Part I was Ethan Zuckerman's piece about "The Tweetbomb and the Ethics of Attention." http://doalchemy.org/2012/05/the-ethics-of-attention-part-2-bots-for-civic-engagement/ ; -- Howard
"Ethan had written previously about “the fierce battle for attention” when covering journalistic integrity and Foxconn; the tweetbomb story, meanwhile, focuses on emergent practices around gaming attention in social media platforms (modern infrastructures for communication), away from the usual norms situated around attention in news-sharing ecosystems.
These practices relate to what Ethan calls “attention philanthropy”: if you can’t move content yourself, see if you can motivate an attention-privileged individual to do it for you.
The problem is that attention is an issue of scale: how do you get the attention of everyone?. Social capital becomes a literal currency; we exchange the value embedded in networks in an attention economy. There are a number of assumptions underlying traditional mass media technologies, like radio and television: broadcast, primetime, the mass audience; but with the internet (like with cable and satellite radio), attention is splintered, across a multitude of channels, streams, feeds."