Assignment Requirements: Article Critique


So for this final , we have part A and B , for A , just like the picture I updated, we have to not only answer , also need to go into detail to talk about it . I know you maybe never read this book, so I will provide summary explain what is ” constitutive choice” and take a pic of the reading so you can have a look . (For this part it showe be around 4 pages )

Part b we can choose 2 out of 3 question to answer , I choose 2 and 3 . I will provide the pics of the reading that you can take a look . Just don’t summary what the reading is about , go in detail to talk about it . ( this part should be 1 to 2 page )

This are the summary about the concept

Constitutive Choices about Communications:
General legal and normative rules concerning issues as: free expression, privacy, access to information.
Specific design of communications media, structure of networks, and organization of industries
Institutions related to the creation of intangible and human capital (education, research, and innovation)
These constitutive choices matters to the public sphere (e.g. public discussion, public knowledge, and public opinion). Usually, the question for the public is who has the the power to control the information. For technology, what matters most is their architecture. The “architectural choices are often politics by other means, under the cover of technical necessity” (6). For example, different policies are raised by the government to control the Internet. As the Internet follows the protocol that it has right now, it is difficult for the government to control. If the Internet was not developed based on the notion of “sharing knowledge,” we could have had a different Internet where everything we are doing is scrutinized by the government. The normative and entrenched rule in America that we are free to express ourselves with constitutional protection makes it very difficult to see the internet as operating any other way than its current state.

Constitutive Choices
With the founding of the Republic, sets of conditions for its future had to be developed. Paul Starr refers to these conditions as “constitutive choices.”

The first of which that was made is what we have simply come to know as the First Amendment, or freedom of speech. However, the constitutive choice Starr mentions is much larger than that as it directly affects the development of newspapers and by extension the postal service. The old ideas of who should and could know what have been thrown out. Now a sovereign land, people needed to know how their state was running, what was occurring in far off areas, and they needed to have a solid way to communicate with each other – quickly.

Starr refers to this transition as “America’s First Information Revolution.” With the support of the Government for the first 40 years, the postal service helped build a knowledge economy. Since postage was cheap, newspapers were cheap, and most other factors of the press were cheap, information was able to be delivered all throughout the states. The expansion of the Post Office closed the information gap between communities and outsiders (country folk). As a result, the public and political lives of the people were able to closely interact with each other. In other words, the mass had access to information and used it.

In addition, the advance in the postal system and the expansion of newspapers helped create a modern census and played a large role in the rise of common schools. With the rise of common schools, literacy would rise and the cycle would be pushed even more. The constitutive choice to build an open source foundation for the Republic lead directly to its next constitutive choice: the creation and establishment of networks.

The invention of the telegraph gave rise to modern technological networks which in turn speed up the connections that now not only people have with each other as a mass, but that states have with their armies, that towns have with their sister merchant communities, that government has with itself and that newspapers have with each other.

However, at a play against the first constitutive choice, the telegraph evolved into a means of centralized control of information. While chiefly used for business, the telegraph service was also the first national monopoly. The reason behind the controlling path that the telegraph grew into is that it began growing without any government regulation. The telegraph was established as a private enterprise and as a result went through a series of competitions: who would control the networks? How would they control it? Luckily these answers were already provided pre-telegraph.

The interesting aspect of the constitutive choices that Starr discusses is that they are cumulative. The telegraph was simply a new technology to place at the front of processes of communication and information that were already developed and established. All in all, the decision to develop the telegraph privately gave America the challenge it needed to strengthen and affirm their constitutive foundations but it also represented America’s choice for future technological advancements. The telegraph was America’s fork in the road, their initial setting of networking structures, and their decision to privatize it was a precedent to broadcasting.

The third constitutive movement Starr discusses is the development of institutions that resulted in real, human, intangible progress. Previously I had mentioned the expansion of public schools with the rise of the Post Office and newspapers. From there, the technological networks that were implemented furthered the expansion of education. From the beginning, it was decided that knowledge, education, research, and information would be a priority (a constitutive movement) for America. While this movement continues today, a prime example in history involves the radio. The National Committee on Education by Radio (NCER) proposed that 15 percent of broadcast channels be reserved for government-chartered educational stations. This movement promoted the diffusion of knowledge. By extension, the mass flow of information, knowledge, and ideas laid the groundwork for further explorations, developments, and innovations. It needs reiteration that the constitutive choices that were made were cumulative and that there is no going back once the choice was made, which only further signifies Americans transformation through communication.

The googlization of everything


This is the link of the summary and the main argument in the book, u can take a look at it to get some idea. But do not copy the work !


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