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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/193863
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- Society's new communities for life-long learning
- Mitchell, Matthew
- In recent history our perception of the world and its problems has been dominated by a powerful media utilising a mass communication system. This system provided much of our social communication and in turn determined, in part, how we interpret our world and make the decisions that affect it. It has been argued that mass media was a cultural off-spring of the industrial revolution along with its sibling: formal secular public education (mass education). Both cater to an industrial society’s need for standardisation; both encourage mostly passive reception by individuals of mainstream values, knowledge and world-views. People's adoption of the internet is eroding this model of social interaction. Instead of passively receiving information without discussion, many people are now openly debating and challenging the messages they have received. Furthermore, rather than being restricted to messages filtered by the mass-media machine, people are now actively engaging in exchanging all manner of content and ideas. In this paper we argue that these new forms of interaction are creating new attitudes and expectations; that there is a growing movement of people who are refusing to accept, without challenge, mainstream messages. This movement is encouraged by increasing evidence of the failure of mainstream world-views, theories and policies. As a result of these failures, and because of the enabling technologies of the internet, people are seeking to develop their own, independent, understanding of the world and its problems. In this paper we present evidence for this movement and we discuss the implications for our traditional education institutions which, until now, have been protected from their critics by the limited social interaction allowed by mass media and the passive reception of ideas encouraged by both these siblings.
- Publication type
- Conference paper
- Research centre
- Swinburne University of Technology. Faculty of Higher Education, Lilydale
- Contemporary issues in business and organisations: proceedings of the Faculty of Higher Education Lilydale Research Symposium, Lilydale, Victoria, Australia, 03 June 2009 / Steven Greenland (ed.), pp. 67-74
- Publication year
- Faculty of Higher Education Lilydale, Swinburne University of Technology
- Publisher URL
- Copyright © 2009 Faculty of Higher Education Lilydale and contributors. Published version of this paper reproduced with the kind permission of the publisher.