” The Post Information Age “: From Being Digital, by Nicholas Negroponte examines both the past and post information age. The post information age has become an era where everything is tailored made to fit your individual needs. But as we move forward into this tailored made digital world, we must not forget about those who are stuck in time with out access to the digital world. According to Negroponte, ” as we move toward such a digital world, an entire sector of the population will be or feel disenfranchised”. This is absolutely true for particular societies like those in Caribbean who are already disenfranchised and unable to be a part of the digital world mainly due to there class status.
In Stuart Hall’s Race Articulation and societies structured in Dominance, Hall examines the way in which societies are structured, but also how class plays a major role in that structure. Class status is one of the main reasons why certain societies are unable to move forward from the past into the present. Hall explains how the dominant culture has structured specific societies in a way that makes it impossible for the individuals of a specific class status to have access to all the luxury that are offered to us. Areas of the world which were once valued for their contribution to capitalist movement, have now been completely forgotten in the post information age.
For me, the connection between Negroponte and Hall is the way the in which specific societies are unable to take part in the digital world because of their class status. In many ways the information age has help to repeat the cycle of the haves and the have not’s. Those individual who do not have access to the digital world are simply being left behind as a direct result of their class status.
For many of us, being able to have access to the digital world is an essential part of our everyday lives. But as we move froward into this post information age, we can not forget about those who do not have access to the digital world. As a global society, we can not move forward unless the entire global community moves together. We can start by ensuring everyone has access to the digital world regardless of the class status. In order for everyone to be on the same playing field, we have to demand that everyone has access to the digital world. It is the only way that we can collectively move forward into this post information age.If we do not history will continue to repeat itself.
Jamal, I think that is exactly what needs to happen, the dominance structures that exist need to be broken down. I know that it will probably never happen but wouldn’t it be nice if it did?
I also really like your argument and I agree with Jamal, in that to accomplish what you propose would involve the deconstruction of the major structures of dominance that infest our world. Additionally, I would ask what does access mean? With the popularity of smart phones the internet is now widely available anywhere there is a cell tower. As we have seen during “the Arab Spring”, the revolt in the Ukraine and the protest in Brazil and Venezuela, this form of individual access to the web has been used greatly to broadcast information instantaneously before it could be filtered or block by an oppressive government.
In this “post information age” the internet has become just another system of dominance where is mostly used as a tool to propagate neo-liberals ideals, which are deeply vested in free market. Additionally, when the internet is controlled by a government is can be used simple as another tool of oppression. I would argue that to to properly address access to the internet we must first address general poverty, governmental tyranny, and access to education amongst others issues.
I really appreciate your argument for class limitations in regards to access to digital advancements. I found this to be possibly the most obvious of reasons for inequality and under-representation in cyberspace. I see your optimistic push to want to change this ongoing pattern and agree with Jamal that there are dominant structures in place that need to be broken down before this can occur. Acknowledging this structure is the first step, but moving forward, we need to change it first instead of just simply accepting it as is.
I appreciate your optimism and the push for unity in digital advancement expressed in your last paragraph. Hey, as someone born and raised in a region that had limited access to certain things, I couldn’t agree with you more. However, to attempt to do what you’re suggesting would mean breaking down the dominance structures that exist, as some say, “to keep the world in order”. It’s very interesting how we are aware of the role the class structure plays in our society but the majority of us have accepted it because it’s all that we know and to some degree, it’s how we make sense of where we belong and why we belong.