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Digital Disconnect

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Xin Liang

on 26 November 2013

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Transcript of Digital Disconnect

Major publications
Digital Disconnect
Contemporary assessment of the Internet needs to be situated within the framework of political economy
Robert W. McChesney
co-founder of Free Press, a national media reform organization
Robert W. McChesney
concentrates on the history and political economy of communication
Robert W. McChesney
Digital Disconnect
How capitalism is turning the Internet against democracy
Robert W. McChesney
professor at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
the Gutgsell Endowed Professor in the department of communication
the role of media in democratic and capitalist societies
relationship of media systems and structures to effective self-governance
Free Press: devoted to changing media and technology policies
strengthen democracy and promote public interest
affordable and universal Internet access
diverse media ownership, public media and investigative journalism
Nichols, John and Robert W. McChesney.
Dollarocracy: How the Money-and Media Election Complex is Destroying America. New York: Nation Books, 2013
McChesney, Robert W. and John Nichols.
The Death and Life of American Journalism: The Media Revolution that Will Begin the World Again.
New York:Nation Books, 2010
In a nutshell
Digital technology has no superpower over capitalism
There remains a long way to go for the Internet to actually contribute to ease inequalities
Chapter 1 What is the elephant in the room?
The Internet has seemingly colonized and transformed everything in its path. (p.2)
Internet literature: celebrants & Skeptics
A fatal flaw of both camps: ignorance about capitalism and underappreciation of how capitalism dominates social life
Chapter 2 Does capitalism equal democracy?
political - economy 101 - a historical perspective of capitalism
Chapter 3 How can the political economy of communication help us understand the Internet?
public sphere - Habermas
critical junctures of media and communication
Chapter 4 The Internet and capitalism I: Where dinosaurs roam?
The Internet in direct conflict with hierarchical capitalist powers
Chapter 5 The Internet and capitalism II: Empire of the senseless?
The use of the Internet by government, national security and military agencies
Chapter 6 Journalism is dead! Long live journalism?
The Internet has taken the economic basis away from commercial journalism
Solution to the problem: to recognize that journalism is for the public good
The market is not the solution; no matter how fantastic the technologies are
Chapter 7 Revolution in the digital revolution?
Conclusion: the Internet and the broader digital revolution are not inexorably determined by technology; they are shaped by how society elects to develop them. Reciprocally, our chosen way of development will shape us and our society. (p.216)
Suggesting reforms that we need to consider
Evidence & Examples
Advertising, PR, copyrights, patents
Apple, Google, Facebook
Pew Research Center
Data from business and trade press, investment analysts
Full transcript