Sunday, September 11, 2011

On Global Communication - a starter for brainstorming!

As part of the Massive Open Education Course (MOOC)

during WEEK 9, Retsam Zhang and I will be exploring Global Communication!

Here's a starter for brainstorming: 

Are we communicating globally or are we just imaginary cosmopolitans?

You are welcome to join the discussion by posting your comments below and share your ideas!


  1. This is a great question and one I hope to explore deeply in the course of this MOOC. In my less generous moments -- for all the great/heady/passionate exchanges I've had on Facebook and other online networks, with people around the globe -- I think that we are NOT communicating "globally" in the sense that we are not sharing information to the huge majority of persons on the planet. Worse, we all talk about populations on our planet as though we have a clue what they and their lives are really like, while seldom hearing directly from them. So, often we meet up here in virtual spaces in order to preach to the choir. We click each others' links to petitions, sign, and pat ourselves on the back thinking we are "activists".

    In my better moments I believe so strongly in the power of this medium. In my best moments I think of it as being, beyond "medium", a "dimension".

    So the problem I'd like to explore is whether online exchange can bridge the gap. Can it jump from the 'net out to the street and the savannah and the shanty towns.

    "Global" does not just mean "everyone who has a computer and is tech savvy." "Global" should really mean "everyone". If we are not reaching everyone, IMO we are indeed imaginary cosmopolitans.

  2. I agree, we are not communicating globaly. It's often that i witness this miscommunication face-to-face even with great intention from everybody. We say we understand, we act empathetically, but when we don't immerse ourselves in others lives how would we understand the reasons behind doing the things they do or acting the way they do?

    Technology helped us connect but not immerse. it gave us a channel to speak to each other and offtered a listening opportunity. but that's it. not understanding the reasons behind things and certainly not reaching the majority of people, only 10-20% who has this technology access.

    we can't rely on it or on the way we are communicating globally, we need to consider it as our first step to do so.

  3. I thin we're getting closer, but not quite there. For every feel-good AT&Tish commercial that shows classrooms connecting from across the globe I have to wonder actually how much connection we have. There obviously IS a global connection, but how deep does it run, and with whom are we connected?

    What good is it to have that connection, or the ability to use that connection, if it is only to connect with a select few. This course alone has shown me that there is an unimaginable wealth of information to cull from around the world, but it needs to be via connections with the right people. If every time you logged on and looked around the Web, you only were able to connect to ten random people, or only left-handed people or only those who earn over $XXX,XXX,XXX, would that be useful?

    I hate to say it, but I feel I'm split down the middle on this one! We're trying, reaching, stretching, but not there yet.