To provide a comprehensive evaluation of the internet in American democracy, Bruce Bimber sets the contemporary information revolution in historical context, asserting that past developments in American history offer important lessons for understanding how the internet is affecting politics. He examines how citizens and organizations use it for political purposes and is especially interested as to whether new technology is making Americans more engaged in their government. This study about the internet and politics combines historical and survey analysis with case studies of political events.
1. Information and political change; 2. Information revolutions in American political development; 3. The fourth information revolution and post-bureaucratic pluralism; 4. Political organizations in the fourth information revolution; 5. Political individuals in the fourth information revolution; 6. Information, equality, and integration in the public sphere.
"Bimber offers a thesis that is finely tuned and evidence that is fascinating in its in-depth examination of the use of new technology by groups. Information and American Democracy is an important book, one that should be read by every student of political communication as well as by those only more casually interested in the political implications of new technology." Political Science Quarterly
"Information and American Democracy has the virtues of careful scholarship, impressive consstruction of argument, and a close eye to the detail of political affairs...its referencing and methodology are exemplary." American Journal of Sociology
"Bimber judiciously argues that changes in core technology have organizational and behavioral consequences. Avoiding technological determinism, he makes a convincing case.... Highly recommended." Choice