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Digitial Citizenship in the 21st Century Public Sphere

Digitial Citizenship in the 21st Century Public Sphere

IM DONG KYUN | Seoul National University


This essay investigates the characteristics of the contemporary public sphere and offers suggestions for enhancing digital citizenship in today’s platform society. It underscores the irony that, despite the vast expansion of the public domain, democracy has declined in most contemporary democracies. This paper suggests that the current public sphere is distinguished by four features, including democratic openness, fragmentation, homogenization, and mediatization, and provides explanations for each. It also explains how fragmentation, homogenization, and mediatization contribute to anti-democratic tendencies in the online public sphere. This paper then investigates the concept of digital citizenship and proposes methods for democratizing the online public sphere by utilizing individuals’ digital citizenship. In addition, strategies for promoting digital citizenship in education are discussed. It emphasizes the necessity to create and bolster the forces of de-automatization in order to combat the pernicious effects of computational capitalism and the pervasive influence of online platforms by fostering digital citizenship. The paper emphasizes the significance of exposing students to carefully designed democratic interactions using online platforms in alternative ways within the context of educational settings. The paper employs Bernard Stigeler's philosophy of technology and Luc Boltanski's pragmatic sociology for discussion


Public Sphere, Digital Citizenship, Civicness, Platform Society, Luc Boltanski, Bernard Stiegler

In/Outside: English Studies in Korea

2022, vol., no.53, pp. 12-37 (26 pages)

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