Liberated Technology: Inside Emancipatory Communication Activism
Stefania Milan (2016). Liberated Technology. In Civic Media. Technology, Design, Practice, edited by Gordon and Mihailidis, MIT Press, pp. 107-124
14 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2016
Date Written: January 7, 2016
This paper connects the emergence and flourishing of civil media with the global struggle for social justice. It situates civic media in the framework of emancipatory communication activism, defined as the realm of grassroots sociotechnical practices that challenge the dominant powers in the contemporary mediascape. It offers an historical perspective on the emergence and evolution of forms of civil media over time, from miners’ radio stations in Latin America to present-day ‘liberation technology’ projects. It illuminates the micro-sociological processes that sustain civil media and the complex relations with their communities of reference. It articulates the connection between the micro and local dimension of civil media and the transnational perspective of mobilization and exchange around issues of media democracy, citizenship, and participation. Finally, it connects the global mobilization around civil media to contemporary challenges like surveillance, corporatization and the role of the industry in the post-Snowden area.
Keywords: civic media, emancipatory communication activism, social justice, social movements, participation
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