COME AND TALK FACEBOOK

~ Posted by Tim de Lisle, July 11th 2012

Intelligent Life is making its festival debut this weekend. We are joining another independent-minded glossy, Psychologies magazine, for a discussion about the pros and cons of Facebook. So if you’re in deepest Suffolk on Friday afternoon, and you need a break from all that live music, poetry and queueing for the Portaloo, come to the Literary Arena at 4.15.

Psychologies will be represented by Clare Longrigg, its deputy editor, and Lucy Beresford, the novelist who acts as its Agony Aunt and has assembled an alarming number of Twitter followers.  Intelligent Life doesn’t have an Agony Aunt, so it is being represented by me.

The talk was prompted by our recent feature on Facebook, written by Robert Lane Greene, one of our contributors in New York. At a time when other titles were going on about Facebook’s IPO and Mark Zuckerberg’s paper billions, Greene homed in on the silent revolution it has brought to our social lives. “Google made the internet navigable,” he wrote. “Apple made it portable, through intuitive, brilliant devices. Now Facebook has made it social, raising a generation that will never again expect things to be otherwise.”

Facebook is the biggest social phenomenon since the telephone. Do you feel it is mostly a good thing, bringing far-flung people together and adding to the sum of human interaction? Or is it a bad thing, chaining people to their screens and making them anxious about the party they weren’t invited to? Come and give it some welly.

Tim de Lisle is editor of Intelligent Life. He has written recently about the tennis player Andy Murray, the boxer Mary Kom, why Latin is the best language to learn and the future of the Guardian