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[Ray Honeybourne <rayh@stocktonsfc.ac.uk>: GG: Reader]

A forward from Ray, who gave me permission to post it to the list.  For new
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To: mwatts@rci.rutgers.edu
From: Ray Honeybourne <rayh@stocktonsfc.ac.uk>
Subject: GG: Reader

Dear Mary Jo,
        Provocative stuff from "Music and Technology" but, like you, I'm not
sure what it is GG means by 'morality' in this context! I offer a few
immediate observations which, hopfully, will be analysed and dissected by
         With regard to the relevance of his comments to the Internet:
clearly, the WWW can 'analyse and dissect'; after all, you are inviting us
to do precisely this. However, I'm inclined to think that WWW could also be
seen as realising GG's worst fears in that it IS a conveyor belt, an
instantaneous relay system and an undiscriminating memory bank. In this last
respect, perhaps, we come to the question of 'morality' in terms of
editing/censorship.  GG, as a (liberal) humanist might well have found
himself in the dilemma most of us face in dealing with this question of the
capacity for an unedited cyberspace to house a virtually limitless quantity
of 'shortcomings and documented deficits'.
         Technology allows the camera to lie. GG celebrated the recording
studio's ability to produce an ideal impression through microscopic analysis
and subsequent alteration. The final product is an illustration of the end
justifying the means. I am not certain he would feel the same way about the
Internet which, all too often, is a vehicle for the uncommitted (in terms of
its accommodation of anything and everything) and the voyeuristic. Thus,
whereas the technology GG knew could distil the finest from a range of
separate ingredients, the WWW offers the opposite. To pick up on the camera
imagery in "Music and Technology": if the recording studio can be compared
with a photographic process which produces a glossy airbrushed image, then
the WWW is one with a very wide angle lens and a screen of near infinite
dimensions. The sheer size of the Internet encourages a certain passiveness
(surfing?) and its very variety militates against 'the idealization of an
impression' ... I'm not sure whether or no this is a 'moral' question, but
then, like you, I'm not too sure what GG meant. All comments and criticisms
                        All good wishes,
                       Ray Honeybourne.