Blog Response 5 – Laura Rojas

1. In this chapter from Lovink’s book Networks Without A Cause, he outlines the dynamic shift in social interaction online in the move from Web 1.0 to 2.0 that relies on “user generated content”. What do you envision Web 3.0 to be and what is the next level of user empowerment?

It’s hard to imagine a new form of Web, particularly because technological changes occur so rapidly that we hardly have time to get used to one standard when another one is already in place. I think once we get to “Web 3.0” territory, we won’t even recognize it as being any different from Web 2.0 until we step back and really analyze how far we’ve come.

That being said, I envision it to be moving faster than it already does. It will probably include high amounts of wearable tech integrating with the online world in order to make our lives the simplest, most convenient possible (because that’s what it’s all about, right?). Web 3.0 may not be as drastic as the lifestyle shown on Pixar’s Wall-E, but something close I think is definitely possible. My guess is future technology will be more immersive than ever, keeping us glued to our devices and perpetually online.

2. Throughout the article, Lovink argues for a form of criticism that is specific to the Internet—one that looks at theories about culture and society through the lens of networked technologies. Do you also believe that this is necessary to study as we move forward? Why or why not?

 I definitely think that studying the effect of networked technologies on society and culture, along with the latter through the former, is something important and necessary to do. Culture is heavily impacted by technology and society constantly shifts around within it like we discussed in class earlier. Our language, our preferences, our style and hobbies – all of these things are influenced by online content. The amount of influences we have is overwhelming: every webpage we visit shows us content from around the world, adding to the stockpile of viewed content we carry around in our brains.

In her book Dark Age Ahead, Jane Jacobs, a writer and activist who focused on the impact of urbanization, talks about the loss of intimate community that comes from living in big cities and the subsequent cultural hubs that arise out of this need. I think technology is having very similar effects on our society- new, digital communities are born from the lack of real, human contact in order to supplement these interactions to an extent. It’s really important that we keep these dialogs open and active in order to form a critical perspective within everyone who uses networked technologies in the hopes of forming critical citizens and nourishing a global culture which doesn’t let itself get taken over by these things, but rather uses them wisely, carefully.



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