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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Occupying the Noosystem: The Evolution of Media Platforms and Webs of Community Protest

  • Author(s): Glassman, Michael
  • et al.

This article suggests the emergence of a new dominant ecological system in civil discourse and protest: the noosystem. The idea of a vibrant noosystem is taken from the concept of the noosphere which was introduced near the beginning of the 20th century. The noosphere is a complex, uniquely human system of activity where individual minds use meditational tools to engage in the transfer of information and problem solving activities. The Internet has given the idea of a noosphere new vibrancy, creating a platform where that is capable of augmenting and extending humans minds so that they are capable of engaging in joint activity in ways that transcend traditional boundaries of time and space. The noosystem is offered as a subcategory of the noosphere, an ecological system that not only allows human intellect to guide our perceptions of more concrete settings, but to actually participate in defining and redefining these activity settings. Nowhere has the noosystem had more impact than in the current Occupy movement (exemplified by Occupy Wall Street). This article argues that our burgeoning noosystem is redefining both protest and social change. This idea is illustrated through an analysis of Occupy Youngstown, and Occupy Wall Street affiliated group.

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