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iamthemob's avatar

Is fluther an example of globalization (3.0)

Asked by iamthemob (17147points) November 6th, 2010

Thomas Friedman breaks globalization down to three main phases, driven by different forces. In simplest terms, the first was driven by empires (conquering foreign lands to create trade routes), the second was driven by companies (developing as well as exploiting foreign markets), and the third is driven by the global knowledge network – in essence, us.

It seems one of the goals of fluther is to attract new members to add knowledge and address issues with diverse views – and to improve the way it does so. With the Meta section, we often offer suggestions for improvement, and reasons why x or y wouldn’t work – essentially, doing the market research for fluther itself. This in turn makes the way we share information here better for us.

So – is fluther globalization 3.0? And if so…how awesome is that? ;-)

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28 Answers

flutherother's avatar

Of course, distance means nothing to the Internet and Fluther is open to everyone and anyone wherever they are in the world. There is a diversity of opinion here but it does not represent everyone. There aren’t many Chinese or Indian people here for example, or any of the really poor people of the world. You won’t find many Muslims or Hindus either. I don’t know why that should be but that is the way it is.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Our Vision for Fluther
When Andrew and I [Ben] started Fluther over three years ago, we had a clear vision: we wanted to help people solve problems, in real-time, by matching questions to the right people. Our goal: be the best place to ask a question.

Looking at Fluther today, it’s remarkably close to what we envisioned. There are tons of smart people answering and helping tons of other smart people. It has also evolved in many ways we didn’t foresee, and we’ve tried to adapt it organically according to the community’s needs.

I’d consider that Globalization 3.0

mammal's avatar

i sincerely hope that Fluther isn’t following in the footsteps of Imperialism and Capitalism.

iamthemob's avatar

@mammal – imperialism and capitalism were necessary precursors to 3.0 – 3.0 is inherently democratic as the technology transcends any need to have access to a government or corporation (or at least have one of your own) in order to share communications globally.

mammal's avatar

@iamthemob sounds more like technology as usurper of culture and diversity.

HungryGuy's avatar

The whole Web is globalization (excluding certain xenophobic countries like China that limit their people’s internet access to the rest of the world).

mammal's avatar

@iamthemob technology seems to be replacing cultural diversity throughout the world. Technology is dismantiing culture, piece by piece, country by country, wouldn’t you say?

iamthemob's avatar

@mammal – not at all. There’s nothing to indicate that there’s less cultural diversity because of communication technology advances in recent years – but I think a deeper answer depends on what you mean by technology in this case.

Vincentt's avatar

The ratio Americans:Non-Americans is way too skewed for me to consider Fluther “globalized”...

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@mammal @iamthemob You’re having an interesting conversation because I kind of agree with both of you but am leaning more to agreeing with @mammal – inasmuch as technology is the third portion of Friedman’s paradigm, it is: 1) only moving certain people forward who have very specific access 2) it gives technology more value than other means of cultural interaction.

iamthemob's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – the infrastructure necessary for cellular and wireless communication, however, doesn’t require the hard-wiring of communications in the past – so developing countries are getting majority cell phone access before they get majority phone access. Twitter helped to balance the journalistic coverage of elections in Iran, showing that the benefit is extending to the democratization of some of the most oppressive regimes. Additionally, the Iran example shows how the diversity of opinions in nations many think all have a certain agenda can be exposed to a more general public.

Agreed, the access isn’t universal – but it’s working to it. Also, I don’t know that privileging one form of cultural interaction is an inherently negative thing…

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@iamthemob Any privileging is an inherently negative thing to me..but I’m a postmodernist.

iamthemob's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – then of course privilege is important to recognize, but it doesn’t devalue the thing as privilege is dynamic, position dependent, and shifting.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@iamthemob I’m not an anti-technology nut but I do not worship it either…I see value in it, I see it bringing information (which I value above a lot of things) to people who’d never see it otherwise…but @mammal there is decreasing cultural diversity because of globalization and technology is part of it all.

iamthemob's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – it’s funny, but I think that the Friedman paradigm regarding globalization 3.0 is comparable to third-wave feminism – in essence, the third wave of globalization is a product of corporate technological and consumer development, and a reaction against the failure of that development to actually democratize the resources it was using – whereas the third wave of feminism was a similar diversification and reaction against the almost universally white and privileged position of the second wave in it’s attempt to speak for all women.

Both are recognition of diversity against something that promised individual development, but resulted in many ways in new privileges and homogenization.

I see it not as a de-diversification force, but rather a synthesis of culture – exposure to more and more information means that we see more of each other – we’re the ones using it, after all – we aren’t subject to government or corporate barriers in the same manner any more.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@iamthemob There are a lot of positives but loss, as well – this is all inevitable and I get that but it is also inevitable that people knowing how to plug in, technologically, are considered more advanced than those who have purposely never touched a computer screen. And please 3rd wave feminism..way cooler than anything Friedman could come up with.

notdan's avatar

@iamthemob I think you’re right on the spot. Globalization is a synthesis of culture. Really, a tool to generate new culture and a measure of how fast we can change, and therefore develop and create.

I think Friedman’s interpretation is already dated. He’s essentially surveyed a rapidly developing wave, but missed innovative insight about where it’s heading. “way cooler than anything Friedman could come up with” is right.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

The technologically advanced are the people who consider it advanced to be technologically advanced. There is however, a resurgence of the Shaman, the Alchemist, and the Psychedelic community that does not consider culture to be our friend, nor technology to be the most advanced pursuit of the human endeavor.

iamthemob's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies – how is a community different from a culture?

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Typically, the former builds the latter. And as long as it continues to do so, all is well with humanity. But more often than not, a deviant mutation arises in the former, wishing to halt the building process of the latter, claiming it at finished, when it can never be. At this point, the latter becomes dogma, and dogma is never friendly to the former.

notdan's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies I’m sorry, but I don’t quite follow you. Could you please elaborate (without being vague), perhaps provide an example?

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

I’ll give you an example from Terrence McKenna.

Community builds a Culture. As long as it continues to Mindfully evolve that Culture, everything will be fine. But at some point the Culture mutates into a condition where it is acceptable for a young man to travel to a foreign land and kill people he doesn’t know for a cause he does not understand. That is not the Culture that Community was intending to build. It never was. A random mutation has promoted cause/reaction over thought/action.

A Culture that forms from cause/reaction is not built by a Community. Thus, it is incapable of having the best interest of the Community in Mind. It has no Mind guidance. Therefor, it is not, and cannot be, our friend.

A Culture that is created from thought/action is built by a Community. Thus, it is capable of having the best interest of the Community in Mind. It does have Mind guidance. Therefor it is, and always will be, our friend.

notdan's avatar

Ah, alright. Effectively, there’s an intentionally designed and maintained culture. Like the United States, perhaps the “mind” is the constitution, and the architecture of the branches of the government. A kind of “greater than any one person” system with traditional and intentional guidelines on the conventions of the culture.

The other, non-friendly, culture would be one without a framework to evolve in. And I guess I would describe it like that—it’s an evolving culture with no intended direction, and with evolution comes the risk of mutation, and no way to check that mutation if it occurs and spreads.

Is this a sound interpretation?

mattbrowne's avatar

Yes, Fluther makes the world super flat.

iamthemob's avatar

@mattbrowne – I feel like globalization 4.0 is gonna make the world one dimensional.

Eventually, we’re all just going to be an information singularity.

mattbrowne's avatar

And then there was light ;-)

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