One Response

  1. Ari
    Ari August 28, 2013 at 8:02 pm

    The answer to your first question, of course, is “no”, tools on their own can’t transform democracy, just like a hammer on its own can’t build a house. It’s people using tools productively that do any of those things.

    It’s not clear what you’re suggesting here – are you saying we should in some way try to restrain Myanmar from gaining access to the tools many of the rest of us use to improve our lives? Other countries can handle tech, but not Myanmar? Naturally, some people say nasty things online. Some people also use the tools for good. Since in Myanmar, some people stir up ethnic hatred in online forums, are you arguing that we should make sure the rest of the country doesn’t get access to these tools, because they might do the same thing?

    Maybe I just wasn’t getting what your argument was, but what you present seems to be an argument for a more open discussion about the internet and more coordinated efforts to help people learn information literacy. Of course, everyone shares concerns about the internet’s role in everything these days. Of course it can be a tool for destructiveness. But the answer to that is fostering positive usage and productive online behavior. There’s no putting the genie back in the bottle.

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