The False Promise of WWW Enlightenment

Never before have so many people been connected together in an instantly responsive network through which memes can spread faster than natural viruses. But the notion that taking the whole world online would create a utopia of netizens, all equal in cyberspace, was always a fantasy—as much a delusion as Luther’s vision of a “priesthood of all believers.” The reality is that the global network has become a transmission mechanism for all kinds of manias and panics, just as the combination of printing and literacy temporarily increased the prevalence of millenarian sects and witch crazes. The cruelties of the Islamic State, or ISIS, seem less idiosyncratic when compared with those of some governments and sects in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The contamination of the public sphere with fake news today is less surprising when one remembers that the printing press disseminated books about magic as well as books about science.

Notes:

Folksonomies: networks enlightenment history

Taxonomies:
/art and entertainment/books and literature (0.571623)
/religion and spirituality/islam (0.256789)
/religion and spirituality (0.185422)

Keywords:
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Entities:
Luther:Person (0.765198 (:0.000000))

Concepts:
Printing press (0.949375): dbpedia_resource
Printing (0.596342): dbpedia_resource
Book (0.539529): dbpedia_resource
Protestant Reformation (0.514207): dbpedia_resource
Movable type (0.461092): dbpedia_resource
Martin Luther (0.455042): dbpedia_resource
Aristotle (0.447990): dbpedia_resource
Johannes Gutenberg (0.442768): dbpedia_resource

 The False Prophecy of Hyperconnection
Electronic/World Wide Web>Internet Article:  Ferguson, Niall (2017-08-15), The False Prophecy of Hyperconnection, Foreign Affairs, Retrieved on 2017-10-25
  • Source Material [www.foreignaffairs.com]
  • Folksonomies: history networks