The Economist has a fascinating account of the role of “social networks” in helped bring about the Reformation. In one paragraph, the author discusses the power of social networks in the viral spread of ideas (a common characteristic of social movements in history). He writes:
The media environment that Luther had shown himself so adept at managing had much in common with today’s online ecosystem of blogs, social networks and discussion threads. It was a decentralised system whose participants took care of distribution, deciding collectively which messages to amplify through sharing and recommendation. Modern media theorists refer to participants in such systems as a “networked public”, rather than an “audience”, since they do more than just consume information. Luther would pass the text of a new pamphlet to a friendly printer (no money changed hands) and then wait for it to ripple through the network of printing centres across Germany.
The whole article is worth considering as we believe God to bring significant kingdom change in our world.