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Can Facebook Replace Face-to-Face?

September 23, 2008

Social Actions founder and micro-philanthropy consultant Peter Dietz recently posted an audio clip recorded at the National Conference on Citizenship on the topic "Can Facebook Replace Face-to-Face?" Moderated by political adviser and Internet pioneer Joe Trippi, the conversation includes a debate between Facebook Causes' founder Sean Parker and the Brookings Institution's William Galston. You can listen to the full clip here.

Here's an excerpt of what Galston had to say:

We have become a more polarized society and our politics have become more polarized….That polarization has made it very difficult for the country to come together. Definitions of the common good are now different and conceptions of how the world works now differ. The late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan once said, "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." How old-fashioned that sounds now, because you have groups of people in the country who really do have their own facts.

If you ask me if these developments we are talking about now are contributing to the production of polarization and the expansion of unity within the country, I would have to say no. No, they aren't. They are intensifying political and civic niches — that is sometimes good, and sometimes not so good....

The Social Citizens blog is hosting an online conversation that explores the same question. Visit the site to add your thoughts, or let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.

-- Regina Mahone

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Posted by Beth Kanter  |   September 28, 2008 at 08:04 PM

Thanks for this. Is there a summary of the key points in the debates or a text transcript someplace?

Posted by Regina Mahone  |   September 30, 2008 at 09:58 AM

I don't think anyone has posted a transcription from the debate, other than the notes you highlighted in your blog post. I only transcribed the William Galston passage found above.

Let me know if you do come across one. There were some very interesting things being said throughout the discussion that are worth highlighting.

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