Heinrich Heine University of Düsseldorf, winter 2019/20
Prof. Dr. Oliver Zöllner
Course title:Social media, digitisation and the everyday: An introduction to digital ethics
Course modules: Individuum und Gesellschaft (Kernfach) / Medien und Individuum (Ergãnzungsfach)
Language of instruction: English
Dates: 25 Oct, 22 Nov, 13 Dec 2019, 17 Jan 2020
Venue: see plan
Link to ILIAS page: t.b.d.
About this course:
Digitisation and especially the use of social networking sites have changed the lifestyles and daily routines of a great number of people. The most fundamental changes, however, may not even
be quite so easily visible to most people, and that is the reworking of how we live together: what kind of society we are, and the economic backbone of society, namely capitalism. In addition, humans start
to conceptualise themselves in new forms and fashions: no longer first and formemost as autonomous individual beings, but increasingly as entities oriented towards new forms of collectivity.
This is striking since, paradoxically, a classic promise of capitalism is to reach out to each and everyone on highly individualistic terms (think Amazon, think Facebook et al.).
How do we as members of digitising society, as inhabitants of Digitality (with a capital D), cope with these new patterns, concepts, and paradoxes? What are our new values, and emerging norms, for living in this new society? How do we tackle
challenges like permanent data exploitation (a.k.a. "people-farming"), the increasing struggle for privacy, the utopian promises and dystopian threats of artificial intelligence, or a far-reaching surveillance capitalism? Quite simply put: what does it mean to be
human in the digital age? What do we do with those digital devices, platforms, and applications – or they to us? In what ways does the digital infrastructure form our worldview? Are we happy about our new kind of existence? Or just too lazy to care?
We will explore the classic idea of ethics, will apply new approaches from the sub-discipline of digital ethics to our everyday life, and will try to develop concepts for living a flourishing life
under the conditions set by digitisation – or by whom, really? We'll need to start to think
about these processes. Preferably in English.
#digitisation #SocialMedia #Ethics #DigitalEthics
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