Monday, March 29, 2004

Dumb Mobs

I've been skeptical of any system that gives marginal groups influence beyond what their actual numbers suggest, but claims to be for the "good of us all." Howard Rheingold does not have any such reservations, proclaiming
I think there's a Darwinian process when you have a large number of people doing it. If 10 million people are publishing their own opinions instead of sitting slack-jawed in front of the tube, that's got to be healthier for the public sphere. The mass media have disempowered people from the process and made them feel disempowered.
I dunno--slack jaws in front of the TV seems better to me that slack minds chanting slogans. Politics is just a bad way to make decisions about society because any electoral result is an arbitrary artifact of whatever the election system happens to be, and this is true for all election systems.


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