Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Social Justice Through Technology

The question this week’s readings raised in my mind was how social inequality is reduced by social media and technology, rather than made more visible.  In my experiences with social media, it seems to break down social divisions.  More people are communicating with each other than ever before and this number will continue to rise.  Given this rising rate of communication, it would be logical to say more communication will promote learning of new cultures and lead to new acceptance and respect of other’s views.  This communication would not be possible without technology.

In my opinion, having the ability to communicate with anyone else around the world without a doubt reduces social divisions and inequality.  Without technology, the Internet, and social media, many social boundaries would still exist today.  By sharing your thoughts with others, people can quickly learn new perspectives, ideas, and ways of life which can aid in the removal of social inequality.



  1. Nicholas,
    I agree that it would seem "logical" that the Internet and Social networking sites have enabled us to communicate more with all types of people and cultures around the world, and that "social media..[should] break down social divisions" as you mention. Danah Boyd's concept of "homophily" and how it applies to social networking sites does seem to be in contrast to your comments however. She mentions that in fact, people tend to segregate themselves by groups that they belong to, however unitentionally, on these sites. As she states, "Structurally, social networks are driven by homophily even when there are individual exceptions." How do you feel about this concept? Do you think it is accurate?

  2. I do see the above idea of homophily to be accurate. The fact that diversity exists on social media platforms does not necessarily mean that these different people, or groups of people, will actually interact. In a way, it's like cliques in school. Surely the Facebooks of the world make it easier for different cliques to interact with one another, but doesn't provide them with any new reasons to do so. But, the increased opportunity for interaction is still a benefit.