The Information Age And Soviet Society

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The Information Age And Soviet Society

By Richard W. Judy and Virginia L. Clough
Hudson Institute, 1989
99 pp.

How is the "information revolution" doing in the Soviet Union? According to this valuable and intriguing book, computer and communication technologies are developing, but only fitfully, in a manner constrained by the political system. The use of personal computers is largely confined to Moscow and a few large cities, with restrictions on intracity telecommunications severely limiting information exchange. Moreover, there is some evidence of conservatives' reluctance to abandon party and state control over the production and dissemination of information. (Mikhail Gorbachev, on the other hand, is said to enjoy the Macintosh given him by Apple's John Scully.) The authors argue that the Soviet information revolution depends upon the success of perestroika and softening of bureaucratic restraints.

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