TED Radio Hour: Clay Shirky: How Can Social Media Make History? People across the globe are turning to social media to connect with each other in new ways. Clay Shirky shows how our increasingly interconnected world is transforming news and politics as well as our roles as citizens.
The history of the modern world could read as a history of ways of arguing, social media guru Clay Shirky says. During the Arab Spring, for example, we saw protesters battle their governments' top-down control of news with Facebook, Twitter and text messaging.
As media evolve, Shirky asks, what sort of arguments will we have — and how will it change the governments of nations?
Shirky's work focuses on the rise of networks and the use of decentralized technologies for social creation and open-source development. "A group is its own worst enemy," he says; new technologies can enable cooperative structures as alternatives to centralized and institutional structures.