Santiago Swallow’s books and articles discuss how identity can be manipulated organized across multiple online media, especially in the areas of user generated content. He is one of the best-known and most widely influential thinkers and writers on Internet identity and the mediated self. His writings include predictions of many of major developments in the twentieth-first century, including personal virtualization; the use of trust tokens to authenticate personal reputation; and the decisive importance of cross-referenced source and context in an age where the self can be recreated endlessly using powerful online tools. In 2012, Swallow coined the term “socially imagined self,” and proposed that self-authentication, as opposed to self-actualization, is the next frontier of human cognitive development. He investigates the ways in which the “imagined, inauthentic self” can be propagated and disseminated globally via the Internet. Follow him on Twitter here, or learn more about his work.

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