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The Revolution That Wasn’t — Jen Schradie | Harvard University Press
"This surprising study of online political mobilization shows that money and organizational sophistication influence politics online as much as off, and casts doubt on the democratizing power of digital activism. The internet has been hailed as a leveling force that is reshaping activism. From the Arab Spring and Occupy Wall Street to Black Lives Matter and #MeToo, digital activism seemed cheap, fast, and open to all. Now this celebratory narrative finds itself competing with an increasingly sinister story as platforms like Facebook and Twitter—once the darlings of digital democracy—are on the defensive for their role in promoting fake news. While hashtag activism captures headlines, conservative digital activism is proving more effective on the ground. In this sharp-eyed and counterintuitive study, Jen Schradie shows how the web has become another weapon in the arsenal of the powerful. She zeroes in on workers’ rights advocacy in North Carolina and finds a case study with broad implications. North Carolina’s hard-right turn in the early 2010s should have alerted political analysts to the web’s antidemocratic potential: amid booming online organizing, one of the country’s most closely contested states elected the most conservative government in North Carolina’s history. The Revolution That Wasn’t identifies the reasons behind this previously undiagnosed digital-activism gap. Large hierarchical political organizations with professional staff can amplify their digital impact, while horizontally organized volunteer groups tend to be less effective at translating online goodwill into meaningful action. Not only does technology fail to level the playing field, it tilts it further, so that only the most sophisticated and well-funded players can compete."
book  publisher  social-media  internet  activism  resources  influence  propaganda 
10 weeks ago by tsuomela
The End of Forgetting — Kate Eichhorn | Harvard University Press
"Thanks to Facebook and Instagram, our childhoods have been captured and preserved online, never to go away. But what happens when we can’t leave our most embarrassing moments behind? Until recently, the awkward moments of growing up could be forgotten. But today we may be on the verge of losing the ability to leave our pasts behind. In The End of Forgetting, Kate Eichhorn explores what happens when images of our younger selves persist, often remaining just a click away. For today’s teenagers, many of whom spend hours each day posting on social media platforms, efforts to move beyond moments they regret face new and seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Unlike a high school yearbook or a shoebox full of old photos, the information that accumulates on social media is here to stay. What was once fleeting is now documented and tagged, always ready to surface and interrupt our future lives. Moreover, new innovations such as automated facial recognition also mean that the reappearance of our past is increasingly out of our control. Historically, growing up has been about moving on—achieving a safe distance from painful events that typically mark childhood and adolescence. But what happens when one remains tethered to the past? From the earliest days of the internet, critics have been concerned that it would endanger the innocence of childhood. The greater danger, Eichhorn warns, may ultimately be what happens when young adults find they are unable to distance themselves from their pasts. Rather than a childhood cut short by a premature loss of innocence, the real crisis of the digital age may be the specter of a childhood that can never be forgotten."
book  publisher  forgetting  memory  social-media 
12 weeks ago by tsuomela
Yes, It Was That Bad : Democracy Journal
"Network Propaganda: Manipulation, Disinformation, and Radicalization in American Politics By Yochai Benkler, Robert Faros, and Hal Roberts • Oxford University Press • 2018 • 472 pages • $27.95 Cyberwar: How Russian Hackers and Trolls Helped Elect a President By Kathleen Hall Jamieson • Oxford University Press • 2018 • 314 pages • $24.95"
books  review  election  2016  media-studies  social-media  propaganda  politics  communication 
march 2019 by tsuomela
Thieves of Experience: How Google and Facebook Corrupted Capitalism - Los Angeles Review of Books
"The Age of Surveillance Capitalism The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power By Shoshana Zuboff Published 01.15.2019 PublicAffairs 704 Pages"
book  review  internet  technology-effects  social-media  surveillance  business-model  capitalism 
january 2019 by tsuomela
The Fight for Our Eyeballs - Los Angeles Review of Books
"Stand Out of Our Light Freedom and Resistance in the Attention Economy By James Williams Published 05.31.2018 Cambridge University Press 144 Pages"
book  review  technology-critique  social-media  attention  business  advertising 
september 2018 by tsuomela
Mark Bernstein: Villainy
"If we have not yet achieved planetary super-villainy on the desktop, it may be feasible to fit it into a suburban office suite. Social media and Web science permit the modern villain to deploy traditional cruelties to great and surprising effect. Because the impact of villainous techniques is radically asymmetric, our fetid plots are difficult and costly to foil. "
social-media  paper  evil 
july 2018 by tsuomela
Facebook’s Innocence Project | The New Republic
"As Mark Zuckerberg prepares to face Congress, the social media network is selling itself as an idealistic force for good. "
facebook  social-media 
april 2018 by tsuomela
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