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A Raw Look at Social Media

Kobek’s “i hate the internet” is insightful without being insulting.

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A Raw Look at Social Media

Ashley Hay

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Sometimes, reading adults’ opinions about social media sucks. It seems that every commentary circles back around to our generation’s sense of entitlement, lack of patience and obsession with selfies. But that doesn’t mean that it’s an issue we shouldn’t think about. Social media is an incredibly large part of our lives, whether we realize it or not, so here’s a book published just this year that shows the impacts – positive and negative – of social media without discussing the same old generational themes.

Jarrett Kobek’s “i hate the internet is humorous, touching and rambling in the best of ways. The book tells a story of a group of people in San Francisco, weaving in and out of their different viewpoints with ease. But perhaps only half of this book is focused on their stories; the other half is filled with his witty, lesson-like interjections describing cultural phenomena that we all take for granted.

Kobek breaks down certain themes and ideas, such as celebrity or Mickey Mouse, by defining it with almost childishly basic terms and ideas. In this way, although the focus of his book is on social media, Kobek addresses everything from Beyoncé to World War II. While it’s easy to argue that Kobek oversimplifies complex issues, his writing will force you to re-examine your beliefs and take a new look at the way we think.

For example, race is described as having “eumelanin in the basale stratum of [one’s] epidermis.” From the first time race is introduced, Kobek will only refer to it in those terms for the rest of the book, using this biology lesson to force his audience to reconsider the something that is so influential in modern society.

Ultimately, “i hate the internet” is a great book to gain a new perspective of modern technology. Although Kobek criticizes the way we use social media, he does so in a way that is fresh and leaves his audience without the bitter aftertaste that so many other opinion pieces do.

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A Raw Look at Social Media