Sunday, November 28, 2010

Warrior Lawyer reacts to Yolly Ong's Pilipinas kay pangit column

The outrage against Pilipinas kay ganda was widespread over the internet.  Hundreds or thousands of people using twitter, facebook, and blogs registered their dislike for the proposed tourism slogan and logo.

If Yolly Ong has any proof at all that the online disparagement of the Pilipinas kay ganda slogan was COORDINATED (which I think is her euphemism for paying so-called columnists to write favorably or negatively about companies, services, or politicians), she better come out with it.

I mean, Good God, I've always thought it was impossible and if Ms. Ong has proof that it can be done, I'd like to see it and find out how much it costs.

Here's a blog from The Warrior Lawyer that discusses how improbable it is to 'coordinate' a massive online display for outrage for the Pilipinas Kay Ganda slogan.

I am reposting the part which speaks directly about Ms. Ong's error in conjuring a coordinated online vilification campaign.

Pilipinas kay praning 
(pruh-ning, colloquial for paranoid)

And Ms. Villanueva-Ong, with her Harvard degree (as she takes pains to point out in her article), is dead wrong about there being an orchestrated, unified effort to stick it to the vanguard of the new, popular government (as personified by DOT Usec Vicente “Enteng” Romano, the brains behind the slogan/logo fiasco). By this, she presumably means an attack utilizing social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook and other online communities. Ms. Villanueva-Ong misses the point of what social networking is all about, which is simply to foster social interaction. It’s not primarily to bring about social or political change, although that may well happen. But at its core, social-networking is simply people wanting to connect with other like-minded people. There is no sinister, hidden agenda.

Malcolm Gladwell explains this lucidly in his article in the New Yorker (October 2010) “Small Change: Why the Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted” in which he explains why Tweeter and other new tools of social media will not necessarily be an effective tool for social activism. Gladwell makes a distinction between “strong-tie” groups, for example the nascent Al Qaeda, characterized by a tight, hierarchical organization and pre-existing interpersonal ties between members and what he calls “weak-ties” groups, like Twitter or Facebook, which are loose, democratic and decentralized.

“The platforms of social media are built around weak ties. Twitter is a way of following (or being followed) by people you may never have met. Facebook is a tool for efficiently managing your acquaintances, for keeping up with the people you would not otherwise be able to stay in touch with. That’s why you can have a thousand “friends” on Facebook, as you never could in real life.
The evangelists of social media don’t understand this distinction: they seem to believe that a Facebook friend is the same as a real friend xxx.
Because networks don’t have a centralized leadership structure and clear lines of authority, they have real difficulty reaching consensus and setting goals. They can’t think strategically; they are chronically prone to conflict and error. How do you make difficult choices about tactics or strategy or philosophical direction when everyone has an equal say?”

No one can manage, must less control, the denizens of cyberspace and point them one direction. It’s like herding cats, as I’ve heard it said more than once. At best, social networks can disseminate information and ideas. But concepts, abstractions and theories, once thrown unto the online free market of ideas, live or die on their on merits.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...