[iDC] How does social media educate?

Ulises arsalaan1-idc at yahoo.com
Sun Feb 11 15:12:47 EST 2007


I guess whether we are 'bowling alone' or 'going to church en masse' depends on which source of data you wish to cite --which is why all these calls for "more empirical data!" are a bit of wishful thinking, I fear. For instance, here's a bit of hard data: the latest US census shows that 25% of the nation's households (27.2 million) consist of just one person, compared to 10% in 1950. Clearly, there are trends which suggest that a section of society is choosing to do some things more by themselves (bowling? forming a household?) and others through emerging social practices (attending mega churches? joining online networks?). 

At the same time, I am not sure that our understanding of networked individualism will benefit by expanding the definition of technology so much as to encompass religion. I do agree,  however, that comparisons to older media, such as cable television, might be productive, although I am sure they have their limits. To answer your question: No, I am not familiar with earlier discourses around cable television (I wasn't here around that time). If what we are saying here seems to reiterate some of that, it is perhaps because it merits being said again in a new context. I, for one, would appreciate a short summary of what --in your opinion-- is the overlap between cable and social media.



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