Thursday, April 12, 2012

On Don Quixote and the Internet

Like Don Quixote, are we engaged in a hopeless quest in tilting at Internet windmills?

First, who are “we”?  We’re Quentin Schultze and Randall Bytwerk, both professors in the Department of Communication Arts and Sciences at Calvin College with a long interest in the Internet (we co-taught an early course in web design in 1996).

Second, we have a forthcoming article in Etc.: A Review of General Semantics that studies the spread of the quotation at the head of this blog — an alleged quotation by Joseph Goebbels that as best we can determine is fabricated.  Nonetheless, it is currently on nearly 500,000 web sites.

Our goal, which will be reported in this blog, is to reduce the number of citations.  That is a challenging task and we are not at all confident of success. The next post outlines the challenge.

1 comment:

  1. I want to thank you both for your efforts! I am constantly shocked by the quote misappropriation which happens because of, or is exacerbated by the nature of, the internet (Plato's supposed: "Only the dead have seen the end of war," as one example).

    Keep it up! If even one person finds your blog in search of this quote's authenticity, you are a complete success!