Atwood H. Townsend once said "No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading, or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance." I couldn't agree more and while I know a handful of people who enjoy reading for pleasure, there are very few students and millennials in general who take pride in their personal reading list...
The revolutionary impact of fast spreading digital and mobile phone technologies underpin an on-going conversation, yet to reach its conclusion. From the perspectives of non-violence and social development, optimists argue that a mass communication infrastructure enables campaigners to challenge the conditions of injustice and oppression.
At the end of 2013 I will be stepping away from blogging until June 2016, by which time I'm sure blogging will be obsolete. It feels excellent to discard a cultural practice which sounds and has begun to feel like a combination of bragging, slogging, slobbing, blabbing, blubbing, gobbing, gagging, dragging and blagging.
Today, at dozens of cities across the world, one million people will be marching. Many will be wearing Guy Fawkes masks, and protesting against...well it's not exactly clear. Injustice and corruption have both been mentioned. But internet spying by the NSA and other government agencies will be the main rallying call.
Obviously these ideas are nothing new (hello Karl Marx), but personally I think he's spot on about the apathy and disenchantment felt by the public about a political system that seems to serve the few, not the many and that he's got his finger on the pulse of potent frustration among the electorate in the UK and indeed much of the Western world.
We have come to the end of Part 1 of The Internet. The civilian Internet is twenty-one years old. It's screamed change, distributed crap, fallen over, scraped its knees, watched more porn than one might think possible, learnt a phenomenal amount, spoken non-stop, dated prodigiously and developed impressive muscle.
The sharing of self-generated sexually explicit images or videos by mobile phone or online, is now commonplace amongst young people to the point that it is considered 'mundane' whether or not young people engage in it themselves. And it seems that lots do... Now, I know that young people want to experiment and explore their sexuality. And the thrill of taking risks and pushing boundaries is always going to be part of growing up. Frankly we are not going to stop sexting merely by instructing young people not to do it, or by pointing out that explicit under age images are illegal and they risk arrest. But I am deeply concerned that risks are not yet fully understood.
The Boomers don't always seem to understand that over the last few years there's been a significant shift away from the belief that the State will be with us all from cradle-to-grave and that now there's a visceral, unspoken understanding among a proportion of their children, that things won't be so easy for them.