Ming the Mechanic:
Global Frequency and Smart Mobs

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Global Frequency and Smart Mobs2003-01-31 23:59
picture by Flemming Funch

Technology Review compares science fiction visions with the concepts Howard Rheingold talks about in his book "Smart Mobs" and the website with the same name. 'Global Frequency' is a new comic book series by Warren Ellis:
"Set in the near future, Global Frequency depicts a multiracial, multinational organization of ordinary people who contribute their services on an ad hoc basis. As Ellis explains, "You could be sitting there watching the news and suddenly hear an unusual cell phone tone, and within moments you might see your neighbor leaving the house in a hurry, wearing a jacket or a shirt with the distinctive Global Frequency symbol...or, hell, your girlfriend might answer the phone...and promise to explain later...Anyone could be on the Global Frequency, and you'd never know until they got the call." Ellis's story responds to significant shifts in the media environment — in particular the increasing role of mobile phones and wireless computing - but also to speculations about their social and political impact."
And then listen to how Rheingold defines Smart Mobs:
"Smart mobs consist of people who are able to act in concert even if they don't know each other. The people who make up smart mobs cooperate in ways never before possible because they carry devices that possess both communication and computing capabilities.... Groups of people using these tools will gain new forms of social power."
Like we're all part of the underground. We're able to act in concert, but our organization is invisible, and there's nobody in charge who can be bought.

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