Thursday, July 10, 2014

Power & The Rise of You, the Social Lab Rat

The internet might have provided us unrestricted education, fun, and communication however it reveals the dark side of its purpose and human nature. Which is inevitable is manipulation of lives.

Mark of FaceBook. Google Founders, multitude of organizations are willing to push technology from  a good intention medium into a shady medium. It's sort of like Superman with x-ray vision. Sure the x-ray vision  can be used to assist mankind...but nothing can stop superman from occasionally  using  it to see through women clothing without their knowledge.  Another way to put it, please use our free -ad supported tools but on the side you will be a lab rat.

We imprison rats against their will to serve us as experimental devices a.k.a lab rats.  They never volunteered their lives however because we’ve concluded they are insignificant, we can do whatever we want. We can manipulate their genes, inject foreign objects into their system. Therefore the reality is that when these companies have access to so much information about our preferences and nature they simply seem to conclude that our lives are inferior and it's simply a resource to be exploited.

“It’s an interesting conclusion, but also one that was arrived at because Facebook manipulated the experience of around 700,000 of its users without informing them. Since the study was made public, there has been unending debate over the ethics of these methods; the general consensus is that though there’s much to be learned from having such a huge resource of data, it’s less than ideal that a single private company has access to it.”- Unknown Author 

“That means that technology isn’t just a tool to get things done – when algorithms tailor what we are and are not aware of, they shape our lens on reality.”

“But if digital tech is increasingly a space in which we do all those things, then how that reality is shaped – be it through algorithms, design, or the availability of information – becomes crucial to interrogate. After all, Facebook playing with our mood is just the tip of the iceberg. Almost everything we encounter online is crafted so as to pull us or push us in one direction or another, and you almost get the sense that it’s because these companies are fighting to reshape reality in their own image – that when you think about your social life, you’ll automatically think “Facebook.” Tech companies have so rapidly become so large and essential to our lives, that challenging what they do has already started to feel impossible.” - Unknown Author 

Experts share a few internet threats they fear (compiled by unknown author):

  • Governments worldwide are looking for more power over the Net
  • Copyright and patent. Both will die away. That will spur innovation into the extreme. That is the real singularity.
  • Actions by nation-states to maintain security and political control will lead to more blocking, filtering, segmentation, and balkanization of the Internet.
  • Trust will evaporate in the wake of revelations about government and corporate surveillance and likely greater surveillance in the future.
  • Commercial pressures affecting everything from Internet architecture to the flow of information will endanger the open structure of online life.
  • Efforts to fix the TMI (too much information) problem might over-compensate and actually thwart content sharing.
  • People will gain a stronger social and political voice as they learn more about themselves and society, while connected technology adds a new layer of data to our interactions with the world.

Some of the brighter aspects of the digital future include  (compiled by unknown author):

  • Information sharing will seamlessly integrate, flowing like electricity, through machine intermediaries.
  • The spread of the Internet will enhance global connectivity and relationships between people across the globe.
  • With all the information collected online, we will become more aware of the world and our own behavior.
  • Augmented reality and wearable tech will be more fully implemented into daily life.
  • As more people get connected, there will be an increase in socio-political awareness – for better (peaceful change) or worse (uprisings).
  • Nation states, and geographic boundaries, diminish as people form new digital ‘nations’ on the “Ubernet”.
  • The Internet will fragment, leading to many ‘internets’ with different requirements for entry.
  • Revolution in education – with unversal access to knowledge.

“It’s not all sunshine and rainbows, however, as experts predict that the dark side of human nature and our indifference towards people we cannot see online will lead to greater abuse, and detachment from reality.”

Some of the negative impacts of the digital future include  (compiled by unknown author):

  • The digital divide will grow even larger, leading to greater resentment and violence.
  • Abuse will evolve and scale; cyber-crime, -terrorism and -bullying will grow proportionally to technology, beyond control.
  • Governments will rise to implement political and social control through regulation.
  • Privacy will disappear, and only the wealthy will preserve any sense of it.
  • Humans will be unable to cope and keep up with challenges presented by complex networks.
  • People will be unable to comprehend and adapt as a virtual world alters fundamental social structures like communication, interaction, politics and what it means to be human.

The big question, are people in power turning people to lab rats or have people just submitted to become lab rats or everyone is a lab rat?

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