for a painting(s) about God Google. 

 "…The reality, though, is quite different. While you were sleeping after 9/11, not only has the process of technological integration continued, it has actually intensified — and this will have profound implications. I recently went out to Silicon Valley to visit the offices of Google, the world's most popular search engine. It is a mind-bending experience. You can actually sit in front of a monitor and watch a sample of everything that everyone in the world is searching for. (Hint: sex, God, jobs and, oh my word, professional wrestling usually top the lists.)"

That's old hat today, but in 2003, what  Thomas L. Friedman wrote was actually on all our minds.  Now we know that "Google" is God – the God of the Internet – I suppose. Even at AlwaysONNYC, which I covered in January, Google was not present yet dominated the conference (IE: is there a chink in Google's Armor? – everyone was speculating on this).

I haven't done the painting yet – here's a photo I'll start working from because I can't do this entirely from memory or from life – since I need my hands.















With all the talk about the "Google Phone" and how Google is "everywhere" I think my post on titled – Is Google God? Maybe the God of Search Engines – Idea for a painting talks about what I'm going to set out to try to create this weekend – or today.

I'll see what I end up with.   I guess you can't make a "ritual sacrifices" to Google?  Nah.. probably watching too many episodes of ROME on HBO.



6 thoughts on “Google Truth”

  1. Pingback: WebMetricsGuru
  2. Nice. I do think we need more artists who try to deal with where we are in the world right now. No one has really pushed us from Warhol’s post-modernism into the new information age, and maybe it’s works like this one that will manage the job. I think you are absolutely right, though, to focus on the mobile version. I read recently that more people in Asia are now accessing the web via their cells than via PCs or Laptops. It may be that the mobile device will come to dominate soon in terms of where we get our information. In addition, though, the mobile google gets at that sense of instantaneous information/ news, which you mention in your post. It isn’t enough just to get it – we need it now, and wherever we are. Our phones have made it impossible to escape, both from other people (my mother is infuriated if I don’t answer the phone now, because she can’t understand how I could miss a call if I have a cell), and from the ceaseless barrage of information.

  3. It’s quite sad that artists are more courageous to declare the truth in the World Wide Web than the ones who are directly working in the Internet. I hope more of us will be more aware of the real score in the Internet than the past few decades.

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