Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Long Live King Mob

Bruce Shneier has a great piece on the court of public opinion. He says:
It’s time we recognize the court of public opinion for what it is — an alternative crowd-enabled system of justice. We need to start discussing its merits and flaws; we need to understand when it results in justice, and how it can be manipulated by the powerful. We also need to have a frank conversation about the failings of the traditional justice scheme, and why people are motivated to take their grievances to the public. Despite 24-hour PR firms and incident-response plans, this is a court where corporations and governments are at an inherent disadvantage. And because the weak will continue to run ahead of the powerful, those in power will prefer to use the more traditional mechanisms of government: police, courts, and laws.
There is nothing new about the mob, but when you look at the thicket of academics, journalists, non-Governmental activists, etc. it's unclear why Shneier says both corporations and governments are at an inherent disadvantage. It may simply be more accurate to notice that those who get good PR are strong, and those who do not aren't.

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