Eric writes, on his blog, that he's found himself recommending people for jobs whom he's only "met" by reading their blogs. He describes the process as a burgeoning tribal affiliation, enabled by the 'Net.
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While some might consider Doctorow a booster for the online, wired lifestyle, his books contain subtle but pointed warnings about the flaws of high tech societies. Being a Tribalist, living out of circadian synch with the people around you, relating with people you mainly know as a handle on a screen, encourages paranoia and disloyalty, smartness instead of happiness. Art becomes an object lesson in how such a society can ruin a person, and his salvation doesn’t lie in technology.