Conceptualizing Community: Implications for Policymaking in a Cyberage
Discussion surrounding the development of telecommunications policy has typically been framed in terms of communities of access and of interest. Indeed, communication technologies are often understood as a supplement to face-to-face communication, which is empirically understood as the basis for social interaction and the establishment of community (see McLuhan and Fiore, 1967). The Internet is no exception. There are, however, various and often competing definitions of “community” with respect to the Internet, thereby raising serious questions for both public policy and political activity, including but not limited to the following: What does it mean to be a citizen in this new cyberage? (See Jones, 1995; 1997.) With what rights is a cyber-citizen endowed? (See Etzioni, 2004.) What is public space? (See Stewart, Gil-Egui and Pileggi, 2004a; 2004b). What is communal? (See Fulk, et al., 1996).
KeywordsPower Relation Smart Card Collective Intelligence Universal Service Telecommunication Infrastructure
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