vanevery + political   44

Technology and Revolution
CONTEXT

Starting in the 1970s, information technology was introduced into production and many other aspects of our society. It transformed countless social functions, including work as it replaced the industrial working class as the primary motor of commodity production and eliminated this group of people who had their hands on capitalism's means of production. For all practical purposes, what was traditionally called "the proletariat" disappeared as a social force. This was critical to the Left of that period because the strategy the Left had either embraced or debated was centered on working class organization at the "point of production". The Left was left without a cohesive strategy.
We have never gotten over that loss. The entire history of the Left in many of the economically powerful countries of the world since the 1970s has been response and resistance to various oppressions but very little vision of the future and almost none of a strategy to get there. As a result, despite great success in some of these struggles, our situation as a world has deteriorated consistently.
In the midst of that deterioration, we confront a growing fascist movement world-wide: the traditional answer by capitalism to crisis. It has now taken government authority in the U.S. and, aside from increased surveillance and abuse of this technology, we can expect an increased attack on our ability to communicate and the technology we use to do that.
And yet, because of information technology, our movement has never been more capable of rapid communications and response organizing. Our influence is broadening all the time. Our ability to deliver our message quickly and comprehensively has never been greater.
And technology transformed us in another important way: for the first time, our ability to create a society we want surpasses our imagination of what kind of society that can be. For the first time in human history, we can realize more than we can imagine and the struggle is to expand, not our capabilities, but our imaginations.
The priority of the movement in this country is to start developing a strategy for revolution that can unify us or at least serve as the source of debate. Because of the key role technology has played in all these developments, that strategy for revolution must include an approach to technology.
Logically, a revolutionary program should include the "reconquest of technology" and that, in and of itself, is a huge undertaking that can only be accomplished inside a larger, more inconclusive strategy. It's also not possible to elaborate without intense and large-scaled convergence and conversation.
We at May First/People Link are a technology organization of the Left and we feel a particular responsibility to contribute to our movement's addressing of these issues.
technology  society  political  left  phd  politics  movements  activism  labor 
may 2017 by vanevery
Study: Breitbart-led right-wing media ecosystem altered broader media agenda - Columbia Journalism Review
Our own study of over 1.25 million stories published online between April 1, 2015 and Election Day shows that a right-wing media network anchored around Breitbart developed as a distinct and insulated media system, using social media as a backbone to transmit a hyper-partisan perspective to the world. This pro-Trump media sphere appears to have not only successfully set the agenda for the conservative media sphere, but also strongly influenced the broader media agenda, in particular coverage of Hillary Clinton.

While concerns about political and media polarization online are longstanding, our study suggests that polarization was asymmetric. Pro-Clinton audiences were highly attentive to traditional media outlets, which continued to be the most prominent outlets across the public sphere, alongside more left-oriented online sites. But pro-Trump audiences paid the majority of their attention to polarized outlets that have developed recently, many of them only since the 2008 election season.

Attacks on the integrity and professionalism of opposing media were also a central theme of right-wing media. Rather than “fake news” in the sense of wholly fabricated falsities, many of the most-shared stories can more accurately be understood as disinformation: the purposeful construction of true or partly true bits of information into a message that is, at its core, misleading. Over the course of the election, this turned the right-wing media system into an internally coherent, relatively insulated knowledge community, reinforcing the shared worldview of readers and shielding them from journalism that challenged it. The prevalence of such material has created an environment in which the President can tell supporters about events in Sweden that never happened, or a presidential advisor can reference a non-existent “Bowling Green massacre.”
media  twitter  trump  election  election2016  political  bubble 
march 2017 by vanevery
History tells us what will happen next with Brexit & Trump — Medium
What can we do? Well, again, looking back, probably not much. The liberal intellectuals are always in the minority. See Clay Shirky’s Twitter Storm on this point. The people who see that open societies, being nice to other people, not being racist, not fighting wars, is a better way to live, they generally end up losing these fights. They don’t fight dirty. They are terrible at appealing to the populace. They are less violent, so end up in prisons, camps, and graves. We need to beware not to become divided (see: Labour party), we need to avoid getting lost in arguing through facts and logic, and counter the populist messages of passion and anger with our own similar messages. We need to understand and use social media. We need to harness a different fear. Fear of another World War nearly stopped World War 2, but didn’t. We need to avoid our own echo chambers. Trump and Putin supporters don’t read the Guardian, so writing there is just reassuring our friends. We need to find a way to bridge from our closed groups to other closed groups, try to cross the ever widening social divides.
politics  political  brexit  trump  cycle  clayshiky  anger  history  war  populism 
july 2016 by vanevery
Megaupload Founder Goes From Arrest to Cult Hero - NYTimes.com
“Two helicopters and 76 heavily armed officers to arrest a man alleged of copyright crimes — think about that,” he wrote. “Hollywood is importing their movie scripts into the real world and sends armed forces to protect their outdated business model.”
piracy  legal  political  hollywood  newzealand  megaupload  kimdotcom 
july 2012 by vanevery
Internet censorship extending to Australia - International Business Times
One current concern is that political comments made on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter may soon be regulated by the government too.
censorship  regulation  internet  australia  anonymous  political  freespeech 
february 2010 by vanevery
Global Voices Online » Mozambique: Riot organized via SMS is covered by bloggers
The protest today had an innovation. It was convened through sms and included strong criticism of the FRELIMO's government: “People are suffering; ministers, parliamentarians and other dignitaries' children don't travel on chapas and they are expensive.
sms  mobilemedia  political  politics  protest  riot  strike  economics 
february 2008 by vanevery

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