With the rise of the Web, writing has met its photography. And by that I mean writing has encountered a situation similar to what happened uh, to painting with the invention of photography. A technology so much better at replicating reality that in order to survive, painting had to ors— or, uh, alter its course radically.
With social media, the compelling opportunities for self-expression outstrip the supply of things we have to confidently say about ourselves. The demand for self-expression overwhelms what we might dredge up from the inside, from our true selves. So the self that we’re expressing in social media has to be posited elsewhere. We start to borrow from the network. We start to borrow from imagined future selves that we can project. We start to borrow from the media themselves and from other kinds of content circulating there that we can now constitute ourselves with.