“There are a lot of claims about social and other media’s power today. Some say that we have experienced Twitter and Facebook revolutions. Others claim that social media could potentially democratise the economy or bring about a participatory culture. Other observers are more sceptical and stress social media’s realities as tools of control. Understanding social media requires a critical theory of society that uses a dialectical concept of power. A critical theory of society can then act as a framework for understanding power in the age of social media. This article is a contribution to critically theorising media power in the age of social media. It categorises different notions of power, introduces a dialectical notion of media power, discusses the dialectics of social media power, and draws some conclusions about the need for a dialectical and critical theory of the media and society (section 5).”
Read the full piece, published as part of the series on Critical Theory of Information, Communication, Media, Culture and Technology and extracted from the original publication in Heathwood Journal of Critical Theory (Vol. 1, Issue 1).