Can ICTs make humanity morally accountable?
May 13th, 2008

What would the world be like if Smart Mobs also acted as moral agents to place pressure on individuals, and governments to be morally accountable for their actions. I raise this question in light of recent global events many of us have witnessed, specifically the aftermath of the cyclone Nargis in Myanmar/Burma.

It has become abundantly clear in the aftermath of the cyclone Nargis the Military Junta’s reaction to foreign aid and assistance is placing many of the citizens of Myanmar/Burma in a precarious situation. Simply stated, thousands face desperate futures of uncertainty and possibly death. It would be a disaster of great enormity and scale.

Cyclone Nargis - delta region (Myanmar)

Photo: International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (p17609).

We are aware of the possible outcome in Myanmar/Burma because we too have been able to experience this disaster enfolding (albeit a mediated and diluted experience). We are receiving Tweets from the Twittersphere, SMS from the airwaves, RSS feeds are updating us with real-time information of what is happening in real-life. We watch/observe the course of this disaster on traditional media outlets and the blogosphere to keep abreast of this unfolding drama. Yet, the question remains, now that we are aware of the plight of Myanmar/Burma, through these mediated experiences from ICTs, are we now morally accountable to act?

The following video conversation between Mark Leon Goldberg and Matthew Lee highlights the predicament we are experiencing regarding the situation in Myanmar/Burma.

Because we are now fully aware of the situation in Myanmar/Burma through information and communication technologies are we somehow responsible to act, irregardless of the Military Junta’s actions. Furthermore, how could we act from a SmartMob perspective? What are you thoughts? Please share.


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