Reintroduces alienation theory and research. Considers alienation in a cybernetic sense as a generic term for different types of information processing problems in individuals. Considers these, more often than not, to be ultimately caused by developments in their social environment and reflecting back on that environment. Discusses the emergence of virtual communities, giving as an example the Thematic Group on Sociocybernetics and Social Systems. Describes its function and composition in a virtual community context. Considers whether Norbert Wiener foresaw the emergence of virtual communities and examines the link with the society envisaged by Niklas Luhmann.
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