Re: [-empyre-] Self-programmable media activism; just cheap talk?
On Nov 29, 2005, at 1:24 PM, Alex Killough wrote:
To me this is where the virtual community is a relevant alternative,
for the following reasons:
I can get a lot more people to my website than I can to Dolores Park
(protest central for SF).
I don't need some kind of song and dance routine by a politically
inclined performer to attract an audience.
Look, 62- 68's outcome is a wash, and I don't think that this is the
most relevent moment for Robby's conversation is we only use the US as
a context (social movements outside of US were often successfull in
gaining real social gains after that period. For me 68 in America
represents the rise of a radical individualism that appears first as
"radical chic". I would look more towards kick-ass unions of the
progressive era from the 1890's until the late 1930's.) But that said,
you don't force change by blogging. Power changes when confronted by
resistance... meaning (to quote Mario Savio) that the wheels of the
machine can no longer turn.
While I agree with what you see as the discursive qualities of the
internet (and face to face meetings with folks of like minds or focus)
I don't think calling something an "alternative" is productive. I would
see these discursive sites as adjuncts... things that help and are
constitutive of a wider movement.
And agreed, protest cultural forms can be a drag. But then again, so is
many comercials on TV. What should be at stake in a Dolores Park
gathering and then march is a manifestation, and sometimes a stopping
the wheels... as in the real world shut down of downtown sf at the
start of the most recent war. Money is lost. Face-to-face cross
ideological dialogue occurs.
You may have noticed that meat-space is pretty much entirely
commodified, including the protest space, which even in its most
'radical' requires the purchase, somewhere along the way, of black
hoodies (or equivalent 'protester-chic' garb), bricks, and liquor
bottles. And probably escape mechanisms, food,
places to hide, etc.
Yeah, meat space is almost entirely commodified. Big deal. As previous
threads of this conversations were getting at... some items and
concept's commodifications ARE BENEFICIAL. Some of it is neither good
nor bad. Yes, some protest is probably psychological escape, but then
again, so is some web activity.
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