For the sake of a little context, let me state the obvious, digital networks are having a profound impact on how knowledge is created, shared, transformed and consumed. In the last 20 years, we have gone from being passive consumers of knowledge to active creators of meaning. Yes I know, not all of us are Tweeters, or have YouTube blogs or even share on Facebook, but from the area of television media, where only a few had the power of voice, to now the age of digital media where billions are contributing daily, networks are completely reshaping the power of one. However, although technically speaking it is easy to share your thoughts to your own personal masses, Dr. Micheal Wesch, Associate-Professor of Cultural Anthropology at Kansas State University in Manhattan, claims that creating meaning and finding one’s identity in the digital world can be quite difficult. Michael is a cultural anthropologist exploring the effects of new media on society and culture.
In this 20 min TEDx talk, Wesch talks about the importance in shifting the paradigm from simply imparting knowledge to creating individuals who understand and harness their power as meaning seekers and meaning makers. It is a hopeful presentation that inspires and engages one in feeling that even the smallest contribution to well being and peace is a worthy and necessary contribution.
If you are a network nerd like me, I think you will like this.
The comments at the end are rather interesting as well if you want to look at the flip side of Wesch’s position.