Slacktivism is like a First Kiss

You can’t make a baby by kissing. This metaphor sounds weird, but bear with me. You can’t make a baby by kissing just like you can’t end poverty or elect a president or gain civil rights by joining a Facebook group or tweeting or forwarding an SMS. But, like those first tentative gestures of affection,…

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The Four Freedoms of the Internet

[UPDATED] In his 1941 State of the Union address, a year before Pearl Harbor and the entry of the US into World War II, President Roosevelt presented the Four Freedoms: freedom of speech and express, freedom of religion, freedom from want, freedom from fear. They expressed a worldview diametrically opposed to the fascism and tyranny…

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The Data-Driven Democracy

We’ve seen how digital campaigns have helped citizen groups upset national power dynamics from Egypt’s Arab Spring to the USA’s Tea Party and Occupy. But can digital technology affect democracy at a more fundamental level? The following line from a Wired article on A/B testingintrigued me: Consensus, even democracy, has been replaced by pluralismresolved by…

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Can the Word “Slacktivism” be Reclaimed?

Can the word “slacktivism” be reclaimed? Personally, I’d prefer it to die an inglorious death, be replaced in the short-term with less cynical descriptive terms like “small digital action” or “online tactic” and later by a catchier term (that hasn’t been invented yet). However, some people, like the folks at Sortable who created the graphic…

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