The Window of Disruption Theory
The democratic potential of new media resides not in the technologies themselves, but in their disruptive force.
“Whatever democratic potentialities may reside in new media inhere not in the technologies themselves but in their disruptive force; whether those democratic potentialities will endure depends on the precise ways in which new media are domesticated.”
This disruptive force is neutralized as traditional gatekeepers assert control over and restrict these technologies
“New media used — but not controlled – by youth have typically provided only temporary access to the public sphere for political and cultural expression before adult gatekeepers foreclosed these opportunities.” (Light p38 FVTI) … “the youth who used media technologies but did not control media systems found traditional gatekeeping authorities, all adults, eager to assert control over and restrict these technologies’ future use” (54)
See also The Master Switch
Traditionally, the owners of voice-enabling platforms exert control over the discourse that flows there.
Consent of the Networked, also Light: “Change in postal laws in the 1870s, however, which raised rates for amateur publishers, led to a drop-off in circulation as many young people found the cost of sending out their periodicals to be prohibitively high.”
Parallels to net neutrality battles: “Many young people were drawn to wireless radio for the potential freedom it supplied…The loss of spectrum use following the Titanic disaster in the early 1910s prompted their major political action: writing letters to the mass media and testifying before Congress to call for amateurs rather than government or businesses to control the spectrum. These efforts were to no avail.” (FVTI 45)
“Questions about media policy (for example the design of media systems) that generally resolve in favor of government or corporate interests” FVTI Allen and Light, 2013
Tweet-length annotated Bibliography:
What it is / Author / Title / Year / Link if available