Posted by: christinelsmith | August 5, 2009

Will New Media Save Democracy

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Will New Media Save Democracy discusses democracy as a mega mart versus democracy as a town hall. The mega mart model of democracy views blogging in a negative manner while the town hall model of democracy views blogging in a positive manner. The mega mart model of democracy believes that the first problem with blogs is that they aren’t original and they don’t produce new information. The second problem with blogs is that individuals read blogs that are similar to their preconceived political views. One blogger discussed “The kind of blogging where people are just reinforcing their prejudices and their ideologies and echoing each other, attacking the enemy”. The town hall model of democracy views the blogging world as a public forum in which judgments and opinions are debated. Opponents of the town hall model of democracy are more likely to be involved in political activism. They say that “Their online political activity has caused them to take action in their local communities”. They say that their participation in political forums has led them to join at least one political gathering or political protest. They believe that bloggers contribute to eyewitness reporting, rigorous investigation, and specialized research. They are able to fact check and reframe. They believe that blogging allows citizen participation by bringing a number of individuals and individual’s opinions to the table. In my opinion, blogs possess negative and positive aspects. Whether blogs have negative or positive effects on individuals depends on the kind of individuals that are consuming them. For some people, blogs contribute more to their biases and preconceived political views and for other people, blogs expose them to alternate insight and alternate opinion. Individuals should not actively seek out blogs that align with their interests and their political views. They need to explore the blogosphere. In my opinion, it is up to the individual whether blogs impact them negatively or positively.

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