A Small World After All
A new book sheds light on how little of the world we see through our browsers
Digital Cosmopolitans in the Age of Connection
by Ethan Zuckerman
$26.95 List Price
At a recent conference on media reform, I found myself talking to a professional activist and technologist. He told me about some online images—customized for sharing on Facebook—that civilians in Syria had circulated to protest Bashar al-Assad’s violent crackdown on dissent in their country. The images were both powerful and deeply moving, he told me. “It’s like we are building a giant empathy machine,” he said, referring to the Internet. The effortless sharing of memes, he explained, was a crucial step toward a more peaceful world. In fact, he went so far as to insist that the invasion of Iraq would have been impossible today, given the ubiquity of social-media platforms.
He was such a pleasant and positive fellow that I felt a bit bad raining on his parade, so I resisted the urge to point out the innumerable
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