• “If you sit alone in front of your computer, type a document in your word processor and are not connected to the Internet, your activities are perfectly social: the ideas you think and write up refer to ideas of other people and what is happening in society… The computer you use may have been assembled in China and the raw materials out of which its components were made may come from mines in Africa” (Fuchs 4).
  • “[Karl] Marx stressed the importance of the concept of the social: he highlighted that phenomena in society (such as money or markets and, today, the Internet, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) do not simply exist, but are the outcome of social relations between human beings. They do not exist automatically” (Fuchs 12).
  • “Communication is certainly an important aspect of a society free of dominations. It is, however, in capitalism also a form of interaction, in which ideology is, with the help of the mass media, made available to dominated groups. Communication is not automatically progressive” (Fuchs 19).


  • Some believe that all media and cognition is “social” because we are considering what is happening in society and media sources have been created from raw materials
  • Others believe that only media that creates communication and community should be considered “social”
  • Still, others believe that only media that creates collaboration and cooperative work should be considered “social”
  • Critical theory is a specific form of critical thinking that applies to technology and is tied to Karl Marx
  • The Frankfurt School has traditions of critical thinking

Thoughts: I find it interesting how there are different opinions regarding which forms of media are considered social media. Generally, I only consider social media platforms (such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) social media, but after considering the example of how and why some individuals considering writing a paper on a computer social, I can understand their perspective as well.

Questions to Consider:

  • What opinions do you have regarding which types of media are social?
  • What is the significance of the Frankfurt School and its relationship to Karl Marx and critical theory?


Fuchs, Christian. Social Media: A Critical Introduction. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Print. 

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