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Friday, October 14, 2011

NPR & The Nation : The 99 Percent Rise Up

The communication technology (cellphones, hotspots, live cameras, etc.) made it possible ... the message is the right content ... but without the technology embodied in the internet and social media tools #OWS may never have gotten off the starting block ... we should have seen it coming.  Some may say they did and point to Arab Spring ... but as McLuhan would probably say it began happening years ago.

from Wikipedia
Hence in Understanding Media, McLuhan describes the "content" of a medium as a juicy piece of meat carried by the burglar to distract the watchdog of the mind.[4] This means that people tend to focus on the obvious, which is the content, to provide us valuable information, but in the process, we largely miss the structural changes in our affairs that are introduced subtly, or over long periods of time.[3] As society's values, norms and ways of doing things change because of the technology, it is then we realize the social implications of the medium. These range from cultural or religious issues and historical precedents, through interplay with existing conditions, to the secondary or tertiary effects in a cascade of interactions[3] that we are not aware of.

An unusually blunt piece for NPR  ... probably due to The Nation's influence as partner content (and John Nichols):
...Occupy Wall Street started small, took a beating from the cops and struggled for weeks to get the attention of the political class, the media and even its own natural allies. The only thing going for this unlikely intervention has been the pitch-perfect resonance of its founding premises. The American people understood Occupy Wall Street, and began to embrace its promise, long before the mandarins who presume to chart our national discourse noticed that everything was changing. That's because the generators of this movement—and it is a movement—have gotten three things right from the start:
The demands are right. The most comic complaint about Occupy Wall Street—not just from critics but even from some elite sympathizers—is that it lacks well-defined demands. In fact, the objection of the occupiers to a system of corporate domination and growing inequality, and their desire to change that system, makes a lot more sense to a lot more Americans than anything being said by politicians. Polling confirms this point: Barack Obama's approval ratings are dismal, but the approval ratings for the Republicans in Congress are dramatically worse. The American people desperately wanted this movement. That is proven not only by the polls but by the practical embrace of the Occupy Wall Street ethos in more than a thousand communities across the nation. Some are already occupying public spaces, others are marching and rallying. Beyond Wall Street, there will be more specific complaints, more adventurous alliances, more practical politics, but there's no reason why a diversity of issues and tactics cannot build the movement that was invited when the call to Occupy Wall Street was issued.

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