Welfare Internet

One thought on “Welfare Internet”

  1. With respect to the “time wasting,” it’s important to note that social media is *social*. People who can’t afford transportation or entertainment costs can still socialize with peers over the net. A number of people with disabilities use social media to foster their social-well being, a critical aspect of physical and mental health. Qualifying time spent on social media as inherently wasted suggests that the less affluent or differently abled classes have fewer rights to socialize. The core of this punitive mindset is decidedly Dickensian.

    Social interaction is an important aspect of time spent on the internet, particularly for children – that demo whose primary job is to learn how to interact with their community. Given the increasing need to develop informational literacy, spending time on the internet would seem to provide opportunities to do both. Look at the learning curve of adults who first engage with social media, there’s often an initial (sometimes persistent) disconnect between social mores in physical venues and those in play over the internet. If our social commons are to be digital, then we should encourage young people to become comfortable with the medium. We desperately need more civil civic discussion.

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