A Reality Check 2003 by Jan Servaes

By Jan Servaes

The globalisation of social, cultural and monetary family members is facilitated, and even as conditioned through advancements within the details and communications applied sciences (ICT) and infrastructure. Human wisdom introduced mankind from an oral to a literate tradition, because of the discovery of print media. the improvement of digital media within the final century lead the way for the data age, within which spatial and temporal constraints are lifted.

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Sample text

Taken together, these do not merely reflect the borrowings of contemporary EU policy discourses from older academic theories of an emerging information society. ) However, such borrowing by contemporary information society policy discourses reflect only some highly selective elements of the seminal post-industrial thesis advanced by Daniel Bell. A more rounded engagement with Bell’s thesis, however, would reveal that whatever its analytical flaws and conservative ideological leanings, it was certainly not singing along to the ‘there is no such thing as society’ hymn sheet which has become the increasingly dominant anthem of our own times.

On the one hand, we have the implied message that we confront the emergence of a radically new and distinct kind of social formation, but on the other, this is defined and measured solely in terms of changes in the supply and use of new technological infrastructures or services. For all operational purposes, the information society, no less than the successor concept of eEurope, is fundamentally framed, imagined and measured in terms of the maximum production and use of new ICTs. The same applies to the sister concept of a ‘knowledge-based’ Europe, where once again the predominant emphasis falls upon the production and dissemination of one particular subcategory of knowledge: the scientific and technical (Preston, 2002a).

Another borrowing here is the assertion that material issues (such as those pertaining to wealth and income) or the ‘politics of distribution’ are now much less salient compared to ‘the politics of representation’, or in extreme cases, compared to the ‘end of politics’ in the modern sense. Another echo comprises a set of presumptions about the decline (if not death) of larger-scale ‘modern’ social solidarities and integration mechanisms, and an increasing obsession with individual consumer(ist) or small discrete group identities or cultures.

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