For tomorrow night’s Fertile Ambition call, my argument is that the internet is an inherently disruptive force for institutions and industries whose business models don’t take advantage of a flattening world. Pragmatically speaking, I’ve identified the music, movie, and news industries as ones which have already been at the receiving end of this characteristic. In the near future, I see at least the political and educational systems facing serious change.
One effect of the disruption I’ve identified, but have no support for at the moment, is that the institution has a reduced capacity to fulfill its tasks through the duration of the evolution. Moreover, if there are no support mechanisms in place, then society’s capacity to function in the affected arena is seriously hindered. Alternative methods of education are abundant on the internet, but I can’t think of any backups we have for the current political process.
There are at least several questions I still have. How valid is this premise (and is it concrete enough)? What other institutions or industries are vulnerable? How do institutions take preemptive action to address the changes they will eventually have to deal with? Most importantly, what are the discrete components of each stage of institutional evolution?