What Clay Shirky means by “most of the barriers to group action have collapsed, and without those barriers, we are free to explore new ways of gathering together and getting things done” is basically that we create our own limits and do what we want.
When we come together as a group and able to discuss and agree upon things we are able to get more accomplished and achieve more. Technology has helped with the advancement of New Media. It’s purpose is to break down barriers and to eliminate the gatekeepers. Before the emergence of social media, everything was basically one way. The news, tv, and radio would provide the content and information. What they said goes and there wasn’t really a way for us to communicate back to respond other than writing a letter or something. With the emergence of social media (twitter, facebook, and other blogging sites) we were able to not only voice our opinions but to also create content and become the source for news. I believe this is the main point Shirky was trying to make. Instead of being just a consumer we are now a producer and that’s exactly what Enzenberger encouraged us to do as well.
McLuhan also encourages us to use technology to change and make lives better. In his article Narcissus as Narcosis, he says that “All media are extensions of man that cause deep and lasting changes in him and transform his environment.” We are using cell phones and the internet to basically create a new and better world and extend ourselves. My iphone allows me to capture video footage of whatever I want and add filters and edit as I please. With the help of YouTube I can post those videos online and now I can label myself as a filmmaker. New technology and advancements in new media allow us to do more now than ever before.