The Information Society

The Information Society : Issues and Illusions

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This book provides an overview of debates about whether we are entering into a phase of social existence without precedent -- the a information societya . Intended as a bridge between the literatures of a social theorya and the a social impact of technologya , this study exposes the myths surrounding the creation of the information society, discussing technologies such as cable TV and robotics.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 208 pages
  • 142 x 215 x 11mm | 268g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0745603696
  • 9780745603698

Back cover copy

In recent years there has been a great deal of speculation aboutthe possible consequences of the new technologies based on thesilicon chip. The forecasts vary enormously from those who predicttheir use in an oppressive manner by government and the state, tothose who envisage the advent of the micro-millennium.
This book provides an overview of the available evidence aboutwhether we are entering a phase of social existence withoutprecedent - the 'information society'. Further, it asks whetherother treatments of the information society theme are asking theright kind of questions.
In a departure from previous localized and technically-orientedstudies, the author examines the social shaping of technology (bygovernment, military and commercial-industrial interests), itsglobal context and its cultural dimensions. Intended as a bridgebetween the literatures of 'social theory' and the 'social impactof technology', this study exposes the myths surrounding thecreation of the information society, discussing such technologiesas cable TV and robotics from many different societies. In a clear, balanced assessment, the book points not only to new departures butalso to the perpetuation of present trends within industrialsocieties. It also asks not only what is shaping presentdevelopments, but what kind of values should do so.
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Table of contents

Acknowledgements Preface 1. Introduction: Roots of the Information Society Idea 2. A Marriage of Convergence?The Shaping of IT 3. A New Economy: New Classes? 4. New Technology, Employment, Work and Skill 5. Information, Democracy and the State 6. The Global Dimension 7. Information, Meaning and Culture 8. Information, Ideology and Utopia References Select Bibliography Index
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Review quote

"This is a lucid exposition of the empirical, conceptual and ethical issues surrounding the idea of the information society. In analysing significant contemporary transformations associated with the growth of information technology, David Lyon has clearly demonstrated the importance of the sociological approach." John Eldridge, University of Glasgow
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