Friday, March 18, 2011

Kokonuts vs. Kokonuts

I have just read about Daniel Bejar and Daniel Bejar in The New Yorker. One is a musician, another an artist. The artist has made himself look like the musician and as an "art" project in real time in real life is playing on the same-name identity. His project is called Googleganger, with those two dots over the a.

All of which got me thinking.

Who, after all, is Pawlie Kokonuts?

And if I used my real name, would it really be me?

Who is me?

This is what employers and education officials don't seem to get. They warn people to be careful about their online identity and online representations, but who is who? And what is what? What is real? Why can't anything online be considered the mere fictional fabrications of a virtual persona?

This is nothing new in literature, going back to Truman Capote's non-fiction novel "In Cold Blood," and the same with many works by Norman Mailer. Frederick Exley wrote "fictional memoirs," featuring a character named Frederick Exley. But he wasn't Frederick Exley the author, was he?

So, who is who? And what's what?

Deep questions.

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