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Announcing a Flash Conference: "From the Tea Party to Occupy Wall Street and Beyond--The Future of Networked Democracy"

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, December 1 2011

Monday night December 12, from 6:00-8:30pm at NYU, Personal Democracy Media will present a flash conference titled, "From the Tea Party to Occupy Wall Street and Beyond: The Future of Networked Democracy" with Ori Brafman, co-author, The Starfish and the Spider; Beka Economopolous, organizer, Occupy Wall Street; Marianne Manilov, co-founder, The Engage Network; Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder, Tea Party Patriots; Mark Meckler, co-founder, Tea Party Patriots; Clay Shirky, NYU, author, Here Comes Everybody; and Zeynep Tufekci, University of North Carolina.

Across America and the world, millions of people are entering the public arena and, using social and collaborative media, forming powerful new networks for change. The result is a rising wave of challenges to the political order that are expanding the boundaries of political discourse and forcing new issues into the conversation.

In 2009, the Tea Party emerged as an "open source" movement with many local leaders and little central organization, other than a sense that Americans were "taxed enough already" and government needed to be drastically reduced in size. Now, and even more explosively, the Occupy Wall Street movement has rallied "the 99%" against "the 1%" and put rising economic inequality and the power of the financial sector at the center of national consciousness, using methods that draw on the internet's open and networked nature.

At this event, we’ll set aside the partisan political issues for a night and instead explore how decentralized and distributed empowerment is enabling new forms of political movement, and ponder questions like:

  • Are these movements leaderless, or leaderfull? And either way, how do they make decisions?
  • Are these movements working within the system or trying to create a new one?
  • Getting co-opted: A danger or a sign that you’re winning?
  • Is a group still its own worst enemy?
  • New media and over-communication: how do these movements manage the cacophony they help create?
  • Is networked democracy to top-down politics what citizen media is to broadcast media?

We are pleased to present this event in partnership with New York University, Tisch School of the Arts ITP Program, and co-sponsored by the Movement Strategy Center, Digital Mobilisation Lab at Greenpeace, the McKay Foundation, and The Engage Network.

Tickets are $5. Space is limited so register today!

Hashtag: #PDMteaows

Monday December 12, 6:00-8:30pm
NYU Kimmel Center for University Life
Richard L. Rosenthal Pavilion - 10th Floor
60 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012