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Time Magazine Person of the Year — It's You 244

Posted by kdawson
from the who-me? dept.
Thib writes to point out that Time Magazine has picked you — or us, or the Internet — as Person of the Year because you control the Information Age. From the article: "But look at 2006 through a different lens and you'll see another story, one that isn't about conflict or great men. It's a story about community and collaboration on a scale never seen before. It's about the cosmic compendium of knowledge Wikipedia and the million-channel people's network YouTube and the online metropolis MySpace. It's about the many wresting power from the few and helping one another for nothing and how that will not only change the world, but also change the way the world changes."
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Time Magazine Person of the Year — It's You

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  • It's You. (Score:5, Funny)

    by croddy (659025) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:16PM (#17278796)
    How are you, gentlemen?
  • What? (Score:5, Funny)

    by grungebox (578982) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:17PM (#17278812) Homepage
    How could Time pick such a self-absorbed, idiotic loser as Person of the Year?
    • Re:What? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Mathonwy (160184) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @04:17PM (#17279290)
      The coolest bit though is the ad they have running on the same page. It's from Chrysler. It reads "You may not be the time person of the year... [but you can drive like one]"

      Stupid Chrysler. Just ASSUMING that I wouldn't be the person of the year or something. Sheesh.

      Daily Kos has a nice screen grab of the ad here [dailykos.com]
    • Re:What? (Score:5, Funny)

      by Xemu (50595) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @04:32PM (#17279422) Homepage
      How could Time pick such a self-absorbed, idiotic loser as Person of the Year?

      Because they felt Paris Hilton has had too much media attention already?

    • by Tablizer (95088)
      How could Time pick such a self-absorbed, idiotic loser as Person of the Year?

      But 30 million self-absorbed, idiotic losers can move the world. As one of those self-absorbed, idiotic losers, I would like to say on behalf of all us self-absorbed, idiotic losers: we will break you!
             
  • Misspelled (Score:5, Funny)

    by rudy_wayne (414635) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:17PM (#17278816)


    They should have spelled it "YUO". That would have been funny.
  • Sad choice (Score:5, Insightful)

    by edwardpickman (965122) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:19PM (#17278830)
    In truth it's Time acknowledging we are a narcacistic society.
    • by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:40PM (#17278984)
      ... aimed at a narcissistic society.

      And it will work. This issue will be one of the biggest sellers ever.
    • Re:Sad choice (Score:5, Insightful)

      by vought (160908) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @04:13PM (#17279254)
      It's also sad because it shows how cowardly and indecisive the press is these days.

      Unable to choose and analyze a single figure honestly, Time decided to pick everyone and to laud their audience with praise about how something created and maintained by very few (the Internet) has enabled millions to show their creativity, stupidity, whatever.

      Instead of selecting a figure that has truly affected all of us, Time showed the same cowardice they displayed by choosing Rudy Guiliani in 2001. Instead of a true "Person of the Year", they chose to pick a "Person" who is unassailable, insulating Time from having to make a tough choice or controversial conclusions about their "Person", and avoiding the accompanying criticism that many in the media seem to fear so much these days.

      Screw Time for being cowards - "You" doesn't deserve to be Person of the Year any more than "Wheels" deserve to be Conveyance of the Year, or "Computers" deserve to be "Device of the Year".
      • by ejp1082 (934575)
        While Time magazine and "Person of the Year" is kind of a meaningless joke at this point... this is one of the few choices I can get behind. YouTube, Wikipedia, Google, etc. changed the world in the last year. And I think crediting the users of those sites makes a lot more sense than crediting the builders of those same sites. And even the most casual users participate by, favoriting, or simply increasing the view counts that help items get to the front page over others.

        If that doesn't convince you, look at
      • by Lumpy (12016)
        Cowardly indecisive and shallow.

        Yes their are glimmering moments in the internet that are wonderful.. but 99.99% of it is inane stupidity.

        If someone from another planet looked at what was on the internet to determine what we are. they would see that we are 70% stupid sheep, 20% science, 10% revolutionary.

        Good god, for the content on myspace alone they would nuke us into the stone age from orbit.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Danny Rathjens (8471)
        You may be correct, but how many people like us that feel this way actually subscribe to Time magazine? The only people's opinion they have to concern themselves with are their readers - and potential readers which arguably we are also not a part.

        Screw Time for being cowards - "You" doesn't deserve to be Person of the Year any more than "Wheels" deserve to be Conveyance of the Year, or "Computers" deserve to be "Device of the Year".

