According to Andrew Potter, author of The Authenticity Hoax, it's simply the quest for authenticity itself, that causes the world to seem so unreal and phoney and therefore the quest is ultimately futile.
People can’t help themselves from competing for status (if the modern age was about the search for status via 'cool' the current paradigm is the search for status via 'authenticity'- organic, local, artisan etc) so when one removes oneself from the competition for status in the mainstream one just joins the competition for status in the counterculture.
Having said that, we haven't had a Malcolm quote in here for a while - and my sense is that if there can possibly be a difference between the authentic authentic and the commoditised authentic then it can be found here.
'There are two rules I've always tried to live by: turn left, if you're supposed to turn right; go through any door that you're not supposed to enter. It's the only way to fight your way through to any kind of authentic feeling in a world beset by fakery.'