The internet is definitely a social tool. You can communicate instantly with people all around the world, take classes from your home, find a date, shop, and many other things. Fine (2007) shows how protests can be organized and messages conveyed via networking sites like Twitter and text messages. These tools of technology were demonstrated to be used for social change. They protested, people listened, society changed (Fine, 2007). We have recently seen how history was changed for the better using social media, both in Egypt and OWS, and the not so good in the London riots.
Voelcker (2006) points to several “social entrepreneurs” who have used technology to change the world. Whether it is through a self-contained toilet using less water and chemicals, using food preservation techniques to limit waste, or offering free online courses, but technology can be used to better the world. By using technology in this way it allows others to increase their opportunities to help as well.
MoveOn.org is a great way to use technology for social change. Whatever the cause, this site brings different political issues to a discussion. As of today there are public option debates, Afghanistan issues, and other health care issues (MoveOn.org). The internet is a great way to get information instantly. It is also a great way to get misinformation quickly. It is important to be discerning about this medium of information because everyone does have access to it.
Fine, A. (2007). Networks online and on-land. Social Innovation Review. Winter, 2007. 36.
Voelcker, J. (2006). Creating social change: 10 Innovative Technologies. Stanford Social Innovation Review. Summer, 2006. 45-53.