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Social Networks as a Tool of Political Isolation in Russia

Keywords: public sphere , parallel media , political debate , social networks , isolation , oppositional media

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The main idea of this article is to show how the configuration of new medias and their interactions with traditional media system in Russia contributing to isolation of the opposition and to social control which is advantageous to dominant power coalition. This idea contradicts to dominating common opinion that gives a great importance to new media and presents them like catalysts of social changes for example in Arab World (Khamis, 2011; Pintak, 2010). The direct interaction, the flexibility, absence of hierarchy inspired scholars to make conclusions about non-submission of social networks to the model of manipulated and instrumented communication. The critics of such “non power based relationships” has been made by Castells who proposed 4 forms of power within networked society (Castells, 2009). This article is examining social networks in Russia within the context of parallel public sphere generating alternative to officially controlled media debate and makes evident political conditions of inclusion/non inclusion of opposition forces into public debate.


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