This post on Howard Rheingold’s Smart Mobs blog puts me in one of those ranting moods, where I want to bemoan the top-down habits of church denominations and thus neglect the real theological power of the people of God: the network; a network which is essential to “tuning in” into God. This is not because there is magic in some myterious Sociology, but becuase this is the way God has “gathered” his people, and the corporate form to which he constantly calls us.
How Kerry campaign ditched Dean campaign p2p tactics:
Kerry imposed a traditional, asymmetrical, industrial era Master/Slave broadcast communications organizing principal on his campaign. Kerry did not trust the voters to generally do the right thing most of the time. Thus he was basically unable to leverage cooperative gain created by the collective actions of his supporters at the edges of his campaign.
While this is also a key issue with maximizing democracy (the “participation” thing), it is very much at the heart of what I feel strongly about how peer-to-peer is an important theological piece of the ecclesial pie (not neccessarily the technology-enhanced variety of p2p, but the concept of an interdependent, collaboaration with God andf one another as we seek together to resist the culture and be a particular people.
Of course, I have much to say on the topic of the technology-enhanced version, and how this EXTENDS the reach both in geography and time of the ftf (face-to-face) kind of p2p. The “connectability” of blogs is growing by leaps and bounds via things such as comments, RS, trackbacks, tagging, and the list goes on. Demonations and church bodies of all kinds and sizes has a huge task before them in “equipping” the saints in the skills of communicating and turning to one another for encouragement, sharing of stories, helping all of us to find one another so that the callings God is “transmitting” can be received in the context of those whose gifts and talents bring them together for a particular task, at a particular time.