        Apparently you invented those last two yourself because "Wheels" were nev

        • by vought (160908)
          Apparently you invented those last two yourself because "Wheels" were never chosen; but coincidentally, Time chose "the Computer" as man of the year in 1982.


          I know. It was a tongue-in-cheek example. I read that issue when it was published, and admired the choice at the time, as I still do. But to name "everyone" person of the year is a cop-out. Naming the computer person of the year in 1982 was an effort to signify how important the heretofore inaccessible devices were becoming in our lives.
    • by diegocgteleline.es (653730) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @04:32PM (#17279426)
      It's not narcissism. The times person of the 2006 it's only *ME*!

      It's so obvious, I'm so important they don't even need to write my name, just "you".

      So this is not really aimed for a narcissistic society, it's aimed just at me. I'm sorry (well I'm not, it's just an expression), but you're wrong and I'm right.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:19PM (#17278834)
    Inanimate carbon rod.
  • Lame. . . (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Monkey-Man2000 (603495) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:20PM (#17278840)
    Let me be the first to say how lame Time was picking this, when Salon made a much more interesting pick [salon.com].
    • Re:Lame. . . (Score:5, Insightful)

      by loftwyr (36717) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @04:32PM (#17279420)
      Time has been copping out for years. They choose something simple or someone inoffensive when there are lots of people who have affected the news (for good or ill).

      If they give up and name it properly, soon it will be Time's Inoffensive Concept/Being of the Year!
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Tablizer (95088)
        Time has been copping out for years. They choose something simple or someone inoffensive when there are lots of people who have affected the news (for good or ill).

        Indeed. Time has repeatedly said that the "award" is about level of influence, and NOT a value judgement. Yet, Osama Bin Laden was rejected over Rudy Juliani. Time pussies!
             
    • by kinglink (195330)
      So salon chose one person who videotaped a random senator, gave it to the other senator's team and won him an election.

      Funny to me that's not that important for three reasons.

      A. I have not seen the video, have no need to, and really don't care about George Allen.

      B. It is localized to one area of the country

      C. The whole article blows his importance out of proportion, and makes it sound like this guy is a major racist. However the term was directed at him, who was basically videotaping and spying on Allen f
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by CashCarSTAR (548853)
      No. You're wrong. Although I don't disagree with you that he's important, per se, without that video gaining wide exposure via YouTube, and various blogs and such, it never would have gotten off the ground, or ignored as a "dirty trick" of the Webb campaign.

      But because it came from friends and family, it came organically, people stopped to listen just a little bit longer than they might

      Time's explaination for their decision, is that the new importance of communitity tools changes how change is made. In the
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by meta-monkey (321000)
        Actually, no, the video was not made popular by YouTube or blogs at all. Sidarth, the videographer, worked for the Webb campaign, and brought the tape to the other staffers after the event, and they sat on it for a week or so until the Washington Post ran a story about it, and then the 24/7 news networks jumped on it during a slow news week. It wasn't put on the internet or YouTube until AFTER the major media outlets deemed it "newsworthy." So in this way it's almost the complete opposite of Time's "Man
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Fnkmaster (89084)
          Apparently it was, at one time, used by French speakers in North Africa to refer to blacks. That is a truly obscure racial epithet. I just checked Wikipedia, and the entry for this word didn't exist until after the story broke. Now, I'm not saying that Allen isn't a racist. I don't know much of anything about the guy. But I find it bizarre that, first, he actually was aware of this slur, and that second, a seasoned politician would use intentionally use a racial slur against someone pointing a video camera
          • It still doesn't make any sense. Why would he call a person who was obviously Indian a racial slur for a black person? And, most importantly, why would a politician point directly into a video camera, and call the cameraman a racial slur during a political rally? Seems far more likely that he either made the word up, or at least didn't know what it meant.

            Regardless, that's not the real point of my post. The point was that this wasn't a Web 2.0 story. Heck, I don't think it was even a Web 1.0 story. Th
            • by ejp1082 (934575)
              It's a "Web 2.0" story because everyone saw the video on YouTube and no one saw it on CNN.

              Who broke the story hardly matters - if that's the metric, then bloggers don't matter at all since 99% of the original content out there is still written by "old media". Bloggers (currently) serve as filters, fact-checkers, and in some cases (this case), amplifiers. I simply can't imagine that it would have had the longevity and impact it did without Youtube+Bloggers, who kept it going long after the mainstream media
        • Actually, no, the video was not made popular by YouTube or blogs at all. In the "macaca" case, the same old big media outlets made it news, and then people shared it on the web after the fact. This is Web 1.0.

