New media maven Douglas Rushkoff has always been particularly good at explaining the operating systems of contemporary life.
In his controversial new book Throwing Rocks At The Google Bus, he argues that the operating system of our tech economy is an unrelenting growth of which we are all – from Google and Facebook to you and I – victims.
So what about politics, I asked him when we met at the DLD NYC conference? What is the operating system of the 2016 election?
It was the wrong question. What I should have asked about are the operating systems of the election. That, as Rushkoff notes, is the weirdest thing about this year’s really weird election. Each candidate is working off a different operating system, representing a completely different media paradigm.
Rushkoff explains that Bernie Sanders is the candidate of the radio age, Hillary Clinton of the tv age and Donald Trump of our internet age. Trump’s “ideology” is digital, Rushkoff notes. He is, to coin a Rushkoffian term, a “digigenic” candidate. “Rather than Occupy, Rushkoff concludes rather depressingly, “We have Trump.”
As always, many thanks to the folks at CALinnovates for helping produce this series.