Big Brother has long been raised as a threat of technological advancement (and certainly the National Security Agency has done its fair share of snooping). But in reality, it is the encroachment of Little Brother that average Americans are more likely to feel in our day-to-day lives — that people around us carry digital devices that can be pulled out for photo or videos, or they can easily copy digital files (compared to the months of covert photocopying that Ellsberg did for 7,000 pages) that others would rather not have shared with the world.
One notable strength of raw material: it has a natural viral lift for two reasons — audience engagement, and the way legacy media jas operated with regard to sourcing and competition.
Social media is a three-legged stool: create, consume, and share content. Because original material often feels more like an original discovery, it is more appealing to share. Documents, videos and photos are there for anyone to examine and experience firsthand. The audience can interpret, debate, comment as they choose, and they feel greater freedom to re-upload and remix that material, especially video. The Neda video was reconfigured numerous times, with various soundtracks, introductions and spliced photos. At a certain point nearly all of the top 20 YouTube videos in the news and politics category were different versions of the Neda video. Many of these forms — particularly video and photos — more easily transcend international borders.
Fantastic article by my friend @jenny8lee on our post-Wikileaks world.