The Qualitative Influence of the Independent Media (6)

Internet independent media, however, have certain degree of limitation on influencing the globalizing circumstance, which depends on: (1) how much political pressure would be put on people’s daily life; (2) how the changing tendency of social atmosphere is going to be; and (3) what the distinctive nationalities or values held by the majorities are. For example, the “IMC” played an important role in catalyzing the “Anti-WTO Movement” in Seattle in 1999. During the movement, the U.S. government, the host of the WTO conference in the year, adopted a typical public security strategy (e.g. to deploy “sufficient” police forces at the locale of the conference, etc.) to suppress the activism on the street. However, the public, including the local and the global ones, is willing to respect and support the dissenting voices delivered by the independent media: the monstrous organization having the absolute power to make the rules to control the development of world economy must be criticized and reviewed immediately. At least, the “IMC” has room to clearly express its anti-Establishment stance by exercising the right of free speech to carrying out such kind of social movement that was recognized as a significant rise of global media activism.

(See: The Theory and Practice of Anti-Globalization Movement: Case Studies of the Independent Media in the Chinese Societies – Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bonn: Bonn University. 2014)

The Qualitative Influence of the Independent Media (5)

Thirdly, “Inmediahk.net” and “Coolloud.org” both realize that their media social movements are being carried out in the context of globalization. For the two media, the primary aim of the practices is to enlarge their influence on the current development of civil society in a globalization era. Basically speaking, the Internet can have a role in this concern. And, the running of the internet-based independent media can help consolidate people’s consciousness on public issues and create a solidarity spirit for global citizens. Thanks to the Internet’s real-time operating character, the door for a world social movement is open. For this, the American “IMC” is a good example: the foundation of the media for anti-globalization gave rise to the blooming of the internet-based independent media movement around the globe. In East Asia, “Inmediahk.net” and “Coolloud.org” have a close cooperative relationship with each other for social movement practice. At the observing point of the global development of independent media, we can discover an interesting phenomenon: neo-liberal/laissez-faire/capitalist economy nowadays has been globally developing on the one hand, and the rise of social movement is also globalizing on the other. The practice of the people’s collective movement is no longer restricted within a single region or country, but is carried out through a process of trans-regionalization of social action on the earth – not only can locals get the fresh news about the development of foreign social movements, but can give out their support through internet independent media also. By realizing the trans-regional communication, the foreign/local differentiation of socio-political and economic issues is gradually diminished that all people are able to understand the fact of homogeneity of their living circumstance and to have enough knowledge to think more about how to tackle the common issues collectively. On the scene of globalization, when such communicative interaction between different people develops, the power of the world social movement is to be further strengthened, having the weight to overturn the present politico-economic domination on all humans contributed by world superpowers.

(See: The Theory and Practice of Anti-Globalization Movement: Case Studies of the Independent Media in the Chinese Societies – Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bonn: Bonn University. 2014)

The Qualitative Influence of the Independent Media (4)

Internet media, as having the character of realizing the rapidity of information propagation, are facilitating a positive development of interaction between social campaign groups and common people, fostering the establishment of a public opinion towards social issues reflection. By using the media, people can share their ideas about reforming the current society and receive direct feedback from others. This approach to deliberations for social development is more flexible than the traditional one: to participate in social movements organized by activists and campaign groups. In addition, the popularization of the use of the Internet actually realizes a no-border communication between different peoples around the globe, actualizing the global transnational connection between social movement organizers and supporters and helping the form of a world social power for world citizens. Therefore, it is noteworthy that to set up and operate an independent media on the Internet becomes one of the workable approaches to social movement practice nowadays.[1]

(See: The Theory and Practice of Anti-Globalization Movement: Case Studies of the Independent Media in the Chinese Societies – Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bonn: Bonn University. 2014)

[1] “…perhaps the most dramatic change in social movement organizing in the last few decades has been the impact of the Internet and, more generally, of electronic communication. …Technologies that operate over the Internet offer so many different kinds of support to social movements that it may be reductive to regard them as simply vehicles for ‘message transmission.’ When combined with their implications, digital media have become a partial substitute for traditional forms of social movement organization as well.” See: Tarrow, Sidney G. (2011). Power in Movement: Social Movements and Contentious Politics. New York: Cambridge University. p. 137. “Political action is made easier, faster and more universal by the developing technologies. ICTs (information and communication technologies) lower the costs and obstacles of organizing collective action significantly.” See: Donk, Wim Van De; Loader, Brian D.; Nixon, Paul G.; Rucht, Dieter (2004). Cyberprotest: New Media, Citizens, and Social Movements. New York: Routledge. p. 97. “The Net, we are told, is bringing into being a cottage industry of small independent producers who are sweeping away ‘the monolithic empires of mass media’ (Negroponte, 1996:57). It is generating a new culture that is critical, selective, and participatory. People can pull from the Web and digital media what they want, rather than settling for what is pushed at them (Negroponte, 1996:84). More generally, the Net is engendering an egalitarian, emancipated, and interconnected world – ‘cyberspace’ – that is reconfiguring the offline world in which we live, and making it a better place (Poster, 1997). …It seems worth investigating, therefore, whether the Net makes it easier than before to publish alternative opinions, and also whether Internet technology makes possible new ways of doing journalism.” See: Couldry, Nick; Curran, James (2003). Contesting Media Power: Alternative Media in a Networked World. Oxford: Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 227-228.

