I wonder if one worthwhile way to use and think about Are.na is as an infrastructure for creating digital museums: focused explicitly on being visited and browsed, ordered and paired deliberately, featuring curated media content. Users are curators not just in the sense of private media collecting but of public media display on clean white walls.
Unlike modern readers, who follow the flow of a narrative from beginning to end, early modern Englishmen read in fits and starts and jumped from book to book. They broke texts into fragments and assembled them into new patterns by transcribing them in different sections of their notebooks. Then they reread the copies and rearranged the patterns while adding more excerpts. Reading and writing were therefore inseparable activities. They belonged to a continuous effort to make sense of things, for the world was full of signs: you could read your way through it; and by keeping an account of your readings, you made a book of your own, one stamped with your personality.
Long after the bulk of free-and-direct discourse retreated from the spooky public sphere into Mark'n'Jack's ClickLike Clubhouse
You can find yourself wondering, “Well, wouldn’t I get the same effect if I just read the block of text at the entrance to the exhibition room, or the catalog essay, or an interview with the artist—rather than looking at the pictures / installation / video art?” What is the surplus that the aesthetic “casing” of the statement / polemic / enquiry actually provides?
[Joker] violates the taboo which guards the moral incoherence of all American stories about supervillains: the correlate of the villain’s motiveless malignancy is the fundamental innocence of society, its right to continue as it is. Only an evil originating outside of that society can possibly explain the desire to harm it. But this fantasy of innocence is bound to collide with the gothic underpinnings of Batman’s moral universe: Gotham is a city of endemic corruption and decay, and its villains are endogenous, home-grown, expressions of a universal sickness.