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  • Clive 4:46 pm on January 12, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: , , dystopian, ,   

    Prometheus Wired – Darin Barney 

    ‘a meditation upon the economic, ontological,
    and political conditions necessary for democratic self-government, the failure of the modern
    technological world to meet those conditions, and the likelihood that networks, as a technology,
    will perpetuate rather than alleviate that failure (268).’

    Barney’s explicit goal is to debunk those who have been preaching about the innately prodemocratic, nonhierarchical, chaotic infrastructure of the Internet. He contends that the new computer networks are producing greater alienation among workers and greater mastery over citizens.

    The result of this new information and communication technology has not been to free and  empower ordinary people but to tighten the screws and make their global economic and political rulers richer and less visible than ever before.

    Insofar as they bolster the already formidable control of capital over the means of power, computer networks are an essentially conservative, not revolutionary, technology—conservative, that is, of the prevailing liberal and capitalist order (p. 188).

    If citizens struggle to gain power in the capitalist or quasi-capitalist societies they are presently living in how are they likely to gain more with a network technology that further alienates and disaggregates them?

    The control mechanism at the hear of network technology is for Barney anathema to democracy.

    It’s a powerful treatise especially in its use of Heidegger and Marx to marshall arguments from other technological periods and political philosophy. The same holds true today according to Barney but simply to perfect capitalism in a friction-free way.

    The question to be asked of his thesis though is whether, in the light of this perfection of capitalism, democracy can renew itself and propose new forms that can harness the potential for a more positive view of communication technologies to enhance democratic processes. Despite all the activism/hacktivism and online experimentation however, the jury is still out.

  • Clive 7:56 pm on September 11, 2008 Permalink
    Tags: dystopian,   

    Optimists and Pessimists on the Net 

    Over the past year a number of books have been published exploring various phenomena concerning the rise of ubiquitous computing. I’ve read a number of them. Whilst I don’t consider the debate to be an either or or simplification there is some use in this article which categorises those publications in terms of whether their views of the rise of the net are positive or negative. What book would I write? Well certainly one which looks at a global perspective rather than an Euro/US focus which seems to be one of the flaws of much of the writing I come across on the subject. And for balance, though not necessarily the most up-to-date, it’s difficult to beat Manuel Castells The Internet Galaxy.

  • Clive 10:22 pm on August 6, 2008 Permalink
    Tags: cybernationalism, dystopian   

    Cybernationalism – hate on the net 

    Cyber-nationalism | The brave new world of e-hatred | Economist.com

    The power of a nationalist message can be amplified with blogs, online maps and text messaging; and as a campaign migrates from medium to medium, fresh layers of falsehood can be created. During the crisis that engulfed Kenya earlier this year, for example, it was often blog posts and mobile-phone messages that gave the signal for fresh attacks. Participants in recent anti-American marches in South Korea were mobilised by online petitions, forums and blogs, some of which promoted a crazy theory about Koreans having a genetic vulnerability to mad-cow disease.

  • Clive 9:15 pm on December 8, 2007 Permalink |
    Tags: dystopian   

    The internet – luogi comuni 

    1. the internet is dangerous
    2. the web is difficult
    3. the internet is for porn
    4. the internet is for deviants
    5. the web is not trustworthy
    6. the internet is isolating/alienating
    7. the internet doesn’t exist – it’s virtual

    see: http://blip.tv/file/497941

  • Clive 12:44 pm on July 30, 2007 Permalink |
    Tags: dystopian,   

    More scare stories from Facebook 

    Dangers of Social-Networking Sites – Kaplan College Guide – MSNBC.com

    Powered by ScribeFire.

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