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The word makes many cringe, as it harkens back to a different time. When commu-
nism was spreading and America was torn apart with the McCarthy trials and the Red Scare. In
America the word socialism is too close to communism for comfort. But one thing that most
Americans don’t understand is socialism is ever more present in our media.
Socialism is an economic and political theory. This theory calls for the public owner-
ship and management of production and resources. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels are two of
the most influential socialist theorist. For Marx, socialism is a transition stage between capital-
ism and communism.
Karl Marx believed, “It is not the consciousness of [people] that determines their exis-
tence, but their social existence that determines their consciousness.” Meaning that recognizing
the relationships in and reality of your existence determines your surroundings. It is not how
you perceive the world that matters, but how the world actually exists.
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“It is not the consciousness of [

their existence, but their social exi
their consciousness.” ~ Karl Mar

We move closer and closer to a noncapitalistic society as
the Internet connects people all across the globe. Craigslist connect
buyers and sellers directly. Kiva connects poor farmers in third-world
countries with philanthropists. As generations begin younger and
younger on the Internet, they share more and more of our lives. As
we collaborate and cooperate it seems only realistic that this social-
ism will fade over into the non-digital world.
We have seen the results of natural disasters and social
media, we have created a call to action that, requieres these men,
women and children get help sooner. We use social media to direct
our government and aid organizations, comminicating through the
formation of groups, and comments on out congressmans page. We
must continue this communication, or we will be lost in the
The Internet.
Karl Marx probably never considered the Internet in his theory. In fact Karl Marx focused on a different type of socialism
than the one I am talking about, a political theory instead of a social one. However the socialism of the Internet does effect the
political government. As we have seen in recent events in Egypt, and Lybia the Internet is allows the level of communication that is
needed to overthrow a corrupt government. The Internet has allowed democracy to spread, as the people demand to have a voice in
the matters of their government. The Internet has created a socialism media that has cultivated the idea of democracy all across the
The Internet has broken down nation borders as people all over the world are connected to each other. This allows a spread
of information and the creation of a decentralized network ruled by the people, for the people. The Internet has always played by
different rules. Rules that might be illegal here but not in another country, so the World Wide Web tends to allow for these minor
(and sometimes major) illegal activities to continue. Whether it is sharing music and movies or just sharing information the Internet
has developed a communal aspect.
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3 C’s and a S.

Cooperation, Collaboration,
Collectivism and Sharing. Media theorist Clay
Shirky’s book, Here Comes Everybody, explores

[people] that determines

the new socialist environment that starts with
sharing, cooperation, collaboration and finally
Sharing, ever since we begin life the

istence that determines

idea is enforced, it is the joint use of a resource
or space.
Cooperation, is the process of
working and acting together, so not only are

you sharing space but you are joining together
and assisting each other.
Collaboration, is working to achieve
a goal, you are sharing and cooperating for a
greater goal. This requires participation and
leadership to create he best outcome.
Finally we reach Collectivism,
expanding outside of peer groups and to the
communities and nations, requireing
participation from many.
Delicious Digg
Facebook Reddit
Napster StumbleUpon
MySpace Flickr
BitTorrent Pinterest
Cooperation sites like Flickr allow
Peer to Peer sharing first hit the news
people to organize their photos into different
in 1999 with the creation of Napster. Napster was
categories for everyone to see. Pinterest is also
mainly known for the free music it offered and
a new social networking site that allows people
was quickly attackedby the Recording Industry
to “pin” graphics and text like recipes or how-to
Association of America due to violation of
guides to “boards” that people can follow and
copyright laws. Since then the government has
add to.
proscecuted those who participate in file sharing
Other aggregator sites like Digg, and
but it is still a common occurence all across the
Reddit allow individuals to rank web articles
world due to different copyright laws in different
and sites. StumbleUpon is another site that al-
lows people to like websites and catagorize them
Facebook and Flickr both allow people
to specific interest, so others who are interested
to share pictures as well as their lives with each
in the same thing can stumble upon them.

Sh it on
in ra
g o pe
o C

Co n
lle t i o
cti ra
vis ll ab
m Co
Open Office Collaboration has been around since
the Internet first existed as individuals posted
Collectivism is found in Wikipedia, open-source software projects. These allow
Linux and Open office as millions can people to contribute and fine tune different
contribute, and then a smaller number edit. This programs.
is similar to the millions who can write code for Open Source is computer code that is
Linux or Open Office. allows the source code to be available to users
Wikipedia has allows people from all to study, change, improve and even distribute
over, whether they are an expert or not to create the software. Due to legal implications there
pages and content about topics. Then they have are a very strict copyright laws surrounding the
gathered a group of individuals to edit and fact definition of what open-source is and what can
check these entries. Forming a collective be shared.
knowledge of the world that is constantly evolv- According to Bill Gates, open-source,
ing as history is recorded everyday. Think of creates a license “so that nobody can ever im-
the wealth of knowledge future generations will prove the software.” Gates believes open-source
have as they get real accounts as the news squanders opprotunities for jobs and he still
happens. It is amazing. refuses to support it.