BillSeitz:z2004-09-03-DavenportFaceMagEndConsumer links an essay (on http://www.spiked-online.com/Printable/0000000CA663.htm) on) the decline of conspicuous consumerism and the rise of celebrity culture.
It clearly seems to me, that this shift from obsession with inert stuff is actually towards an obsession with social relationships, but weirdly social relationships of others rather than your own. Consumers of celebrity are engaging in vicarious social connectivity. Admiring the connectivity of others from afar.
A new rant I made on TribeNet and my weblog : http://blahsploitation.blogspot.com/2005/06/tribe.html
Here's a blog all about the original social networking scene : http://socialrank.wordpress.com/
(No doubt, this scene gets it. Compare : LuxurySector)
See also :