“Digital” is one half of this very important cultural change we’re living through in 2016, but “networked” is very much the other half. As I mentioned briefly in class, if we only had digital (numerically represented, modular, automated, and variable) media as we essentially did in the late 80s and early 90s, we would see considerably cultural change. But things really kick into a higher gear in the mid-90s with the advent of the world wide web, a networked platform on which we can all take up virtual residence. We need to consider that aspect of these new media we’re encountering as well as the digital.
To that end, please take a look at:
- Yochai Benkler, “A Moment of Opportunity and Challenge” from The Wealth of Networks; you only need to read the first half or so (stop at the section titled “Four Methodological Comments”)
- Clay Shirky, “Publish Then Filter” from Here Comes Everybody.
- Anil Dash, “The lost infrastructure of social media.“
- Explore the Guardian.uk webtool, “7 Digital Deadly Sins“
As you do, consider the impact of using digital and electronic means to virtually link together all these devices (computers, phones, tablets, and others). What changes when we have an always-on connection to anyone else with an internet or cellular connection? How do we communicate with one another differently? What “things” will we have to “rethink” (to use Michael Wesch’s terms) as a consequence of this new medium’s networked affordances?