Wednesday, April 06, 2005

What is driving network society?

I agree that we are now being towards network society. However, what is driving network society? Obviously, even in traditional societies, personal and social networks as a form of social capital functioned as important factors to contribute to solving personal matters and to driving social changes. Then, why does this contemporary society tend to go fast for network society? I think that this phenomenon relates to the increasing use of information and information flow. In this era of information society, social control and social change highly depend on information control. Therefore, I think that we need to think about network society with considering information society. Social network can be used for individual and community to serve self-purposive goal, but it very often can be employed by power elite to control society.


Aaron said...

I'm not convinced that we're becoming a network society -- I think we have always been one to a certain extent (and that society has always been primarily a network of networks). I think what's happening is that we're becoming more of an information society, and we're doing so primarily through networks. We're also doing so in a much more self-aware way than we've used networks in the past. We're thinking about issues of information flow and control (sometimes explicitly, sometimes implicitly) and because of that, we're seeing the networks more clearly than we have in the past.

Chris said...

I have found Castells to be very helpful on conceptualizing network society. In Internet Galaxie he talks about the phenomenon of networked individualism (as a social not psychological concept) and argues that the traditional notion of community was never a historical fact, just an ideal.