          From the Salon article:

          The campaign did not put the video on YouTube, the file-sharing service, until the Post had taken the bait, publishing a short story online. It was a relatively slow news week, in the dead heat of August vacation season, and the political press, backed by hundreds of bloggers, we

      • ... is that none of those people you named, nor the person above, had ANY IMPACT ON THE WORLD AT ALL outside the U.S.

        Low-level American Politics doesn't affect the whole world.
    • ...how lame Time was picking this...

      Sort of brings back fond memories of Spin Magazine's pick for Album Of The Year in 2000, I quote: "It's Your Hard Drive, Stupid".
      Number 2? Radiohead's "Kid A".

      To be fair, the abstract concept of a community could have been fascinating if Time had scratched deeper. As an example, at the Technology, Entertainment and Design (TED) conferences in February of this year, Al Gore did his 'slideshow' a couple of months before "An Inconvenient Truth" came out, and when he menti
  • Resume (Score:5, Funny)

    by method77 (943066) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:21PM (#17278854) Homepage
    My resume will now say "Time Person Of The Year 2006"
  • by jjohnson (62583) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:23PM (#17278870) Homepage
    They passed on naming Osama bin Laden in 2001. The original intent was to name the person with the greatest impact. In 1938 Hitler was Man of the Year; in 1939 it was Stalin, just because the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact gave Hitler breathing room to invade the rest of Europe.

    In 2001 bin Laden was obviously the personage with the most impact, but people have come to see Person of the Year as laudatory, so now Time is constrained to pick popular figures rather than infamous ones, even if it's the infamous who mattered more.
    • by 0racle (667029)
      Who cares since in reality it was never relevant to anything. It might be conversation material but even that is a stretch.
    • by udderly (890305) * on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:31PM (#17278930)
      In 2001 bin Laden was obviously the personage with the most impact, but people have come to see Person of the Year as laudatory, so now Time is constrained to pick popular figures rather than infamous ones, even if it's the infamous who mattered more.

      Exactly...a classic sellout. Time is a gutless rag that is more interested in marketing than anything else, and they were afraid that they would lose subscribers and advertising dollars.

      Mahmoud Ahmadinejad probably should have been the MoTY this year, but same deal as 2001.
      • Mahmoud Ahmadinejad probably should have been the MoTY this year, but same deal as 2001.

        I disagree with Ahmadinejad.

        To be honest I thought Gates and Buffet were shoe-ins.
        • by Aladrin (926209)
          Wait... Can you have 2 shoe-ins at the same time?
        • To be honest I thought Gates and Buffet were shoe-ins.

          2005: The Good Samaritans: Bono (b. 1960), Bill Gates (b. 1955), and Melinda Gates (b. 1964)
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Person_of_the_Year [wikipedia.org]

          Apparently they had a hard time choosing Einstein in 99 over Hitler for Man of the Century, but ended up going the easy way out also. They've also chosen the American Soldier, Bush, and Clinton twice. And they even chose the computer one year.

          • Apparently they had a hard time choosing Einstein in 99 over Hitler for Man of the Century.

            Niels Bohr, baby, yeah!
    • Person of the Year is irrelevent ever since... They passed on naming Osama bin Laden in 2001.

      Time Magazine died even earlier than that. I still remember the moment I concluded Time was no longer worth my time. It was the mid-to-late eighties, and Time magazine had an editorial where they announced (paraphrase) "Environmentalism is too important to remain neutral, and from now on we are taking an advocacy stand."

      What kind of news magazine announces that they're not going to strive for a balanced view a

  • Questionable (Score:4, Insightful)

    by spykemail (983593) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:23PM (#17278872) Homepage
    Even ignoring that we are a collective and not a person this is kind of corny. It's awesome they're recognizing the trend towards internet communities of individuals working together for the common good but I can't help thinking that this is a cheesy publicity stunt to increase subscriptions.
    • by PCM2 (4486)

      Even ignoring that we are a collective and not a person this is kind of corny. It's awesome they're recognizing the trend towards internet communities of individuals working together for the common good but I can't help thinking that this is a cheesy publicity stunt to increase subscriptions.

