1. From, accessed in 2005.
2. For an excellent account of how media transform the relations of humans to ma-
chines, see Hayles 2005.
1. perfect transmissions
1. Foranextensivereviewofrecenttechnologiesthatperformthiscoupling,seeMitchell
2. For a discussion of information and communications theory in relation to cultural
theory, see Taylor 2001, chapter 4.
3. Ignacio, according to one report, denied he included this image on his page, claiming
4. Rosenzweig informed me of his researches on Ignacio and ‘‘Evil Bert’’ in an e-mail
of July 5, 2003. He provided me with the following references: Greg Miller, ‘‘Cyber-
culture: The Scene/The Webby Awards,’’ Los Angeles Times, March 9, 1998, D3; Peter
Hartlaub,‘‘BertandbinLadenPosterTiedtoS.F.Student,’’ SanFranciscoChronicle,Octo-
ber 12, 2001, A12; Gina Davidson, ‘‘Bert and Bin: How the Joke Went Too Far,’’ The
Scotsman, October 14, 2001, 3.
5. See theWeb page of Nikke Lindqvist (2001) at for compre-
hensive documents relating to the incident.
6. For a discussion of the problem of disappearing Web sites in relation to studying the
Evil Bert–bin Laden incident, see Rosenzweig 2003.
7. Forthosestillskepticalabouttheincident,asimilareventmightbehelpful.Areporter
for the bbc in Kabul submitted a story about a document found in a Taliban redoubt
left behind by retreating al-Qaeda forces. This document, also downloaded from the
Internet, outlined instructions for making a thermonuclear device. To the reporter’s
chagrin, however, the instructions proved to be a hoax from a humor newsletter en-
titled Annals of Improbable Research, humor that was lost not only on the Taliban and
al-Qaeda but also on the bbc reporter. ‘‘Taliban Thwarted by Irreproducible Result,’’
8. One of these is the noxious intensification of surveillance. See Lyon 2003.
9. The global encounter of cultures has produced some truly bizarre responses in the
West. The imposition of the burqa on women in Afghanistan is, in some feminist
circles, not the cause for critique of Afghanistan but an indication of the blindness
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