The Virtual Agora: Why Digital Democracy Is A Vital Next Step In Human Organization

The prima facie reason for structuring calls this way is to make them as horizontal as possible. The Global People's Movement--it seems to me--is built around the idea that those in power have built up a hierarchy of power that systematically permeates throughout our civilization and society that makes participation in movements difficult. By using telephones and the internet we are effectively removing a lot of the barriers to participation that a lot of people face. When someone does not have to travel then they are a) more likely to participate and b) do not have to take much time out of their already busy lives. If the stated goals of the People's Movement are to include the everyday person then the hardships of those people must be presupposed. In the capitalist world the everyday person works 1/3 of their lives and sleeps another 1/3 which only leaves them 1/3 for their passions, desires, and projects. Lay on top of that the constant strain of working for ends meat (and sometimes less) and the population is automatically divided into those with the privilege to participate and those without. Calls can remove this barrier at least in some capacity, at least in initial exposure.

 

Secondly, civilization has been segregated by the oligarchy into many different--sometimes conflicting--subgroups based on anything from race, class, and creed to nationality or religion. A lot of these designations are interpreted and assumed visually. By removing the visual component it is a lot harder to segregate a group; you cannot divide what you cannot see. Even gender can be a grey area when all a facilitator has to go is a name and a voice. Therefore, by holding conversations in the virtual agora the capacity exists to temporarily remove the illusions that the powerful have created to divide us. 

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