Friends, Followers and the Future by Rory O'Connor
How Social Media are Changing Politics, Threatening Big Brands, and Killing Traditional Media

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"Rory O'Connor is one of the smartest media guys around. He knows who's spinning, who's pandering, and who's putting money in his own pocket at the expense of logic, reason, and the public good."—Michael Wolff, Vanity Fair media critic

There’s a revolution going on, as ever-accelerating developments in digital information technologies change nearly every aspect of how we live, work, play, do business, and engage in politics. Share and share alike—the numbers say it all as billions of people worldwide flock to online media and use social networks to discover and spread news and information.

In the process, ever-growing networks of “ordinary people” are using these powerful new tools to trim the influence long held by Big Business, Big Government, and Big Media. No longer just passive recipients, participants in social networks now regularly make and break news while organizing civic and political actions that bypass censors, outpace traditional media, attract massive audiences, and influence the rise and fall of brands, industries, politicians, and even governments.

In this insider’s look at how social media are transforming our world, Rory O’Connor explains the trends and explores what tech visionaries, media makers, political advisers, and businesspeople are saying about the meteoric rise of the various social networks of friends and followers, and what they bode for our future.

Rory O’Connor, co-founder of, is the author of Shock Jocks: Hate Speech & Talk Radio. He has won two Emmys and a George Orwell Award, among many other honors.


About Rory O'Connor

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Rory O’Connoris an author, filmmaker and journalist whose work centers around media and politics. Author ofShock Jocks: Hate Speech & Talk Radio(2008), and co-author ofNukespeak(2nd ed, 2011) his broadcast, film and print career has been recognized with two Emmys, a George Orwell Award, a George Polk Award, a Writer's Guild Award, among other honors.
Published May 8, 2012 by City Lights Publishers. 286 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Computers & Technology, History, Education & Reference, Science & Math. Non-fiction

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An era of participatory involvement is underway, and O’Connor offers both a history and a contemporary update on this modern informational superhighway with chapters highlighting the pros and cons of Internet name-branding, the visual prowess of YouTube’s innovative “audience engagement,” Twitter...

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