MIT 1200 Lecture 9: New Media, New War?

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Media, Information and Technoculture
Media, Information and Technoculture 3214F/G
Sharon Sliwinski

MIT 1200 Lecture “New Media, New War?” March 23, 2011 New Media, New War? - The politics of friendship: Exhibit A - “The World of Facebook” - Facebook is structured around friendship. - The politics of friendship: Exhibit B - Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, or Death (French Revolution) - The politics of friendship: Exhibit C - We align with certain countries and make other countries our enemies. - Local Example: Our relationship with Queen’s - What is the function of media in society? - What is the function of “new media”? How does it differ from “old media” (newspapers, radio, film, etc.) Facebook - This kind of friendship works more on the fraternity model. Exclusive clubs. - It’s was not a free and open society at the beginning; only Harvard students could join. - You don’t have a choice of how you organize your profile. - There’s a paranoia and anxiety over whether Facebook’s privacy controls can be trusted. - Tension over exposure and secrecy, publicity and privacy - Asking to be advertised to - Everything you do online is linked via Facebook. Facebook is now the world of your online life. - The newsfeed is like a room of chattering acquaintances, but this isn’t the same as having a conversation. - What are the differences between sharing your life online or sharing it with a friend? - Intimacy is inter-subjective; at least two minds engaging each other, it requires more than one person. - Can Facebook have the capacity for this kind of interaction, or is it only the intimacy of one, you with your technology? - Has Facebook degraded friendship? - Facebook asks you to reduce yourself so that you can be represented through a computer system. - Information systems under-represent reality. There’s a gap between what it feels like to be a person and what it feels like to be a profile. - Loss of the richness of what it means to be a self. War - What is the function of media in times of war? - Sue Halpern article “World of War” - We can’t talk about war without talking about the representation of it. - Her thesis: The wars that have taken place since 9/11 are wars we do not want to see. - How does media function in times of war? Two approaches - 1. Lying and Politics. Politics in the modern age is not about striving towards truth but the opposite. Politics is about lying. The public realm is not a realm of trut
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