The Legacy of 2009

2009 has been a remarkable year in every aspect. Struggles were fought, issues were disputed, but in the end, new heights were reached. What follows are various statements from the web on this fateful year. (With focus on technology.)

Doug Gross [CNN]:

  • This [2009] was the year that online social media exploded.
  • It was a big year for technology: Twitter and Facebook’s popularity exploded, while new smartphones, e-readers and a host of other gadgets cropped up to compete for our plugged-in affection.

Mark Leibovich [NYTimes]:

  • You could Tweet all the highlights of 2009 and still have time for dithering.
  • But if ever there were a year to put buzzwords before a death panel, this would be it, before the aporkalypse comes.
  • Whatever, it was a year when a lot of people acted stupidly.
  • If this year were a state dinner, even the Salahis wouldn’t Salahi it.

John D. Sutter [CNN]:

  • Engineers didn’t make huge improvements to technology in 2009. The year’s big tech names — Twitter, Facebook, Google, Apple, Amazon — all existed before January. Instead, this is the year technology changed us.
  • We could have done any of these things in 2008. But we embraced in unprecedented numbers a digital-centered life in 2009.
  • By the end of 2009, having a basic cell phone wasn’t good enough anymore.
  • Facebook now has more than 350 million users — that’s more people than live in the United States and is more than double the 150 million people who were on Facebook at the start of the year.
  • In 2009, it’s no longer enough to search for information that was current 30 minutes or an hour ago. Now, Internet junkies look for their news, Tweets and links to be updated in “real-time,” just as they are on Twitter.

David Von Drehle [Time]:

  • [2009] A year that dawned to the chime of change soon got bogged down in intractable troubles.
  • Struggle abroad and struggle at home: surely those were defining glimpses of this Moment in our history.

Alex Altman [Time]:

  • We were warned. But when the worst recession in seven decades smacked us in the face, all the gruesome auguries did little to dull the pain. As unemployment soared to 10.2% — the highest rate since 1983 — spendthrifts became tightwads, a new age of austerity dawned, and the era of easy money lurched to a close.

Pete Cashmore [CNN]:

  • The “real-time Web” is booming. From Twitter to Facebook to new search engines that discover information posted just seconds ago, it seems the 2010 Web will be fueled by our desire for instant gratification.
  • We’re seeing the ongoing voluntary erosion of privacy through public sharing on Facebook and Twitter . . . [link]
  • One factor that’s dramatically different at the end of this decade versus the beginning: Ubiquitous connectivity.
  • The network itself has become faster and virtually omnipotent.

For more, including the politics and news aspects, check out the following features:

Last, but not least, we honor

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