This chapter discusses three major changes resulting from the emerging communication technologies. It addresses the new forms of shaping relations online. Friendships, intimacy, the rise of weak ties, as well as an increased fluidity of relations are discussed. Next, the chapter addresses the demise of expert knowledge. Starting with McDonaldization of higher education and the rise of anti-intellectual sentiments, the chapter addresses the new trends in democratizing knowledge. While recognizing highly positive aspects of the turn, such as citizen science, Wikipedia, or free/open source movement, it also addresses the darker and more troubling processes, such as anti-scientific sentiments, pseudotheories, and the takeover of knowledge production and distribution by quacks. Finally, the chapter focuses on sharing economy. By problematizing the “sharing” premise, as well as by showing the impact of the ongoing change reaching far beyond economy itself, the chapter introduces the notion of collaborative society, as better covering the social change we witness.
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