哈贝马斯及其追随者受到多方面的批评。在这篇文章中，尤尔根•哈贝马斯(Jurgen Habermas)所说的“西方从前”或“(资产阶级)公共领域的兴衰”就是一个恰当的例子。谢赫，西蒙宁说:“哈贝马斯模型只有特定的空间和特定的经验可以被表述为政治的，不管他们是如何经历的”哈贝马斯的概念是公然理想化的(谢赫，2014)。他忽略了辩论的其他方面，因为他只关注当地的政治问题，而不是以有限的区域和视野为特征的全球性问题(Charles & Fuentes-Rohwer, 2015)。此外，由于女性和工人阶级不在公共领域之内，公共领域排除了社会中各种各样的声音。因此，我们很容易意识到公共领域存在性别偏见和种族歧视。它只关注男性和白人与他们的政治思想有关的观点，而不是真正的民主。因此，公共领域将私人领域公诸于众。另一方面，公共领域对特定群体的理念的阻碍和阻挡，又避免了其公开化。最后，但并非最不重要;由于阶级分化，公共领域具有理性表达而非情感表达的特权。
公共领域确实改善了社会，但忽略了空间和一定的经验，这是不可忽视的。在经济发展的过程中，大众传媒出现在我们的社会中，互联网开始在政治讨论中发挥重要作用。Zizi Papacharissi的文章“the internet as a public sphere”主要论述了互联网如何影响社会视角，以及互联网是否能够重建公共领域或创造真正的民主，这一直是一个有争议的问题。从这篇文章中，Zizi Papacharissi就其论点的优点和缺点进行了论证。
Habermas and his followers receive criticism in many aspects. In the article: “Once upon a time in the west” Or, “the rise and fall of the (bourgeois) public sphere”, as told by Jürgen Habermas is a case in point. Sheikh, SimonIn said: “the Habermasian model only certain spaces and certain experiences can be formulated as political, regardless of how they are experienced” Habermas’ concept is overtly idealized (Sheikh, 2014). He ignored other aspects of debate as he only focused on the local political issues rather than the global issues that are characterized by bounded area and horizon (Charles & Fuentes-Rohwer, 2015). Moreover, public sphere exclude the variety of voices in the society as woman and working class falls outside the realm of public sphere. So, we are easily aware of public sphere having gender bias and race discrimination. It only focuses on the views of masculine and white human beings in relation to their political idea and not genuine democracy. As a result, public sphere made private sphere public. On the other hand, public sphere hindering and blocking idea to specific groups of people avoid it becoming public. Last, but not the least; public sphere had the privilege of rational expression rather than emotional idea because of the class division.
Public sphere truly improved society, but the neglect of space and certain experience, which are not invisible. During the progress of the economy, mass media appeared in our society and internet began to play an important role in political discussions. Zizi Papacharissi’s article “the internet as a public sphere” mainly argues about how internet can affect social perspective and whether internet could re-establish the public sphere or create genuine democracy, which have been a controversial issue. From this article, Zizi Papacharissi’s demonstrated his argument with respect to both advantages and disadvantages of it.
A virtual space can enhance democracy as it provides opportunities that all different groups of people can demonstrate their political views online. Rather than public sphere that Habermas expounded, virtual sphere has the privilege of including women and voices of all other social classes, which is an enormous step towards social democracy. As a result, the role of citizens changed with the development of virtual sphere. In the book “The wealth of networks: How social production transforms markets and freedom” Benkler said: “Citizens are no longer absorbed in observing and listening audiences but experience themselves as more responsible for local and national affairs. They are no longer simply private observers but subjects involved in public and political communication (Benkler, 2006)”. Benkler argued that internet make people truly involve in political society and the relationship between dominator and citizens become more equal and democratic.
However, the notion that visual sphere can genuinely contribute to the democratic society seems to be a utopian concept. It is possible that internet provides various platforms for political discussion but the access of it is unequal. Three aspects may lead to this unequal situation: not all citizens in the world can afford computer to access political environment. Due to the growth of internet, it is difficult to hear weak people’s voice and not all citizens are willing to participate in political discussion. Consequently, we lost some groups of voice in visual sphere. In addition, visual sphere provides democratic space but also supply a place for discrimination. So, exoteric speech may influence people in an undemocratic way. Furthermore, visual sphere in relation to gathering certain groups and focusing on specific topics may lead to tribalization. Consequently, Visual sphere and public sphere share the same disadvantages.
We may question whether internet is public sphere and how deeply internet can influence political ideology. Papacharissi (2002) said that ‘so far, the internet presents a public space, but does not yet constitute a public sphere’. This dialogue illustrates the potential of internet. Hnece, internet may not be a public sphere yet, but it can be a buffer zone between bourgeois public sphere and ideal public sphere.