A Framework for Social Change Through Media


Author/Creator ORCID





MA in Cultural Sustainability

Citation of Original Publication


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As new and social media have become widely used for social activism, many people question whether the Internet is living up to its early promise as a more democratic media. This paper analyses three organizations’ media models to determine whether these new technologies can be used to build a new and vibrant public sphere. This research illustrates that social and new media are succeeding in adding voices and issues to the public sphere that would not traditionally have an outlet; where they are failing is in broadening discussion and bringing people to consensus around divisive issues. For new media to contribute to a healthy public sphere, the online landscape must evolve to include mechanisms for breaking out of silos in order to promote a more thoughtfully engaged citizenry’s participation.