Wednesday, October 6, 2010

How social media can make history

The purpose of this assignment is to help you assess your understanding of the points Clay Shirky was making in his talk How social media can make history.  It will also give you practice with collaborative writing.

You must work in a team of two people on this assignment.

Answer any three of the following seven questions about the presentation.  Print and turn in one copy of your answers with the names of the team members.
  1. Shirky describes four pre-Internet revolutions in communication technology, what were they and what new media did they enable?
  2. At what point in its evolution does Shirky think a new technology can become revolutionary and cause significant social change?
  3. Which media are good for broadcast to a large audience?  Which are good for conversations?
  4. Shirky describes three significant differences between the Internet and previous communication media.  What were they?
  5. Shirky contrasts the Chinese government's handling of criticism of officials at the time of the Sichuan Province earthquake with then-Senator Obama's handling of criticism when he reversed his stand on the FISA vote.  What was the difference he cited?
  6. What point was Shirky illustrating with the following image?
7.  What point was Shirky making with the following series of three images?