Through the Network (of Networks) - the Fifth Estate


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15 October 2007


Professor William Dutton, Professor of Internet Studies, Director of the Oxford Internet Institute


The media are often seen as central to democratic processes: a 'fourth estate' independent of government and other powerful institutions. Now, the Internet and Web are creating a new space for networking people, information and other resources. This network of networks has the potential to become an equally important 'fifth estate' which could support greater accountability in politics and the media. It could also have a much wider role in opening up to greater social accountability other institutional arenas, from everyday life to specialist fields like science.

In his inaugural Lecture, Professor Dutton examines the emergence of such a 'fifth estate' and its social, political and other implications, including its impact on the quality and integrative capability of our information environment.



50 mins

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