No prizes for guessing this may be our least-populated (though hopefully much-visited) links page. Nonetheless, as they say, quality versus quantity. More suggestions always welcome!
David Denby 'Snark' (Simon & Schuster New York 2009) is a wide-ranging critique of insults throughout the ages--and argues persuasively (even if too soft on pro-Democrat snarkers) that the internet has made the art of the insult even more pervasive/nasty than hitherto. Predictably, positive reviews have been rare: but see http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2009/sep/06/snark-david-denby, which is as good as it gets. Denby argues his case here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d00Jg0j4kFY
Andrew Keen 'The Cult of the Amateur' (2007) is a fascinating & infuriating book. Some points hit home very well concerning the internet dumbing down culture/discourse. However, he is far too trusting of official (powerful) sources, and his own (very slick) blog epitomises the two positions he adopts, almost simultaneously. On the one hand, an awareness of the need to deconstruct & criticise developments in the history of the internet. On the other, a far too deferential attitude towards some who (like Keen) have made lots of money from the web. Eating cake & having it springs to mind--but well worth a look, as is the original book--http://andrewkeen.typepad.com/the_great_seduction/
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=114045279 Links to an extract from, and Radio interview concerning, Viktor Mayer-Schonberger's book 'Delete' (Princeton University Press 2009), arguing for the importance of deleting digital material that in human terms is best forgotten. Anyone who has ever been in a room with someone who perenially googles the internet as opposed to using brain cells/memory will empathise.