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Web of Ideas: Objectivity, Truth and Blogs

Wikipedia.org -- the grassroots encyclopedia -- has frozen edits to the page about George W. Bush because supporters and detractors were revising the page at a head-spinning clip. Wikipedia's aim is to present an article that contains the core of acknowledged facts about the President, with links to pages that argue many sides of the issue. This assumes that there is an objective core, an idea that dedicated Post-Modernists would dispute. For the rest of us it raises interesting questions about the Web's effect on authority. Is the multiplicity of voices on the Web in fact leading us to a stronger division between fact and opinion than ever before, rather than the fusing of fact and values some have expected? And is authority moving to groups instead of to individuals? Are we seeing the development of "multi-subjectivity," that is, webs of subjective commentary that, because of their diverse viewpoints, can "compete for truth" with objective sources. What's the locus of truth on the Web?

This discussion took place on Wedesday 10/6/04.

Web of Ideas is a Wednesday night discussion series at the Berkman Center, lead by Berkman Fellow David Weinberger, co-author of The Cluetrain Manifesto and author of Small Pieces Loosely Joined and Everything is Miscellaneous

Past Event
Wednesday, Oct 6, 2004
Time
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM