Shirky talks activism: how group forming networks change protest

Further to yesterday's post about Clay Shirky's Harvard talk on his book Here Comes Everybody, here's another video of Clay and David Weinberger chatting about the implications of cheap group-forming for activists. Link (Thanks, Amar!)

See also: Clay Shirky's Harvard talk: Here Comes Everybody


  1. this is just so much cyber-wankery. activism? name one thing activism has achieved in the last 7 years. this is a great way to get ones name on a few watch-lists tho. our so-called civilization is returning by decay to a kind of feudalism and no one really expected it going this way. not even Spooky ivy league academics like this tool.

  2. “Clay, honey, did you wash your hands for dinner? Let me see them…”

    srsly tho, activism has achieved plenty of things in the last 7 years. It’s true perhaps you don’t hear about it often in the mainstream media, though. I’d point you to if you want to read a lot of news about activist efforts all over the world, and what they’re accomplishing or not.

    And come on, ‘watch lists’? That might scare ordinary people, but most people who consider themselves ‘activists’ aren’t scared of crap like that. A lot of them have been on watch lists since before Bush was even in office. It’s something you live with, the price of being a dissident. People who believe strongly in acting for a cause are a lot less deterred by spooky government programs – assuming what they’re doing isn’t seriously illegal. It’s true they may be more at risk, but they’re also far more willing to accept that risk rather than shut up and hope to be left alone.

  3. One of the reasons that public protests have been ineffective lately is because the corporate owned media refuses to cover them. There have been a few times in the past few years where there were tens of thousands protesting and not a word in the press.

  4. Another reason, sadly, is that protest can be ignored. And that’s what is happening, a lot.

    The internet as a tool to facilitate direct action, on the other hand? Now that I can get behind.

Comments are closed.