In “The Progression of the Public” by Jeff Jarvis, he attempts to explain how everyone nowadays has a voice through the Internet, and while he’s not wrong, he starts to contradict himself, in my opinion. What I thought I was reading was that each individual has his or her own identity and nothing can replicate that.
He defends this by at first claiming everyone has the tools and the power to “create and join publics, establishing our own identities and societies.” He then states later on that “we find the publics we wish to join based merely on gross labels, generalizations, and borders drawn about us – but instead on our ideas, interests, and needs; cancer survivors, libertarians, Deadheads, vegetarians, single moms, geeks, even privacy advocates.”
While I believe the author means, is that even if each individual is unique, they can still share certain hobbies, ideals, or even diseases with others, thus making them a community. However, aren’t these “ideas, interests, and needs” still just generalizations and labels? Some are demeaning and some are factual but even so, if one is trying to avoid ‘joining a public based merely on gross labels’, I do not believe this article does a very good job about it.