      Step 1: Publish a weekly print magazine devoted to news and photojournalism.
      Step 2: Tell everybody that the Internet is where it's at, MySpace is bringing people together, bloggers are reporting the news, Flickr is

  • by 8127972 (73495) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:24PM (#17278886)
    .... We need to come up with an acceptance speech?
  • ME!!! (Score:4, Funny)

    by spiritraveller (641174) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:29PM (#17278918)
    And here I was, thinking they were going to pick everyone else!

    Oh happy day.

    It comes with a prize right? It has to come with a prize. What? It doesn't??? Lame. Give it to someone else then.
  • by jorghis (1000092) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:31PM (#17278932)
    It seems like person of the year is some kind of endorsement these days. They used to just give it to whoever was the most important person of that year or changed the world the most. In the past this has included people who changed the course of world history like Stalin and Hitler. These days they would never put someone like that up as their person of the year. They seem to be focused on picking a choice which is either feel good patriotic (like the president if it happens to be a year when his approval rating is high) or gimicky (like this) in the past decade or so. It is a great example of how journalists in our society are paranoid of saying anything that could be taken as an endorsment of terrorists or any other axis of evil folks these days.
    • by imsabbel (611519)
      Or it went to the PC in 1982, or the women of america (forgot the year).

      Seriously, the usage of the internet by the billion of poeple currently being online, and all the side-effects, are certainly not to be neglected.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by spire3661 (1038968)
      "It is a great example of how journalists in our society are paranoid of saying anything that could be taken as an endorsment of terrorists or any other axis of evil folks these days." Given the current political climate, do you blame them?
      • by pimpimpim (811140)
        They help creating this political climate. How would you learn about any political decision if not via the media. Do you directly read the proceedings of the senate, etc? No. The media allow a faulty political climate to exist by (willingly) failing to treat its problems. In contrast to certain emotions of this time, it is not unpatriotic to question your government.
    • They used to just give it to whoever was the most important person of that year or changed the world the most. In the past this has included people who changed the course of world history like Stalin and Hitler. These days they would never put someone like that up as their person of the year. They seem to be focused on picking a choice which is either feel good patriotic (like the president if it happens to be a year when his approval rating is high) or gimicky (like this) in the past decade or so. I

      We s

  • will be so proud.

  • Soylent Green^W^WThe internet is people!
  • You never know if you is singular or plural. At least down south they have Ya'll, and locally where I live it's Yinz.
  • What does this say? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Thansal (999464) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:40PM (#17278998)
    Why did they pick internet culture (basicly what they are saying) as the person of the year?

    Where there no great people this year? Did no one do anything that really stood out (or a series of events)?

    Personaly I think that is true. We have no heros at the moment. There are no more (for the moment) world famus individuals that shape how we act/view the world. All we have are big names that the world looks at and wory about.

    My realization on this came a few weeks ago when listening to some random news in the morning (NPR), and hearing a report reffer to Bush as "Mr. Bush" repeatedly. It sorta stuck in my head, it was the only time I can remember a reporter calling a sitting prez "Mr. *****" instead of "President *****", even when they were from the opposite side of the political fence (Fox to a dem, NPR to a Repub, etc).

    As for picking internet culture instead?
    Meh.
    It hasn't changed much since last year. Bogs, web 2.0, what ever you wana focus on was all just as active last year as it was this year.
    • by PCM2 (4486) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:58PM (#17279136) Homepage
      My realization on this came a few weeks ago when listening to some random news in the morning (NPR), and hearing a report reffer to Bush as "Mr. Bush" repeatedly. It sorta stuck in my head, it was the only time I can remember a reporter calling a sitting prez "Mr. *****" instead of "President *****", even when they were from the opposite side of the political fence (Fox to a dem, NPR to a Repub, etc).

      When the Constitution was drafted, the president was specifically not meant to be a monarch or figurehead of extreme distinction. My understanding is that the honorific "Mister" has always been acceptable for a president, sitting or otherwise.

      But here is what NPR has to say [npr.org] on the matter:

      The title, such as "President," "Mr." or "Ms.", in front of a name is called an honorific. NPR uses the honorific "President" on first reference and then "Mr." for all subsequent mentions. This has been NPR's style going back at least to the Ford administration. Most other broadcasters have the same policy. It also makes for better writing to vary the honorific.

      Newspapers seem to have a different standard. For some reason, the president is usually referred to as "President Bush" or "the president," on first reference. But the honorific is rarely used on second reference. And in newspaper headlines particularly, the solitary "Bush" is often seen.

