Chapter 9/ Epilogue & Articles

Shirky starts off chapter 9 with the general statement, “what a small world!”. He explains that through technology we are able to create small social topics within groups. He mentions FOAF (friend-of-a-friend) which opens doors to meeting new people. The point of that idea is that between all the connections that are available there is a complex participation that allows individuals to share big or small events that have occurred around the world. In the Epilogue he uses the example of the earthquake that occurred in China in 2008 and how fast the news spread, not through news casts but through Twitter and QQ (social network in China).

The article of Arab Spring talks about the the creation of Takrit, a social network used by students, teachers, unionist, etc. and how it contributed to making strategies that started riots. This relates to Shirky’s discussion because it talks about how social media can help people communicate plans and operations within their own interest groups. Something that the article added which is something Shirky doesn’t really mention is the availability of technology. At one point there was a certain group that didn’t have the technology needed to be part of the plan. We are provided we all the technologies needed but sometimes we forget that not everyone has that privilege and so that was something that Shirky doesn’t mention in the reading.

Morozov’s article explained that social networks aren’t really what causes the revolutionaries. Yes it is the go to place when you want to share your opinion but his last sentence basically explains what needs to be done “today’s cyber-utopians need to log off their Facebook accounts and try a little harder.” I think Morozov just wanted to prove the point that people needed to be directly involved. Technology and social media does influence a lot of people and their opinions but it’s not a physical act, just technological.

The article that I found is titled “Arab Spring: Did social media really spark revolution?”. This article is written by Rob Lever and he basically talks about other people and their opinions on how social media contributed to the Arab Spring uprising. In his article he mentions one of his colleagues, Philip Howard, who wrote in his book that digital media was “consistently one of the most important sufficient and necessary conditions” used for the Arab Spring movements. The article basically explains how the use of technology was needed to deliver information to anyone part of the movement.

Article: http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=57426

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2 thoughts on “Chapter 9/ Epilogue & Articles

  1. I agree with your statement the Morozov believe people need to be directly involved, but i believe why is supported by him talking about how inaccurate and mutated news from social media becomes more than the main point being its not a physical act. With Morozov, the main point is how what you here from social media may not be what is actually going on and may not be historically correct to what is actually going on. How people are to quick to assume with social media and how what is being posted, could just be an individuals biased view and not actually supported.

  2. I do agree with your statement about how people do need to be directly involved but I cant help but question it at the same time seeing as being “directly involved” doesn’t necessarily provide a clear meaning in my opinion, I say this because the word “direct” is co-dependent on uncertain variables

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