Comments for:How do internet technologies reshape our view and practice of politics?
Chuck, you wrote:
"So it seems that the underlying question is one of whether the Internet will promote or preclude any particular sort of deliberation, and if so, how, and is this acceptable?"
The "how" is fundamental, thanks for adding it. There is the risk of control by the state, and the more insidious forms of warping by commercial providers of "free" (non-paying) forums (Yahoo, MSN, for instance).
In that, the "free as in freedom" software movement - and H2O for instance - play a very important civic role. Unfortunately, all too often, people and organisation involved in the defence of civic and human rights tend to brush the issue aside as "stuff for geeks".
I did too, when I first got on the internet. It took me a couple of years to underestand it wasn't so. I am still abysmally ignorant of tech. I wouldn't know where to start with the source code of this platform. But I've realised that the fact this code is available is most important.
Maybe conveying this to civic and human rights activists isn't a problem in the US, where tech culture is more advanced and more widespread. In Europe, it is.