Discuss some of various "causes of cultural lag or of the obstacles to the adoption of invention". Then, please describe a "cultural lag" that occurred after the development of a recent technological innovation.
The term cultural lag refers to the concept that the culture tends to take more time in order to catch up with the innovations made technologically and this may result to social problems and conflicts. This is explained further into detail by Dr. James Woodward who gives an explanation that when there is a change in material conditions, there would be a change occasioned in the adaptive culture, even though these changes in adaptive culture would not match precisely with changes in material culture, thereby this delay being termed as cultural lag. William Ogburn, a sociologist suggested that progress is fueled by technology, but that it is tempered by social responses to it. In addition, he developed a framework for looking at the impact of technological innovation on society.
One of the cultural lag that has occurred due to the development of recent technological innovation is the automobiles. The automobiles have advanced, becoming faster, fuel efficient, but on the other hand not all the culture has equally kept up with this pace and changes in technology. This can be seen in roads as they cannot be driven on by a variety of different vehicles. Also speed limits have been imposed by intimidation. Curves in roadways have been difficult to drive through in some weather conditions and generally driving has been a dangerous thing in life. This hence shows that vehicles have not been consistent in relations of time and space and as such, the advancement of roadways is not at par with the advancement of automobile thereby causing a cultural lag.
Explain and give examples of what Shirky means when he says (referring to the media landscape in the 20th Century): “The media that is good at creating conversations is no good at creating groups. And that’s good at creating groups is no good at creating conversations.", and Explain how—according to Shirky—the Internet has enabled “members of the former audience” to become producers”.
As media get digitized, the internet also on its path becomes the mode of carriage of all other media. By this we mean that phone calls migrate to the internet as well as magazines, movies among others. As such, it is becoming a site of coordination and due to that, groups that see, watch or listen to something can come around and talk to each other as well. In today’s world where media is social, global, ubiquitous and cheap, media is less often involved in the crafting of one message to be received by individuals. It is more often a method of creating an environment for convening and supporting groups.
Ogburn, W. F. (1992). Social Change with Respect to Culture and Original Nature. London: Blackwell Publishers.
Shirky, C. (2009). Here Comes Everybody: How Change Happens when People Come Together. Chicherly: Penguin Books.
Shirky, C. (1995). Voices from the Net. New York: John Wiley and Sons.
William Fielding OGBURN, . D. (1964). William F. Ogburn on Culture and Social Change. London: Oxford PUblishers.