"Is using the World Wide Web subversive?"

Concerning the internet and what will become of it, my thesis is that it has the potential to radically destabilize the current information monopolies. However, this is by no means an inevitable result, and there will be strong contention by the media bigs to shape the as-yet-lumpy-and-inchoate thing called cyberspace into a shopping mall. Search engines will significantly affect what people know as the internet. Insofar as people will not know about resources due to the littering of pathways with commercial messages, we will not go anywhere fast on this highway. I'm optimistic about the potential uses of the technology, because independents like myself can broadcast to unheard of numbers of people--at least now. But I would not endorse the statement : "The internet is a subversive form of communication." To pose the question as printed above is a McLuhanist gesture that locates the politics or meaning of the technology in the technology itself, and I believe that while it is possible to be subversive with the WWW, one is not inevitably subversive for having turned on a switch.

Michael Albert in Z - Magazine online concerning online dissident publications and their competition with corporate news.