2017 Student Research Conference:
30th Annual Student Research Conference

Mobile Technology, Social Networking, and Habermas' Ideal of a Public Sphere


Colton G. Barber
Dr. Marilyn Yaquinto, Faculty Mentor

The advent of smartphones and popular applications such as Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook brought an overload upon the marketplace of ideas. Social networking applications display elements of Habermas’ public sphere. However, the cacophony of different yet contextually legitimate accounts of ‘truth’ perpetuated by these mediums makes the pursuit of objective truth difficult. This paper synthesizes ideas stemming from cultural, critical, and social philosophers such as Baudrillard, Debord, and Benjamin to analyze humanity’s accommodation of mobile technology. Implications of this pattern include disunity amongst citizens, a weakened political system, and a lack of social progress.

Keywords: Critical Theory, Social Media, Communication, Truth, Public Sphere, Technology, Philosophy, Postmodernism

Topic(s):Communication
Philosophy & Religion

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 407-1
Location: VH 1010
Time: 2:30

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