Vous reconnaissez-vous dans la "génération Facebook" ?

Zadie Smith ne se reconnaît pas dans cette génération et l’écrit. Sa critique du film The Social Network de David Fincher, qui vient de sortir sur les écrans en France, et qui est consacré à Facebook, lui en donne l’occasion. Son texte a ceci d’intéressant qu’il renverse le rapport de force entre les personnes qui sont "connectées" et celles qui ne le sont pas. Les premières demandent souvent aux secondes de se justifier. Pour Zadie Smith, il faut leur retourner la question.

"World makers, social network makers, ask one question first: How can I do it? Zuckerberg [le fondateur de Facebook] solved that one in about three weeks. The other question, the ethical question, he came to later: Why? Why Facebook? Why this format? Why do it like that? Why not do it another way? The striking thing about the real Zuckerberg, in video and in print, is the relative banality of his ideas concerning the “Why” of Facebook. He uses the word “connect” as believers use the word “Jesus,” as if it were sacred in and of itself: “So the idea is really that, um, the site helps everyone connect with people and share information with the people they want to stay connected with…” Connection is the goal. The quality of that connection, the quality of the information that passes through it, the quality of the relationship that connection permits – none of this is important. That a lot of social networking software explicitly encourages people to make weak, superficial connections with each other, and that this might not be an entirely positive thing, seem to never have occurred to him."

En allant voir le film, elle a eu une crise d’angoisse terrible : "Bientôt, je vais avoir 40 ans, puis 50… puis…" Peut-on ressentir ça quand on est sur Facebook ?

"I’ve noticed that when a teenager is murdered, at least in Britain, her Facebook wall will often fill with messages that seem to not quite comprehend the gravity of what has occurred. You know the type of thing: Sorry babes! Missin’ you!!! Hopin’ u iz with the Angels. I remember the jokes we used to have LOL! PEACE XXXXX. When I read something like that, I have a little argument with myself: “It’s only poor education. They feel the same way as anyone would, they just don’t have the language to express it.” But another part of me has a darker, more frightening thought. Do they genuinely believe, because the girl’s wall is still up, that she is still, in some sense, alive? What’s the difference, after all, if all your contact was virtual?"

La génération "Facebook" mérite bien mieux que Facebook, écrit-elle.

Lire l'article

Source : The New York Review of Books, novembre 2010