Forms of Symbolic Violence in the Web
This paper uses the “clue paradigm” (Ginzburg 1979) in order to identify some “traces” (Benjamin 1927-1940) of a tendency towards a closure of the Web into “filter bubbles” (Pariser 2011) in the indexing processes market oriented by search engines, in the increasingly larger use of apps, and in the “mass” adhesion to popular Social Network Sites. The purpose of this research is to highlight some forms of hidden persuasion and exploitation that limit users’ freedom even when there is no explicit censorship in the Internet. The “doxic” acceptance of contents, structures and tools of the Web indeed bars some kinds of knowledge and some different models of participation, with significant consequences on the social construction of reality. In conclusion, we can extend to cyberspace what Bourdieu said about hidden persuasion: “of all forms of ‘hidden persuasion’, the most implacable is the one exerted, quite simply, by the order of things” (Bourdieu 1992).