"cultural Homogenization And The Internet"

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"Cultural Homogenization and the Internet"

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"Cultural homogenization and the Internet"


World is becoming a global village and new ways of communication are playing a mammoth role in it. Internet is becoming widely accessible and abundant form of communication, and resulting in changing the lives. The merits and demerits to open information systems is not a new debate. The convergence of cultures and increasingly similarity in the cultures is causing debates globally. This paper seeks to understand the homogenization of cultures and the role of internet. This paper is not an exhaustive list of all the concerns and researches; however, it does highlight the matters under debate including ethical considerations and discusses the future aspect of this trend.


Culture is dynamic and influential; it influences the lives of people and gets affected by the lives of people. Culture is basically shared, ideas, beliefs, rituals, norms and artifacts that sculptures a unique way of life and passes on from one generation to another generation. The diversity of cultures on planet earth represents the differences in the lives of human beings, each cultures caters to the social needs of its members.

A relatively new phenomenon is the convergence of shared beliefs, ideas, norms, and values. This idea is sometimes encapsulated in the term “cultural homogeneity”. It simply means that, smaller and less supportive cultures are fading in favor of more uniform cultures that support the larger societies. It is the blending of culture. Cultures are not disappearing overnight rather, in gradual fashion. The societies and their cultures are becoming more similar with time and new forms of communication. It is believed that this trend will continue until few dominant cultures will remain while the diversity we embrace today will be vanished from this very face of planet earth.

The agents causing this phenomenon are many. It includes the reduced barriers of communication, mass media, government policies, access to international markets, entertainment (music, videos), and global firms. Internet serves all these purposes, from mass media to entertainment (Jenkins, 2004). Internet initially began with the means of communication on private basis (Baran, 2006). The internet use is now a worldwide phenomenon, virtually accessible from remote locations any time. The internet has spread the information and knowledge. The cultures have been exposed to other cultures, leading to cultural diffusions. People like to wear jeans and not their traditional cloths, people want to drink cola and not some traditional drink. While of course it does not applies to everyone, but the trend is increasingly at exponential rates.

The uniqueness of cultures is decreasing, since cultures are diffusing into one another. The trends are quickly adapted from one culture to another. Usually, the trends of more affluent societies are adopted by others. Food is one component of culture. In any developed country, several foods, including western burgers, Italian pizzas, Indian spicy foods, and Chinese foods are easily available. So in a sense, all these different foods compete with one another and few of them survive while other disbands (Pimentel, & Pimentel, ...