The Impact of Internet on Society

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This is a larger question that cannot be answered until a few more years have passed. Already it has changed work and play, privacy and identity, time and space, love and collaboration. There is more to come, and the changes will come faster and faster.

We live in increasingly recursive, fractal stages of accelerated development. Time and space are compressing more quickly. We're already at the point where communication technologies flow at the speed of light. For some, it is already too slow. World of Warcraft servers in one country experience delays when connecting with other global servers. We balk at not receiving an E-mail the instant it was sent.

As McLuhan said, "our Age of Anxiety is, in great part, the result of trying to do today's job with yesterday's tools and yesterday's concepts". The future is expensive, and not everyone will be able to afford it.

The impact of the internet of society is a growing area of research.

One major impact is regarding self-organizing systems, which the internet an example of, and their expedited evolution. Kevin Kelly and Christian Fuchs both discuss self-organizing systems at length, because the implications of their accelerated development are vast. Potential implications include, but are not limited to:

  • The internet's further ability to develop itself without human input
  • A further reliance on the internet as a point of convergence
  • Exotropy, as defined by Kevin Kelly


What Technology Wants by Kevin Kelly