June 4, 2012: “My Internet” by Jonathan Lethem
This is an odd, very short story, from the point of view of someone who has developed an Internet within the Internet, one that is limited to 100 users, and has secretly developed another Internet within that, limited to just one. He speaks of a leader who foresaw the future and chose 100 elites to participate in the private Internet. The public Internet he finds confusing. But lately, he says, he’s “felt the urge for a deeper foray, the need for a more profound exclusion” and this has lead to the creation of his own Internet.
The irony, it seems to me, is that an Internet of one’s own is simply a return to the days before the Internet, when information wasn’t so easily shared and you only know what you know, not what everyone else knows.
Why this makes a short story that The New Yorker wanted to publish isn’t clear to me.