Internet's super powers

by hvale

Structural power

Internet connects end-users, access pose the issue of structural power. Who has the power to land the cables, the satellites, the drones? Who decide about the last mile, the costs of the services? Internet can enact very conservatively but can be very innovative, think of the power to create community owned infrastructure that are outside the mainstream internet, that can stay off-grid or connect to other similar collective-owned infrastructures shaped by very specific local needs.

Discursive power

“Discourse is more material” than ever and internet give us “the capacity to create our own truths. Our own knowledge. Have unknown histories and practices be collectively shaped and known. From indigenous communities to queer communities”.

The internet enables the ability to participate in influencing discourse, shaping culture, which is arguably one of the most important shifts in power. Because it’s about what is invisible: our understanding, attitudes, beliefs, that then influences our practices.”

Economic power

The power of generating economic models and revenue, from the first ebay to the last start up. Here also we need to look at which kind of models are proposed. Capitalist, based on generating high profit and controlling an entire market as Amazon, or developing different economic models such as crypto-currency (bitcoins) with collective mining, elimination of traditional intermediary, or open and free source software where the technical solution, the code is open and, collective intelligence become the common pond for a mutual exchange between the individual and the community.

Embodied power

Internet and pleasure, internet as s/place to overcome limitations of mobility, accessibility from mailing list, to organizing of communities with disability to remote controlled sex-toys to erotics chats.


Anonymity online makes the exercise of autonomy, agency and dignity more possible, allowing for people to explore to seek community, to push the envelop of respectability and of social norms

Embodied power

Body on or in the internet means data, and there are extensive national IDs projects and biometrics where individuals become what their data says about them.


  • What is the implication of these multiple data sets, and what mechanisms available or what rights are there when errors are made?
  • How does all this impact the lives of people?

Networked power

The power of connecting and creating networks.

Most importantly, it connects us. Allows us from becoming weird atomized individuals to find others who are interested in, care about, concerned about the same things. Enables us to organise, have conversations, plan for collective action, take things to different spaces, make shifts across the different layers of power, occupy different spaces. Because the characteristic of the internet, is essentially one that is networked. It is about connections. And the freedom to make connections, towards the shift and change we collectively believe in, is an important one”. Jac sm Kee

The five layer of internet power are reflected, expanded and deepened trough the five clusters of the FPIs: access, expression, participation and building of movements, economy and embodiment.

The principles can be combined, refer to each other, can be used as stand alone and remain open for reflection and transformation.

To transform the internet, to generate the changes necessary we use the feminist principles of the internet (FPIs).

Their function is to give us a compass, a reading key.



boundaries are blur

there are no ready recipy

keep calm, stay self-centred, aware, connect on the ground as online and believe that you can make it

my s_place

Internet's super powers

By hvale vale

Internet's super powers

Internet superpowers, the Feminist Principles of the Internet (FPIs) #feministinternet #solidarity

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