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I'm not sure you read this very well. The notion is not that the Arab spring was a utopia. The notion was that the Arab spring, fueled by direct person-to-person connection on FB, Twitter, Whatsapp, etc, were symptomatic of the Internet's power to create freedom and social utopia.

It's part of a persistent strain of technoutopianism. You might read Tom Standage's excellent 1998 book "The Victorian Internet", which talks about the adoption of the telegraph during the Victorian era. Many of the same things people said about the Internet's power to change society were said about the telegraph: https://www.amazon.com/Victorian-Internet-Remarkable-Ninetee...




And it absolutely did, as did the Gutenberg press, the telephone, the radio and television. We just don't recognize it because we've never experienced a pre-telegraph life.


It did change life, but not in the utopian way people were thinking. People thought, for example, that the telegraph would eliminate war by connecting people and eliminating the possibility of the misunderstandings that come from very high-latency communication technologies (e.g., horses carrying handwritten letters). It turns out that part of pre-telegraph life not only continued, but got worse.


Telegraphs didn't have dopamine feedback loops via feedback such as "likes".


I'm not sure that's material to my point, but assuming you're just starting a tangent, I'd disagree. They had replies.

It was not as immediate and exciting as modern technology, but it was way more exciting than what previously existed. People even fell in love by telegraph. See, for example, the 1880 novel "Wired Love: A Romance of Dots and Dashes": https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/26/wired-love-romance...


Dopamine is not uniquely associated with social media.

Furthermore, dopamine isn’t addictive and “In studies with rats, where dopamine was suppressed, rats showed “normal hedonic reaction patterns,” and still showed normal pleasure responses even though dopamine was suppressed.

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/women-who-stray/201701/n...


"Please don't insinuate that someone hasn't read an article."




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