Social machines are socio-technical systems made by the interaction of humans and computers; among them, there are platforms that span the world and shape economic, political, social relations. Social machines build environments that are topologically situated but heavily charged with informative and communicative value (infosphere, semiosphere) that transcend physical topologies. Along the geographies of the digital, we find geographies generated by the digital, environments where action and power at a distance is possible (“milieu”). What are the social consequences and ethical implications of this new communicative and informative environment? What ecology do we need to respect in designing them? Physically, social machines are spread over geographies that are part of a global economy. Semiotically, they host places that are simply “other” (heterotopies), or ideally good or bad spaces (utopias/ dystopias). Following an environmental approach, a fourfold classification of spaces is here suggested: a-topic, hetero-topic, iso-topic and soma-topic: starting from an topology unrelated with any physical space to more proximal ones, ending with close-to-body relational spaces. Following this proximal and environmental approach, ethical issues may arise from concentrated powers altering the communicative context but also from typical ecologic issues such as reduction of variety and pollution.
Topologies of the ICT-built space: an ecological taxonomy of space for social machines
Cammozzo A. (2021) "Topologies of the ICT-built space: an ecological taxonomy of space for social machines " Journal of Ethics and Legal Technologies, 3(2), 35-53. DOI: 10.14658/pupj-JELT-2021-2-3
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Journal of Ethics and Legal Technologies
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