The Difficulties and Challenges (5)

All in all, the two independent media’s social movement practices can be seen as a significant part of anti-globalization movement because they are closely working with many activists who are opposing the negative effects of globalization, especially the economic one. However, it should be noted that the independent media movements in the East Asia are carried out not only for approaching to the end of anti-globalization activism, but for helping establish an ideal society in which all forms of domination, including the economic, political, cultural and social, would be significantly diminished that people’s voices for a better united society, through the independent media, can be heard around the globe. The social activists’ actions on the internet and on the street are becoming a concrete social power to facilitate the progressive development of modernity and civilization in a global context. Before accomplishing the goal of the social movement, it should be remembered that all historical flags, doctrines and ideologies are insignificant when people recognize that they all have the responsibility to work the further development of civilization out with their own hands. The media activism of “Coolloud.org” and “Inmediahk.net” is a good example of telling this fundamental reason.

 

Coolloud.org

The place of the base Taiwan
The year of foundation 1997
The core members of the media Sun Chiung-Li (Sun Qiongli孫窮理) and the correspondent group
The financial resource Civil donation
The representative participations in social movement “Anti-Sweatshop Movement” in 2001;

“Anti-WTO Movement” in 2005;

“Cheval-de-frise Film Festival”

Table 4: The Profile of “Coolloud.org”

(See: The Theory and Practice of Anti-Globalization Movement: Case Studies of the Independent Media in the Chinese Societies – Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bonn: Bonn University. 2014)

The Difficulties and Challenges (4)

Transnational corporations and enterprises are benefited from globalization in expanding their business, so do individual activists and social movement organizations. Their global collective actions, including the online and the offline, are giving more pressure to the whole Establishment that actually serves vested interest groups to do more for people’s well-being. This is one of the main characteristics of anti-globalization movement.

As an active independent media in Asia, “Coolloud.org” acknowledges that using a label, a slogan or a watchword to define its media running is unnecessary, is of no meaning for the development of a new social movement because it would ossify social movement practice in the globalized world. The world society is changing. The nature of present civilization is to be continually forged by the wills, behaviours, and demands of people living in different parts of the world. These people all have their personal history, thinking and idea of structuring a better globe in their particular cultural context. To choose and use a single perspective or ideology to understand or analyze political conflict and social issue may be of an effective approach to social movement development because it could help centralize the attention of people to social happening and accumulate social power. However, this approach would at the same time weaken the distinctiveness and individuality of different majorities as the subject of social movement. The crowd would become a “machine”, serving a fixed principle, to be used by political careerists that it is a historical lesson needed to be learnt. Therefore, to avoid being bound by a single abstract or ideology, as Sun said, can secure the flexibility of social movement development not only in the local but also in the global.

(See: The Theory and Practice of Anti-Globalization Movement: Case Studies of the Independent Media in the Chinese Societies – Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bonn: Bonn University. 2014)

The Difficulties and Challenges (3)

“Also, most independent media have expressed high-degree concern about globalization issues…. ‘Coolloud.org’ is an experimental media practice connected with various Taiwanese social movements, focusing on carrying out its independent media works in a practical context. In the process of our running, we are trying to integrate our experience with global social activism for opening up a new form of collective social movement practice in the globalized world. Therefore, we participated in the ‘Anti-WTO Movement’ in Hong Kong in 2005. Social activists and NGOs should have a responsibility to push a progressive change of civil society in the globalization era that would be out of their original horizon. ‘Coolloud.org’ is not working under the flag of ‘anti-globalization’. However, we focus on the activistic works worthy to be done in our field and keep reflecting on our strategies for practicing the media social movement in Taiwan.” [1]

“Coolloud.org” is not only working in local society, but at the same time developing its media activism globally. The independent media understands that the changing Taiwanese society is deeply influenced by the ongoing development of globalization. In globalization, the logics of capitalism and materialism are further propagated by political and economic powers in the rest of the world. Under the circumstance, localized or regional politics is gradually not compatible with the rapid change of the globalized world and its relative radical phenomena. Therefore, “Coolloud.org” actively connects its media social movement with various individual activists and NGOs not only in the local but in different countries of the world.

(See: The Theory and Practice of Anti-Globalization Movement: Case Studies of the Independent Media in the Chinese Societies – Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bonn: Bonn University. 2014)

[1] Ibid.

Abstract: Anarchy and Globalisation – The Significance of Anarchy in the Development of Global Politics, Economy and Community

Anarchy is an important humanistic theory of revealing the fact that political power is always making people believe in the absoluteness of its existence through history making and media manipulation. Anarchy opposes all forms of domination, because domination is the very root of the alienation of human life contributed by the ruling, whatever the form of political power – the oligarchic, aristocratic, communistic, democratic – is.  Different from general political philosophies endorsed by the power, anarchy argues that the so-called “government” is a plastic Establishment serving the demand of vested interest blocs. From the ancient to the globalised eras, the essence of political power is never changed: through “war” in every aspect of human civilization: the religious, economic, racial, etc., the power accumulates its dominative energy by monopolising natural and human resources to consolidate the absoluteness of its top-down mastery mechanism.

This research contains, first, the discussions of the “origins” of anarchist thought – Laozi’s Taoism, Zeno of Citium’s anarchistic thinking and Jesus Christ’s libertarianism. Secondly, P. Kropotkin and P. J. Proudhon’s socio-economic anarchisms will be analysed and reviewed. The relationship between anarchy and today’s globalised world is to be thirdly examined and justified with U. Beck’s globalisation theory and the perspective of anti-globalisation movement. In conclusion, it is justifiable to say that an anarchistic nature of human life is present if people start to work out their own answer to the issues of today’s civilisation “with their hands”.

Keywords: anarchy, anarchism, globalization