Friday 353

Politics, YouTube, and Foucault

Filed under: Politics, Society — zundel @ pm

Michel Foucault and our macaca future” by Julian Sanchez in Ars Technica 2008-12-19

Sanchez raises an interesting question: How will YouTube and such discipline politicians?

a growing bottom-up panopticon will have important—and not exclusively salutary—effects on our political life

Foucault’s idea that the act of observation—and indeed, the mere awareness that one might be observed at any given time—exerted a powerful psychological effect on the observed.

how we might characterize the implicit “aims and objectives” of a distributed Little Brother panopticon

from the comments:

Wasn’t there a similar worry that with the advent of 24/7 news networks like CNN that politicians would simply sanitize their every thought? As if politicians were somehow human and genuine to begin with. That quickly passed, and I think the same will happen here.

Since there is no oversight or accountability in user generated content the door is left open to distort and skew the facts for political gain.

For all the talk of how the internet is going to revolutionize politics for the better, it sometimes seems like it has only reinforced our short attention spans and cultivated our love for brief sound bytes.


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