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Report

For a Progressive Digital Agenda

Introduction by Konstantin Woinoff

When, in 1889, the first Socialist International meeting in Paris declared the first of May as International Workers’ Day, they had a guiding principle: “Capitalism is organised along national lines— and only the international solidarity of the workers’ movement can counteract this development”. Now, 130 years later, we realize that the only system which is truly international is capitalism. In today’s globalised and increasingly digitalised capitalist system, the old social issues are merely re-emerging in a new guise. Both then and now, the whole problem revolves around carving out rules for markets and market players in order to prevent savage, merciless exploitation. But retaining and defending the democratic substance of our society is and always has been part of the issue, too. Both struggles —both social and democratic—are considerably more difficult to win under the conditions of digital and global capitalism, however. The difference between the “fourth industrial revolution” and previous technical revolutions lies in the immense speed and extent of today’s innovations, and also in the increased crosslinking of various technologies. This technological revolution is now in full swing and we are noticing the profound economic, social and political changes it is causing. We must not allow the discourse on digital capitalism to be restricted to company boardrooms, we must carry it into society as a whole. This is the only way that we, as socialist, social-democratic and progressive forces, can take an active part in shaping the technological revolution instead of allowing it to dictate our lives. The current book is the result of many debates and discussions held both within the Progressive Alliance and beyond…

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