The Freedom Driving Mass Amateurization (ch5/7)

Throughout “Here Comes Everybody”, Clay Shirky expresses the positivity and possibilities of this new technological era. Gathering and spreading information is a benefit we may take advantage of at some points. Yet the easier it is to speak freely and spread ideas, the easier it is to spread freedom and knowledge. Shirky believes social networks and technology can be used as political tools as well. “Any tool that improves shared awareness or group coordination can be used for political means because it is freedom.” In chapters five and seven, Clay stresses the importance of coordination and the use the cyber community to form peace meetings and protests. He talks of protests in Germany and recent government and power changes from the use of social networks and group gathering. Social change can progress if the use of technology is used correctly. Management or the lack of it, is also a concept Shirky implements in his writing. With “flexibility of roles,” more work can be accomplished. Spontaneous division of labor with small groups can now accomplish what larger groups with additional oversight can. Overall, technology is a positive force for the ambitious author. It is a social, political and diverse tool we should continue to work with.

In “Small Change” Malcolm Gladwell discusses the power of pure human communication. He believes the excessive use of technology is a mere way to tie loose ends together. “The platforms of social media are built around weak ties.” With a strong sense of right, he discusses the civil rights movement in North Carolina. In the 1960′s 4 college students sit in Greensboro and fought for racial segregation and human rights. Gladwell makes a point here where he states that none of these political uprisings could have happened with the help of technology. At this point in American history the true commitment and power of word gave the hundreds of protesters the strength to change social rights. In this situation, i feel Shirky would state the protests could have been more efficient with the use of technology. With better organizing and planning of dangerous ambushes, the civil rights movement could have been resolved quicker and possibly less costly.”But it is simply a form of organizing which favors the weak-tie connections that give us access to information over the strong-tie connections that actually help us preserver in times of danger.” Malcolm believes Clay Shirky over emphasizes the positives of technology and argues the integrity of the bonds and habits of technological networking and evolution. Small changes, signifies the lack of progress Malcolm finds with our next generation. Without true social interaction and eye to eye conversations with people how can we as people change the future?


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