Sunday, 28 September 2008
Paper has an ability to insert itself on to the street, to go in to circulation and emerge with an event like a protest, an act of violence, or even a regime change.
In the end all three men would fall and in the eye of short term history Bush, Olmert and Blair are failures if not mudersers. How much of the balance of public opinion was internet and how much was direct action where paper can be located.
I have written about this in I Sold You and You Sold Me. I argue that the internet has been ineffective in increasing democracy as some people had hoped. I wrote it last year and events since seem to have shown that government has little to fear from the internet globally.
The Republic of Avatars
The internet promotes participation in a simulation only isolating identities constructed there from political struggles.
The internet forms new identities and communities. More of the public is constructing identities through computer simulations and virtual communities [Turkle 288-299]. It is an open question how these simulated identities and cultures relate to the larger political context.
Baudrillard argued that electronic media creates only a simulation that does not reflect the social reality but rather is isolated from the economic, public, and social issues of what traditionally would be called reality. Baudrillard asserts that electronic media has no relation to truth [Ferguson 172-173] [Baudrillard 79-85]. Therefore these Internet identities do not reflect the interests of the person behind them, but are only simulations with no reference or meaning.
Democracy is a system of signs and images that aim to power relations. The project of democracy is to create an informed public and government via their consent. If this simulated reality created by the internet is utterly separated from truth and reality this effort not be promoted by the expansion of the internet, and actually compromised by it
Rober1236 Jua the Cyber Trekker of Second Life