MySpace Backlash Could Stunt Emerging Social Networking, warns MIT’s Henry Jenkins – And Government Regulations Would Widen the “Participation Gap”

By on 06/21/2006 5:25 PM @


 

Panic, hysteria and overheated media coverage of privacy issues at MySpace threaten the growth of emerging social networks, says Henry Jenkins, co-director of the Media Studies program and Professor of Media Convergence at MIT.

Henry believes that social networking will be essential to young people as they organize in groups for social and political action. He is concerned that the backlash surrounding the problems with MySpace could force Congress into creating restrictive laws which would bar computers in libraries and school from using social networking software.

Much has been said about the “Digital Divide.” Henry sees a real danger in what he calls the “Participation Gap” – the gap between young people who can participate in social networks and others who are blocked – and says the backlash against MySpace will only widen this gap.

For an in-depth look at this subject, read this dialogue between Henry and Danah Boyd, a PhD student at U.C. Berkley about MySpace and the Online Predators Act.

Bookmark This:  Henry has just launched a new blog Confessions of a Aca/Fan

— Andy Plesser

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