Thanks to social media, readers can engage with content like never before. But the incentives behind the media platforms we use don’t always encourage our best behavior, or most reasoned arguments. The interactions we are subject to are often anonymous, dehumanizing, and polarizing. As a result, social media can easily become a breeding ground for hatred and bullying.
Whereas prior to the pandemic, this dynamic was buffered by meaningful, in-person debate and interaction; amidst the backdrop of COVID-19, which has trapped the nation indoors and behind screens, it can start to feel like the out-of-touch abstractions of the digital world are slowly becoming reality…are they?
As a new organization that is responsible for hosting thought-provoking events and stimulating conversations in the progressive Armenian community, Zoravik is navigating this fragile territory along with the rest of you. In hopes of being transparent about how we are handling threats to rational discourse, on Wednesday, August 19, we are hosting the event “Rationalizing the Irrational: Can Reason Persevere in the Age of Twitter?,” hosted by Zoravik members Karine Vann, a freelance journalist and former editor of the Armenian Weekly, and Lisa Gulesserian, a preceptor at Harvard.
In it, we hope to address the discrepancy between life in analogue and what we see in depictions online. How can we stand by our values of civility, balance, nuance, intellectual curiosity, logic, reason, and kindness when these qualities are so rarely rewarded by the technologies and institutions at the helm of the nation?