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By Marshall T. Poe

A background of Communications advances a concept of media that explains the origins and influence of alternative types of communique - speech, writing, print, digital units and the net - on human heritage within the long-term. New media are 'pulled' into frequent use through huge historic traits and those media, as soon as in common use, 'push' social associations and ideology in predictable instructions. This view permits us to determine for the 1st time what's really new in regards to the web, what's no longer, and the place it truly is taking us.

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We like to believe that we are, perhaps uniquely among animals, moral creatures: we can know what is right and what is wrong. We can know this, we say, because God has granted us a moral code (the religious version) or because we evolved a kind of innate moral sense (the secular version). In either case, we don’t exactly decide what is right and wrong. Our values are “just there,” an intrinsic part of the universe. When we act, we say we are guided by these transcendental values. The timeless “ought” shapes the temporal “is,” or at least should.

25 1 homo loquens Humanity in the Age of Speech Yes indeed, dear Phaedrus. But far more excellent [than writing], I think, is . . 1 – Plato, Phaedrus, 276E Most people know Plato as the world’s first philosopher, but he was also the world’s first media critic. ” By this he meant reasoned discussion, a kind of debate in which real people present arguments and other real people affirm or refute them by means of logic. He showed how one could use dialectic to arrive at the Truth in the dialogues for which he is justly famous.

Though the alliances are far from stable, there is little opportunity to cheat effectively as the contribution of members can be verified continuously. The exchange that goes on in the coalition is simultaneous, not serial. Everyone in the raiding party is murderously pummeling his competitors at the same time. They don’t take whacks by turns. Thus, if one of the coalition members doesn’t pull his weight, the others will notice immediately and the coalition will disintegrate with no great loss to the remaining members.

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