Wednesday, September 17, 2008

ICT and

red shoes

I keep on reading things that work on the assumption that ICT or the internet is a unitary, autonomous phenomenon. Now I’ve always found Markham’s threefold categorisation really useful . She looks at how you can see the internet as a tool, the internet as a place or as a way of being and this framework is a good analytical tool for looking at policy discourse or even interview data. But it’s framed in the singular and that’s not so helpful. I think matters are made worse when writers attribute agency or effects to technology. Statements like: ICT is causing a revolution in how we think about learning or the internet is transforming social relationships are particularly suspect. After all it is human subjects who construct these technologies and human subjects who choose to, and choose how to make meanings with them.

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