Ornamentality in the New Media

In Anat Biletzki (ed.), Hues of Philosophy: Essays in Memory of Ruth Manor. College Publications. pp. 83-96 (2010)
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Ornamentality is pervasive in the new media and it is related to their essential characteristics: dispersal, hypertextuality, interactivity, digitality and virtuality. I utilize Kendall Walton's theory of ornamentality in order to construe a puzzle pertaining to the new media. the ornamental erosion of information. I argue that insofar as we use the new media as conduits of real life, the excessive density of ornamental devices which is prevalent in certain new media environments, forces us to conduct our inquiries under conditions of neustic uncertainty, that is, uncertainty concerning the kind of relationship we, the users, have to the propositional content mediated. I suggest that this puzzle calls upon us to consider what would be a viable logic of virtual discovery.
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