Fred Turner, “From Counterculture to Cyberculture: The Rise of Digital Utopianism”, MediaBerkman, 2006/12/01

At the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, Fred Turner of Stanford University ….

In the early 1960s, computers haunted the American imagination. Bleak tools of the cold war, they embodied the rigid organization and mechanical conformity that made the military industrial complex possible. But by the 1990s—and the dawn of the Internet—computers represented a very different kind of world: a collaborative and digital utopia modeled on the communal ideals of the hippies who so vehemently rebelled against the cold war establishment in the first place.

Fred Turner explores this extraordinary and ironic transformation by tracing the previously untold story of a highly influential group of San Francisco Bay–area entrepreneurs who made the connections between San Francisco “flower power” and the emerging technological hub of Silicon Valley. Thanks to their vision, counterculturalists and technologists alike joined together to reimagine computers as tools for personal liberation, the building of virtual and decidedly alternative communities, and the exploration of bold new social frontiers.

MediaBerkman : From Counterculture to Cyberculture: The Rise of Digital Utopianism

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David Ing blogs at coevolving.com , photoblogs at daviding.com , and microblogs at http://ingbrief.wordpress.com . See .

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One comment on “Fred Turner, “From Counterculture to Cyberculture: The Rise of Digital Utopianism”, MediaBerkman, 2006/12/01
  1. daviding says:

    Turner started out with research into counterculture, leading to a network of The Well, Coevolution Quarterly, The Whole Earth Review, Global Business Network, and Wired … all with Stewart Brand at the hub.

    Before The Whole Earth Review computers were part of the industrial-military complex. After The Whole Earth Review, computers became a tool for the modern counterculturalists.

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