Antiwar protests and the Internet

Doyle Saylor djsaylor at mindspring.com
Wed Jan 15 23:16:18 MST 2003


Greetings All,
Nick Fredman writes,
This reminded me of the glib journalistic tendency, taken up by both
postmodernist and "anti-capitalist" types, to assume new
technological forms will equate to new politics and new
organisational forms.

Doyle
Why not new organizational forms?  There is evidence for that, the Napster
clash with the old line music and movie industries strongly point at a shake
up in how media content is being managed.

The clear issue about leafletting, postering, stalls, etc is the general
cost effectiveness of a web site over plastering posters all over town.  You
can put fresher information on a web site than you can print up in a
leaflet.  You can access a broader range of information via the internet.
You aren't tied to a specific geographic region as you suggest above in
Melbourne, so that you are making your case to a global community on this
list.  All this is quite a bit different from how it was necessary to
organize before.  Most major newspapers now sponsor forums for discussion,
so the way newspapers were organized is being altered.

I would point out that while postmodernist may argue for new organizational
forms, reds have always been willing to use media to great advantage where
it served the working class needs.  There is nothing to stop reds from
taking advantage of the tools available to organize the working class.

I would summarize that the most important element different now from then is
the ability to write (with pictures) to an audience that is not
geographically tied together.  This allows us to create a common view and
communal system that was not possible thirty years ago.  There has been all
along telephones for the last hundred years, but one has to admit that
telephones did not aggregate many voices at once as the internet does.  The
telephone was at best a means for a small group to meet.  A list can serve
upwards of 2 millions subscribers at once as Slash Dot Com demonstrates.
thanks,
Doyle Saylor



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