Individual power is that which an individual can wield directly, what may historically have been viewed a strong social ties within a network, ties that carry influence and are forged upon trust. Individual power may have a second layer of effect out to the loose social ties that sit further out in our network. Ultimately individual power is limited to 1° of separation.
Network power relies on the amplification and social reinforcement of the communities around us. It’s the type of power that can take ideas and make them spread, often not equally through networks, but rather through nodes and amplifiers. Nodes are highly connected individuals within a network who will carry high social capital and high social reputation. Ideas that flow through these high-value nodes are much more likely to be amplified. This amplified effect is the basis of networked power. Martyrs and heroes both convey networked forms of power. Indeed, both also operate individual power, people they can interact with directly, as well as broadcast power out to a wider network with whom they do not interact, but it’s through the amplification and reinforcement of nodes and amplifiers in the network that they gain their networked power.
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