      The president is the only person who -- by decree and tradition at NPR -- gets the honorific. All others who are mentioned in news reports are usually referred to by their title or occupation on first reference ("Jane Doe is a reporter for The New York Times..."). After that, it's surnames only.

      • by Thansal (999464)
        huh, interesting.

        I really need to start paying more attention to that and actualy note how they reffer to people.

        what really caught it for me was that the report at the white house had used "Mr. Bush" through out (He reffered to him by name repeatidly, but never said president), where as the host of the show said "President Bush" repeatedly after the fact. (unfortunatly I can't give a name of the show or when it was as I honestly can't remember at the moment), however thanks for the awsome link.
        • by PCM2 (4486)

          thanks for the awsome link.

          No problem. If this sort of thing interests you, you will notice that pretty much every publication/media outlet has its own copy style. Most start with a well-known guide like the Associated Press Stylebook or the Chicago Manual of Style, but most also create their own additions/changes. (In many cases this is just plain necessary -- I work in computer trade journalism, for example, and we encounter a lot of terms/names/jargon etc. that just aren't covered in the mainstream g

    • This isn't the first time that Time hasn't picked one or a small group of people for person of the year [wikipedia.org]:

      1950: The American Fighting-Man
      1960: U.S. scientists
      1969: The Middle Americans
      1982: The Computer
      1988: Endangered Earth
      2003: The American Soldier
  • by The Hobo (783784) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:41PM (#17279000)
    No individual recognition. Less money than a nobel. Lame.
  • What's a magazine? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Kohath (38547) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @03:41PM (#17279006)
    An anachronistic publication chooses a "man of the year" and we're supposed to care?

    In other news, the Communist Party has named Fidel Castro it's man of the year again, just beating out Hugo Chavez. Slashdot names CmdrTaco man of the year. Microsoft names Major Nelson man of the year. I think the NY Times is going to make "the international terrorist" their person of the year. And international terrorists are going to name "the NY Times reporter" their person of the year, just beating out "the Associated Press reporter" despite the AP's recent efforts to catch up.

    I'm nominating myself for my own Kohath man of the year award this year. I think I might win.
  • I give more of my wealth, so finally the recognition I deserve!
  • Looks to me like it's just time magazine acknowledging how completely irrelevant they are. Too bad they can only pull this lame copout once.
  • The only reason that Time is acknowleding You now is because large corporations (not You, but Google, et alii) are finally starting to catch on and investing billions to capture the attention of You. Individuals have been outflanking the Media for years now, whether it was the much-despised Matt Drudge, or bloggers debunking forged documents that were done in Word, not on a typewriter.

    So, thank you Time, you flatter Me, though perhaps a bit disingenuously. The only reason I see that you acknowledge Me now
  • Oh dear... (Score:5, Funny)

    by rrohbeck (944847) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @04:13PM (#17279244)
    George W is going to read this.
  • Shouldn't the Person of the Year be "u"? ur teh person of teh yr!
  • So much for this ad [ultramercial.com].
  • Next Year (Score:3, Funny)

    by Hoch (603322) <hochhech@@@yahoo...com> on Sunday December 17, 2006 @04:25PM (#17279356)
    This pick is certainly more appealing than next year's pick: The Machines.
  • In Soviet Russia, the Internets choose YOU.
  • It's nice to see community achievements getting some positive recognition; especially when contrasted with the spectacle of the forces [riaa.com] of [microsoft.com] evil [sco.com], who oppose freedom, being panned in the press and in court ;-) It's a good end to the year!

    Who would have thought it; we're not just a bunch of commie anti-capitalists and foil-hat wearing conspiracy theorists...
  • There is even a reflective cover so that you can see yourself in the magazine, so there's really only one question to ask:

    Are you a Lebowski achiever?

  • by Tablizer (95088) on Sunday December 17, 2006 @05:18PM (#17279792) Homepage Journal
    I for one would like to welcome myself as our new digital overloard.
  • The paragon of self-aggrandizement of the baby-boomer generation is now complete.
  • In social terms, the individual has always been in control of everything in society. A lot of people are not fully aware of this because it requires a prespective that is rarely generally taught in society (probably because it has its dangers), but generally speaking anything can be changed if individuals just decided it. Of course, they wouldn't all coordinate their behavior by default, so making large scale changes requires massive organization. This phenomenon was primarily taken advantage of and serv

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