Reading Response – Ethan Zuckerman


My first response to this reading is that this guy is hilarious and I’m so sad that I missed his talk in person! It’s true though, lolcats and porn rule the interwebs; at least the US interwebs. It’s also interesting that Zuckerman uses porn & activists as tools of success for internet platforms, being that porn & social activism are probably the areas that are most likely to be censored in the first place. I really liked Zuckerman’s quote that “our job as online advocates is to raise that cost of censorship as high as possible.”


Facebook in activism. It’s a funny thing, that facebook. It’s extremely easy to start a group, and then to gain a following of supporters. What’s unclear is how the activity on a space such as facebook translates into everyday life. Jamal’s comment about facebook being a glorified petition is definitely something that I would agree with. As with any online site, activity from users is easy to attract and generate, but its how to evoke direct action from these users that is interesting. In that respect, facebook is probably most best served, in terms of activism, as an organizing tool, rather than a space to affect change.