Could The Internet Be The Public Sphere

1808 Words8 Pages
From the variety of hot topics that are covered by news, we can see that influence of the public opinion from the Internet cannot not be underestimated, but the scholars have a different view against ‘Could the Internet be the public sphere’. In this essay, commenting function in Yahoo News articles will be used to evaluate its performance of opinions expressions with Habermas’ normative standard for public sphere, and to discuss the limitation of Habermas’ deliberative approach of the public sphere within the Internet. In Yahoo News , there is a function for users commenting on news articles. At the bottom of every news article page, users can use the form to comment on the news, and read other users’ comment of the thread, and interact…show more content…
However, these discussions mostly are limited within a bunch of users, who read articles from Yahoo page, forming an isolated deliberative group, this strengthen the fragmentation and polarization of the opinions. (Sunstein, 2001, p. 65), to some extend, this also tells why rational deliberation cannot fully promise the democracy on the Internet. Rasmussen (2008,p.9) also pointed out that, debate often need to share moral values, but it is hard in an increasingly differentiate Internet world. Internet users from around the world have different cultural backgrounds and values, it is difficult to adhere a set of standardized requirements and propose a single solution for the same problem. In summary , we can find Habermas's deliberative mode does not apply to multi- value society or virtual network space, as it put too much emphasis on communicative rationality and consensus. Take the view from the actual operation of the network, due to site ownership, network management system, executive power, the consumer ability to communicate and their use of habits and many other issues are raised, such as: the vicious competition among interest groups, online political colonization, hasty and irresponsible online speech, these seems unable to support the network considered as deliberative public sphere. However, if it is to examine diverse themes, styles and participation, the use of Internet is
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