martedì 23 settembre 2014

Obsolete Capitalism: Political connections between local sensors & social networks (Pt. XXIII - The Birth of Digital Populism)

Political connections between local sensors & social networks (Pt. XXIII)

Which political device can tackle the complexity of everyday reality? A self-organized anti-party, one that follows contemporary network logics, can. Casaleggio knows that an organization and its structure cannot arise and flourish in the vacuum. The -digital part of his organization can hardly be compared to the other political forces. To put it briefly, it is not the time yet for a total digital populism: this change must happen gradually. Online and offline activities must share the political scenario. Political representation is therefore achieved thanks to the work of local ‘sensors’, which are opposed to the typical network of local sections of the traditional parties. The 5SM MeetUp borrows directly from Howard Dean’s grassroots movement ; a former US Democratic leader, he is an iconic figure for American progressives. In 2004, Howard Dean used MeetUp groups as a secret and external strategy within the Democratic Party primaries. The online platform had been created in 2002 by Scott Heiferman. At first, Dean created the context - an organisational platform- and at a later stage he developed his political project around it. MeetUp and his experience in electoral fundraising were s crucial to Barack Obama’s success in the Presidential Election of 2008. Unlike the two American politicians, Casaleggio did not have a party in which to place his movement. Nor did he want to set up one; he was already looking towards a post-democratic era. He was right to advance the need of a strong connectivity between the physical world and the digital/social world : by linking the latter to the physical communities of a given area, the potential of digital networks would increase tenfold, becoming the most powerful propagandist device. This can be seen as a classic example of how the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. (...)
Read more @ The Birth of Digital Populism

Painting: Stelios Faitakis

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