Epistemology is the study of knowledge, and is the branch of philosophy reflecting on the nature and limitations of knowledge. In this networked society, with information being transmitted quickly via technology from the most distant nodes, we’ve come to an era where what we know about knowledge and reality has shifted. Gone are the days where we rely on modernists constructs of reality. New access to differing accounts, hidden account, and new perspectives is leading us to post-modern views of events and constructs. This in turn, changes how we view knowledge and reality.
In the case of Wikileaks, we’ve learned how social media allows for whistleblowers the opportunity and anonymity to expose “the truth” of events, offering a disturbing new reality to war and politics. In his interview with Rolling Stone, Julian Assange justifies Wikileaks as the pursuit of truth: truth is essential, information should be open, and people should be able to talk about.
If Wikileaks exposes hidden truths, Independent media centres (IMCs) provide a new way to view events reported by mainstream. A global network of independent and non-corporate journalist reporting on social and political issues, IMC allows people to contribute through open and democratic media. By reporting these grassroots views, IMC not only reveals perspectives to created balance truths, but opens new truths about mainstream and corporate controlled media.
We are witnessing an epistemological change. We are in a networked soceitywhere the truth is no longer held by a few – it can now be held by us all.