Yes, I do understand that he said ‘world famous’, not just ‘famous’, but consider the following!

Yesterday was a hectic day on Twitter, thanks to the OPEN-tapes brouhaha. Some of the people involved have influential and popular media vehicles (like TV shows and very well-read magazine/newspaper columns) and people may question their credibility in the future. If controlled media and media as a vehicle being stuck with a few influential people prompted Warhol’s ’15 minutes of fame’ quip, how would it look like in the internet age?

After all, everything…nearly everything…is just a search away. Access to everything is universal. So, should we consider an extra dimension to the ’15 minutes of fame’ statement and bring time into the picture?

Let me explain.

If ’15 minutes of fame’ was considered a one-time occurrence, I’d picture it like a balloon popping out of a location in the globe…just once.

Now, with everything archived for easy access, forever, and by everybody, does the permanence of information change the 15 minutes? So, an issue like the tapes scandal would be popping out across many days/years whenever someone searches for information on the people involved or some other relevant context and given the possibility of instant sharing of information across many, smaller, personal networks, it’d be alive for a few minutes in that small network, then.

The balloon example would look like this – many smaller balloons popping out of many, many locations, across many, many days, somewhere in the world!

So, should we assume a timeline as a relevant basis for the 15 minutes of fame and rephrase it as ‘100 hours of fame’, for the internet generation, for instance?

In fact, Wikipedia refers to an altered version of Warhol’s quote for the internet generation – ‘On the Web, everyone will be famous to fifteen people‘…and it is credited to two people (though there is no clear information on who said this) – American technologist and co-author of the Cluetrain Manifesto, David Weinberger and Scottish artist, Momus.

That reworked quote assumes another dimension, that of the number of people that defines ‘famous’. And of course, it doesn’t take into account the network effect of the ’15 people’, or in other words, it perhaps severely undermines the potential viral effect of the ’15 people’.

I’m saying something within the lines of Warhol’s original quote, but adding a valid dimension of time, that seems outdated in the original, at least for our times, now.

My audacity? I know.

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